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Sustainability practices: Interview with Volker Kettler (MeisterWerke Schulte GmbH)

7 February 2024

Volker Kettler 
Head of Research and Development at MeisterWerke Schulte GmbH 
Volker is a civil engineer for construction, working with floors in general. With over 30 years in the laminate industry, he is involved in development and production, standardisation and testing. 

EPLF: What sustainable (or recycling or take-back) practices has your company recently implemented in the production of laminate flooring? 

For several years, our goal has been to reduce material loss during production. This means that the manufactured product is based on high-quality raw materials to reduce grade B waste wood and, in addition, we develop technologies to reduce production losses in the profiling and milling processes. The goal is to optimize the geometric profile and the cutting process from the large boards into the single planks. The specific method has been patented for years.

All milling dust is used to heat the press lines and the building.

Material saving is a key element, which also means the promotion of 7-10mm products instead of 9-14mm thick products.     

EPLF: Are you able to measure the impact of these practices?

Thanks to the special cutting method, we generate approximately 3% more width for our products compared to the standard methods of most of our competitors, which means that MeisterWerke methods save approximately 3-4% of material (depending on the product dimensions).

EPLF: Do you have any other plans for the future?

1) In 2024 and 2025, we are focusing on the electric energy reduction for production as such and are planning our own green electrical energy production based on solar and wind energy (to be completed in 2025).

2) A research project has been initiated for the “second use of laminate products” claimed within the R- phrases as remanufacturing / refurbishment.

3) A research project has started to work with bio-based binder and resin for laminate products.

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