UK Timber Supply Reaching a Crunch Point in 2021

13 Jul 2021

At Probox, we are the biggest suppliers of premier quality drawer boxes for the furniture and kitchen trade, so it would be fair to say that we get through rather a lot of timber in our line of work. We come to you today with news about the UK timber supply that could have big ramifications on the construction in general as we head towards the second half of 2021.

There have been cases of the booming post-lockdown construction sector experiencing issues with timber stock supplies, which the ongoing HGV driver shortage in the UK has contributed towards, however, that doesn’t seem to be the main cause.

According to the Timber Trade Federation (TTF) – the leading authority in the sphere – softwood demand in the UK is at the highest it has been for some time, outstripping both 2018 and 2019. Rather than being a supply issue, it would seem that it’s more about excess demand.

Unprecedented Timber Demand

At the end of 2020, we were in a situation where there wasn’t a single consignment of timber that wasn’t sold to someone – something never before seen in the UK. This has meant that only those with forward-looking buying strategies have been able to be certain that they’re receiving their materials.

While timber is continuing to be imported in high volumes to keep pace, the continued surge in the construction industry in an attempt to catch up for time lost to Covid-19 may result in higher prices and some empty shelves at the trade counter.

Companies Need to Work Closely With Suppliers

Chief Executive of the TTF David Hopkins urged those in the trade to try and alleviate the issue by working together with suppliers to manage their purchasing strategies more effectively.

It would seem to be a problem that’s not going to go away anytime soon – with timber sales up some 18% in January 2021 over the same period in 2020 – so companies involved in building and refurbishment projects need to be savvy or risk missing out.

The problem is also set to get slightly worse in the coming weeks, as the European timber sawmills traditionally used to manufacture much of the timber that’s used by UK trade are currently shut for maintenance, repairs and holidays, so it’s going to keep the supply tight.

Working Hard to Meet Demand

Moving forward in 2021, the Probox team will be continuing to work hard to supply our customers with the high-quality timber drawers our customers have become accustomed to. So, if you’d like to follow TTF advice and work with us more closely to ensure that you get what you need when you need it, we’d be delighted to hear from you.

If you would like to know more about us and what we offer, you should visit us online at where you’ll find everything you need and more. Alternatively, if you’d like to speak to us directly, you can do so by calling us today on 01280 428380.