The Covid-19 pandemic, the growing restrictions and the renewed blockade due to the second wave have led to great uncertainty in the market. Uncertainty that has even more repercussions on the world of trade fairs, already hard hit in 2020, but which seems destined to make itself felt in the first half of 2021. In fact, not being able to predict what the evolution of contagions and the possibility of mobility of operators between different countries will be like, is pushing many exhibition organisers to evaluate the possibility of re-programming their calendars, especially for events with a greater international appeal.
Among these is Ligna, the world's leading trade fair for the wood processing and treatment industry, which is scheduled from 10 to 14 May and will be postponed in autumn, precisely from 27 September to 1 October 2021. This difficult decision was taken jointly by Deutsche Messe and the German association of machine and plant manufacturers VDMA following intense reflection and discussion related to the consequences of the pandemic.
Andreas Gruchow, member of the board of directors of Deutsche Messe, said: “The decision to postpone Ligna was very difficult for us, but it is the only consistent measure to give everyone involved in the planning, safety and time for preparations“.
Ligna 2021: privileged meeting point for wood professionals
With an average of more than 90,000 visitors, more than 1,500 exhibitors and 40,000 international guests, Ligna, a trade fair held every two years in Hanover, confirms itself as a privileged meeting point at a global level for all companies and professionals in the wood sector.
At Ligna entire fleets of machines are designed, assembled and presented in real time, which require long delivery times and high costs; this implies a planning of the fair that takes many months. Exhibitors must be assured of the presence of a sufficient number of international decision-makers as visitors. To ensure that the fair lives up to expectations, the organisers have decided to move to the autumn.
As co-organizer of Ligna, the VDMA also sees the postponement of the event date as the only effective means to successfully organize the fair in the interest of all participants. “The postponement of LIGNA is absolutely necessary. It is the most important platform in the world for our companies and customers in the woodworking industry,“ said Bernhard Dirr, Managing Director of the VDMA Woodworking Machinery Association. “The industry needs this market. With LIGNA in September 2021, we want to send a signal of new impetus and investment in the global market.
The three guiding themes of Ligna 2021
Numerous innovations are expected for the 2021 edition of the fair, particularly in the three guiding themes of Ligna.21: Woodworking Transformation, Technologies for the production of wooden constructions and Process Technologies for Bioeconomy, i.e. the processing of ecological materials.
The theme related to the transformation of woodworking sees an increasing growth in digitisation, from data management via the cloud to augmented reality. Also very topical is green material processing, linked to the concept of the bioeconomy, an economy based on sustainable and renewable resources, which in addition to wood also covers coatings, liquids, lubricants, colours and 3D printing systems.