Brexit and the COVID-19 pandemic have become the perfect storm for construction companies who depend on daily lorry deliveries. The recent lorry driver shortage has put pressure on the UK’s just-in-time supply chains. No one knows this better than construction manufacturers and workers, who need reliable materials to create safe structures.
As prices soar, construction workers have their sights set on insulation. Without quality insulation boards, homes and workspaces will not meet strict health and safety guidelines. With so much misinformation circulating, it is difficult to know what is true. This article analyses the reasons behind the recent insulation shortage and reviews the industry guidance.
A Real-Time Example: Our 100mm Celotex PIR Insulation Board
The construction industry has been hit hard by recent lorry driver shortages. Manufacturers cannot offer their customers vital pieces of equipment quick enough. One of the most important casualties of the supply chain breakdown is insulation boards.
Construction workers cannot cut corners when it comes to insulation boards. These boards play a vital part in reducing carbon emissions. Homeowners that have insulation do not need to use as much energy to heat their homes, which helps the UK government towards its goal of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
Methylene Diphenyl Diisocyanate (MDI), which plays a vital role in the production of our Celotex PIR insulation board, is experiencing production issues. Speculation has arisen that Methylene Diphenyl Diisocyanate shortages are due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the last year, companies in the USA and beyond have announced their goals for increasing the production of Methylene Diphenyl Diisocyanate. Fior markets have even published a report identifying a positive trend in production. They state that the global Methylene Diphenyl Diisocyanate market is set to grow to USD 48.25 billion by 2026.
Industry officials can only speculate as to what the Methylene Diphenyl Diisocyanate production issue is. The lockdown orders imposed by the government may have had a knock-on effect for manufacturers, who have slowed production in an attempt to lessen their backlog. Now that construction workers need insulation boards, production cannot move fast enough to meet the demand.
PIR insulation has seen three manufacturer increases in the last year, which is more than double the typical annual increase. Manufacturer increases mean that prices go up for construction workers and for customers.
The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) have confirmed that the price hike is here to stay. John Newcomb, CEO of the Builders Merchants Federation and Peter Caplehorn, CEO of the Construction Products Association, state that ‘it will be 2022 before prices stabilise, with some manufacturers still to implement double-digit price increases to recover current and future cost inflation.’
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