I’ve spent more than four decades selling Canadian hardwood floors made almost entirely from the oaks, maples and birches cut from the vast deciduous forests which blanket Ontario, Quebec and the northeast United States.
For the last 20 years, I’ve watch the erosion of Canada’s hardwood and engineered flooring business, as it’s succumbed to incursions from cheaper flooring made in China, woods of dubious origin that have undermined the viability of domestic products and may pose potential health risks to Canadian consumers.
Experts in the hardwood flooring retail business suggest as much as three quarters (75%) of all hardwood flooring sold through big-box renovation chains and other direct-to-public retailers now hails from Chinese producers.
Many of our competitors sell “Made in Canada” hardwood flooring that in fact is made in China.
“ ”They” sell made-in-Canada hardwood flooring that’s made in China, if you know what I mean,” Ron Ander.
The problem isn’t so much lower cost competition — at least from the perspective of the consumer, who has benefited from lower prices — but where the flooring is sourced from.
And as Chinese wood-based flooring imports continue to grow, there’s also increasing concern about the lax oversight in China over chemicals used in its manufacturing, such as urea-formaldehyde or “UF”, a known carcinogen.
You are kept in the dark, and it is not your fault.
The majority of consumers just don’t know the nature of the industry, they trust the government with all the regulations that our tax dollars are supposed to cover. Canadians are just not getting the truth about what is really under their feet.
Today’s hardwood flooring could be coming in from a depleted forest that may or may not have been illegally logged half a planet away, manufactured in China, and packaged in Canada as a Canadian product.
“One of the biggest gimmicks is to say that the flooring is “From B.C.” because the ships from China run out of ocean at the B.C. coast. The point being that, you are being lied to and you are going to get swindled into buying Chinese flooring that is disguised as made in Canada,” Ander said.
Other experts say the influx of Chinese hardwood products has seen wholesalers who once prided themselves on selling exclusively North American and European flooring, quietly slip the cheaper wares into showrooms and catalogues. And the contagion has spread far and wide.
At the Hardwood Flooring Store in Markham and Burlington, we made the decision a long time ago to move to zero Chinese-made flooring in our two stores. The final straw was when a prominent Canadian distributor put Chinese samples in our showrooms without notifying us.
We decided we didn’t like the idea they were slipping in new products disguised as Canadian without telling anybody. We are an honest 42 year old company selling high quality Canadian and American products that meet the government guidelines for safety.
Please come and visit our showroom today!
There are over 100 choices of solid and engineered hardwood flooring items in stock in our liquidation division. Most of the items are high quality Canadian and American products that have been discontinued or are from a recently bankrupt top Canadian manufacturer.
Liquidation is only at our 7291 Victoria Park Avenue location (2 blocks north of Steeles).
Come now because the best deals usually go fast.