Peter Tong, communications manager at Finnforest UK Ltd, clarifies some of the confusion surrounding CE marking

Regarding your article on CE marking for panels in construction and the confusion that’s still around I believe TTJ’s statement “despite the introduction of compulsory marking of panels going into construction” is in itself misleading as the requirement to meet the Construction Products Directive in the UK does not demand products being physically marked at the moment. As long as you have the appropriate paperwork to back the CE claim up, the product in the UK can currently be left unmarked. I personally believe this only adds to the confusion as to what is and what isn’t legal.

Perhaps the even more confusing element is the fact that just because it is CE-certified, doesn’t mean it is fit for structural use as you need to meet the CE 2+ level of accreditation or have BS 5268-2:2002 for it to be legal for structural applications.

  We heari that some Far Eastern plywood is now being given a CE 2+ accreditation for structural use but with the disclaimer that this is only for external use and not for internal structural applications due to the inappropriate levels of formaldehyde used in the glue. Considering “Internal” structural applications account for most of the structural work you can think of including roof, wall and floor, this is not only confusing but potentially dangerous for the market as a whole.

Due to all of this unnecessary confusion, I believe the most clear-cut method of determining safety and legality of panels for structural applications is to continue looking for the BS 5268-2:2002 mark which guarantees conformance with British Standards in this area. All Finnforest spruce plywood is now being marked with both CE “Structural 2+” and “BS 5268-2:2002” to make this simple distinction obvious to our customers and the end user.