Ligna wows again after four year absence

23 May 2023

The Ligna woodworking technology fair has ended in Hannover after 700 world premieres of machinery/technology and 80,000 visitors from across the world.

The event, the world’s largest show for the wood industries, showcased the best of solid wood and panel processing technology, from primary production to downstream manufacturing covering the whole supply chain from forest down to artisan furniture manufacturer. 

Organiser Deutsche Messe said the event’s five-day run from May 15-19 had around 10,000 less visitors than the previous edition in 2019 (an 11% reduction), though Russian and Chinese visitors were largely missing due to the Ukraine conflict and reported visa issues respectively. Nevertheless, some 80,000 people attended and companies lauded the value of seeing customers face-to-face again.

The long enforced four-year absence for Ligna had been due to the Covid pandemic.

Specific highlights included wood-based panels technology producer Dieffenbacher’s 150th anniversary party; new investor backing for Sunds Fibertech’s expansion plans; progress on autonomous manufacturing from Siempelkamp, Longoni’s LamiDry process for melamine and phenolic resin impregnation in the HPL industry; and new vehicles from leading materials handing experts Combilift and Hubtex.

About 1,300 exhibitors attended the fair, which had sustainability and digitalisation as its two overarching themes.

“In view of the uncertain situation currently confronting the woodworking and wood processing industry, the success of LIGNA 2023 speaks volumes for its status as a source of momentum,” said Dr Bernhard Dirr, managing director of VDMA Woodworking Machinery.  “Not only is it a driver for the industry in good times, but above all, it delivers solutions for the challenges ahead.”

“We are all happy to be back here after such a long time,” said Dirk Eisenmann, marketing manager at Dieffenbacher. As well as using Ligna to celebrate the company’s 150th anniversary, Dieffenbacher also presented its new artificial intelligence-based digitalization platform.

Achim Homeier, senior director global marketing & product management, Homag GmbH, said nobody really knew what the attendance would be like after the four-year gap.

“But we are very satisfied with the result and I think that most of the customers are really excited to meet our staff in person, to be able to talk to our experts and experience our running plants and new machines,” he said.

Siempelkamp demonstrated its IQ digital platform for the first time, showing how wood-based panel plants can be controlled more selectively, simply and efficiently, with all digital Siempelkamp products and services are now grouped together in a single location.


Ligna 2023 atrracted about 80,000 people