The businesses behind the modified timber product called Accoya says that a 10-year “collaborative research programme” has proved that it can offer a decade of exterior use maintenance-free .

The research was carried out by Akzo Nobel Decorative Coatings’ subsidiary, Sikkens Joinery (Netherlands) and Titan Wood BV, a subsidiary of Accsys Technologies plc, which developed Accoya.

Accoya is made using a process which converts softwoods and non-durable hardwoods into a more durable material by increasing the presence of ‘acetyl’ in the wood.

Edward Pratt, chief executive officer of London-based Accsys, said: “Accoya is poised to fill a gap in the market that’s looking for a high performance, reliable alternative to tropical hardwoods and other materials.”

Franck van Hooff, general manager Sikkens Joinery Benelux, said Accoya’s development fits well with Sikkens’ Longlife concept of joinery. He went on: “Customers are now asking us for maintenance-free periods of up to 10 years and the combination of Accoya and our coating systems will make that possible for the first time.”

Mr van Hooff said the fact that Accoya is produced from fast growing plantation timber fits well into Sikkens’ corporate social responsibility strategy.