The Urethane Blog

PFA Meeting Overview

Polyurethane Foam Association Returns To In-Person Meetings
With Event In St. Petersburg

Conference Covered Issues Including Pandemic Recovery, Raw Material Supplies, And
Regulatory Challenges

ST. PETERSBURG, FL (June 7, 2021)—The Polyurethane Foam Association (PFA) recently
resumed hosting a live meeting for its members in St. Petersburg, FL, celebrating its 40 th
Anniversary and a strong rebound in orders for foam products.

PFA’s two-day meeting in late May was a “hybrid,” featuring live attendance at the Vinoy
Renaissance Hotel and digital streaming of its sessions to members who could not attend in
person. Overall attendance was near pre-pandemic levels.

Attendees included foam manufacturers, chemical suppliers, equipment makers, and other
companies supporting the industry. Discussions covered pandemic recovery, regulatory
proposals, end-user markets, and technical innovations. Particular attention was focused on
trends in the automotive markets and in challenges related to raw material supplies.
PFA also took the occasion to mark its 40 th Anniversary, a celebration postponed from last year
because of COVID-19. PFA created a video history of the association, which can be viewed at

“Our members were very happy to be back to an in-person meeting, with the ability to network
and renew old friendships,” noted Chip Holton of NCFI Polyurethanes, PFA’s President. “I think
everyone senses the excitement of getting back to business practices that we sometimes took for

A series of technical papers were pre-recorded and included in the meeting, with an afternoon
session dedicated to their discussion. “It was very encouraging to see the quality of this Spring’s
technical offering,” noted Bill Gollnitz of Plastomer, who moderated the Technical Session
remotely. Topics included novel silicone surfactants, Dow Chemical’s RENUVA™ foam

recycling technology, polyether polyol additives, and solid additives to increase the efficiency of
flame retardant systems.

Vasilios Dounis of Repi was recognized with the Herman Stone Technical Excellence Award, as
voted on by meeting attendees. His presentation was entitled “Non-FR Synergistic Additive can
Reduce FR Loading and Improve FPF Physical Performance.” Finishing a very close second in
voting was Melissa Kern of Momentive, who presented “Novel Silicone Surfactant With
Improved Foam Properties For Conventional Foam.”

“During the pandemic, PFA worked hard to make sure its members were provided with
information and tools needed to support their businesses, but it is refreshing to be able to get
together once again with our friends and colleagues,” said Russ Batson, PFA Executive Director.
“As we emerge from this unprecedented separation, we already see PFA members working
closely together again in strong support of the flexible polyurethane foam industry.”
Batson also recognized a new PFA member in attendance, Charter Next Generation of Milton,
WI, a manufacturer of high performance films. Two other first-time attendees, Concentrol and
Hexion, made technical presentations.

The Polyurethane Foam Association is a trade association founded in 1980 to help educate foam
users, allied industries and other stakeholders. PFA provides facts on environmental, health and
safety issues and technical information on the performance of FPF in consumer and industrial
products. FPF is used as a key comfort component in most upholstered furniture and mattress
products, along with automotive seating, carpet cushion, packaging, and numerous other

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