A Universal Testing Machine To Keep Up With Regulations

Mélissa Gosselin

Inovem, the woodworking and furniture innovation centre affiliated with the Cégep de Victoriaville, recently acquired a universal testing machine, an ultra-specialized piece of equipment that will help furniture companies adapt to a recent significant regulatory change on the American side.

As the only research and innovation centre dedicated to the furniture and cabinetmaking sector in the province, Inovem works with manufacturing companies ranging from family businesses to multinationals. Operating in five niches (Future Materials and Resources, Sustainable Finishing Processes, Productivity 4.0, Digital Design and Customer Experience), the Centre’s mission is to increase the productivity of companies in the sector through the search for innovative and sustainable solutions.

This new regulation aims to raise the current safety standards for tilting children’s furniture. Concerned about the impact these new standards could have on the furniture industry, particularly in exports, the Quebec Furniture Manufacturers’ Association called on Inovem’s expertise to work together to find solutions.

The universal testing machine will contribute to the efforts of companies in the sector in their innovation efforts. By accurately measuring specific mechanical properties of furniture or other products, it will help them optimize their furniture design, ensure that standards are met and thus reduce development costs.

“Companies today face many challenges in adapting to changing realities, especially regarding regulations,” emphasized Bernard Lefrançois, Director of Inovem. “With this equipment and our support programme, the Inovem team will be able to guide its customers and partners even better in their search for solutions.”

This equipment, worth a total of $60,000, was made possible thanks to the collaboration of Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions (CED), which granted Inovem a non-repayable contribution of $48,000. “Thank you to CED for its invaluable support in this matter,” added Lefrançois.

“Our government is proud to support the Cégep de Victoriaville and Inovem,” said the Honourable Pascale St-Onge, Minister responsible for CED. “Our support for this college technology transfer centre project will help improve the performance of Quebec businesses in the furniture and woodworking sector and ensure their long-term survival. Helping entrepreneurs grow and innovate is one of our top priorities to remain competitive and create good-quality jobs. Congratulations to the Inovem team for its contribution to the economic vitality of the region.”

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