CKCA Stands with our Industry

Sandra Wood

The Canadian Kitchen Cabinet Association recognizes there are significant challenges facing the manufacturing sector as a result of COVID-19. CKCA asks that their consumers and builders bear with their industry partners and consider these key points as they work together to provide products and services to the Canadian and US markets:

  • Supply chain disruption on a global scale;
  • Increased demand for renovations, products for the home;
  • On-going skilled labour shortage;
  • COVID-19 health and safety protocols.

Supply chain disruption has led industry suppliers to create “allocation programs” to best manage the flow of limited supply to keep the industry functioning. As a result, materials such as MDF, white melamine, and hardware are in limited supply. These materials are normally readily available and the industry is having to adapt to longer lead times and increased planning to deliver on projects.

Increased demand for renovations is caused by an unprecedented surge for renovations to existing homes and new builds. This demand is on top of already existing and previously scheduled projects. It’s pushing demand even higher and this increase is expected to continue while real estate prices remain high and borrowing remains low.

The CKCA anticipates demand will continue as other influencers, including “aging in place,” will likely keep demand high, plus infrastructure investments by other countries including the US that puts demand on building materials.

Trades, in general, were already experiencing significant labour shortages which are now exacerbated by the slow down in immigration into Canada of skilled workers. Companies have responded by adding more shifts and overtime; however, this causes increased labour costs and is not sustainable long-term.

Strict health and safety requirements align with every employer’s commitment to keeping their employees safe. Lockdowns, use of PPE, distancing, daily employee screening, and quarantining are part of normal operations now for kitchen manufacturers. This has added more operational load and cost.

Our industry continues to adapt and has operated successfully through this pandemic. We ask for patience and flexibility from consumers and builders as industry manufacturers and suppliers continue to make updates to timelines and prices. Customers remain of the utmost importance to our industry and we remain committed to doing our very best to meet those needs.

CKCA president, Heidi Boudreault says, “In my 30 plus years in this industry, I’ve never seen these kinds of challenges. While my business is based in Alberta and we’re used to adapting to the highs and lows, these current conditions are pushing us all. We’re doing our best to meet the demands of our clients who are incredibly important to us. But the fact remains that these are global issues beyond our control.”

 

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