A third-party quality certification has been developed for the heating industry to assure consumers that the pellets they are purchasing will provide optimum performance in stoves and boilers.The global annual trade volume of wood pellets is currently about 30 million tons, with an annual growth rate of about 15%. About half of the wood pellets are used for industrial power generation, while the other half is used in the heating industry for residential, commercial and institutional applications.
This is the first of two articles on wood chip pellet certification. In the industrial sector, pellet producers focus on sustainability certification. This is to prove to our customers and ultimately to the government that the pellets produced for electricity are sustainable. In the field of heating, quality certification is becoming more and more important as a means of providing third-party assurance to consumers that the pellets they purchase will provide optimum performance in stoves and boilers.
This article is about the quality certification of wood pellets. Basic introduction of wood chip quality certification. What is the quality certification of wood pellets? By an independent third party - the certification body - the wood chips of the certification mark are compliant with specific quality standards. The industrial pellet industry does not require quality certification because buyers and sellers often perform laboratory tests on samples taken from each pellet shipment. In the field of heating, it is obviously impractical for consumers to conduct their own laboratory tests. This is why third-party quality certification is developed for the heating industry.
The Canadian Wood Chips Association (WPAC) manages two pellets quality certification programs: ENplus and CANplus. The ENplus certification began in 2010 and currently accounts for approximately 80% of the sales volume in the European heating industry. The European Particles Council (EPC) manages the ENplus program and issues licenses to the National Particle Association, which manages the program. WPAC is a member of the EPC and is a national licensee for ENplus in Canada. CANplus certification is basically the same as ENplus, the only difference is that CANplus is managed by WPAC in Canada. Since CANplus is Canada's National Particle Quality Certification Program, it must be managed by Canada, not Europe.
The benefits of wood chip quality certification. For wood chip producers, quality certification has two benefits:1. Certification protects producers from the bad business in the market. Protecting wood pellets as a premium fuel by advocating that consumers use only certified pellets to ensure proper operation of the pellets in furnaces and boilers. 2. Certification provides market access. Since ENplus certified pellets account for 80% of the European heating industry, buyers are now insisting that imported pellets pass ENplus certification. In the United States, the Environmental Protection Agency has ruled that all new pellet furnace guarantors must specify the use of certified pellets. Three certifications are accepted: PFI (managed by the US Sawdust Fuel Association), ENplus and CANplus. In Canada, some provincial governments – particularly Ontario – have developed or are in the process of developing new wood heating regulations that require the use of CANplus certified wood pellets in pellet boilers.
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