"I think this is an indication of our value to the industry," said Russ Batson, PFA executive director. "Since its creation more than 40 years ago, PFA has given the flexible polyurethane foam industry a more authoritative, more effective voice to represent itself to regulators, NGOs, consumers and other key audiences.
"Members have proven that by working together, they can accomplish more than trying to confront industry challenges on their own."
Chip Holton of NCFI Polyurethanes and PFA president, recognized new PFA members including Ashley Furniture, Sinomax USA and Hansa-Mixer. At least 20 new companies have joined PFA since pandemic restrictions were lifted, PFA officials said.
Keynote speaker Balaji Padmanabhan of the University of South Florida discussed "traditional" and "generative" A.I.
And Liz Manning of Econic Technologies took home the Dr. Herman Stone Technical Excellence Award. Her presentation, "Redeeming Carbon: CO2-Based Polyols for Polyurethane Applications," was considered the best talk during the technical program, as decided by attending members.
Stone, an iconic figure in the flexible polyurethane foam industry, died earlier this at 98. He served as PFA's first technical director. Stone spent much of the rest of his time educating young people about the Holocaust, and Stone's own story appears in the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C.
"Dr. Stone would have been particularly proud of the quality of the technical presentations this spring," said Bill Gollnitz, past president of PFA and moderator for the technical program.
PFA was founded in 1980 and works for the benefit of the polyurethane foam industry and allied industries.