Czech firms have started ringing alarm bells at the lack of locally grown timber that can meet the toughest ecological growth standards. The alarm has been prompted by moves by some of the world’s biggest timber users, such as furniture designer, maker, and seller Ikea to set a target by 2020 that all the wood used in its outlets comes from recycled or fully sustainable sources.
Czech sales of Swedish furniture giant Ikea have climbed by nearly 10 percent in 2016. The biggest player on the Czech furniture market posted sales of 9.3 billion crowns, which is an increase of 9.0 percent on the previous year. The sale of kitchen furniture has been the fastest segment to grow this year.
Czech consumers are spending record sums on furniture, the daily Hospodářské noviny reported on Friday. According to the Association of Czech Furniture Makers, Czechs spent some 35 billion crowns on furniture last year, which is three billion more than in 2014. Experts expect the figures to rise even higher in the future.
Austrian furniture retailer XXXLutz is aiming to build what would be the biggest warehouse so far in the Czech Republic. The planned development covering around 150,000 square metres would dwarf warehouse already built for such corporations as Amazon, Lego, Internet sales company Mall.cz and US-based branded clothes and footwear seller VF Corporation.
Furniture makers in the Czech Republic have reasons to be cheerful. According to figures just released by the Czech Statistics Office and quoted by the business daily E15, the industry saw a 13-percent increase in revenues last year – the healthiest growth it has experienced for a decade and a half.
The police have arrested three men over last month’s attempted robbery of a cash transport van in Prague. The men, aged 32, 48 and 62, attempted to rob the vehicle in front of an IKEA store on the outskirts of the city on March 25. The robbers failed to get inside the van and take the cash and fired a sub-machine gun at the van as it drove off. One of the suspects is reportedly a repeat offender and faces up to 20 years in jail; the other two could land 12-year-sentences.
IKEA stores in the Czech Republic have halted the sale of all minced meat products after inspectors found horsemeat in their meatballs and traces of horsemeat in sausages used for hot-dogs. A company spokesman said IKEA planned to test all its meat products both from local and international suppliers before resuming sales.
A batch of meatballs pulled from shelves at IKEA's stores after Czech inspectors discovered they contained horsemeat had been on sale in several European countries, the company's Czech spokesman said on Monday. Petr Chadraba, spokesman for the Swedish furniture chain’s Czech branch, said the batch of meatballs had been on sale in countries including Britain, Portugal, the Netherlands and Belgium.