What is MDF?

Medium density fiberboard (MDF) is a raw material commonly used to make furniture, cabinetry, store fixtures, doors, mouldings and flooring substrates. Traditionally, MDF is produced by pressing wood fibers together under heat and pressure, utilizing a urea formaldehyde resin system as the binder.

Why CalPlant's MDF?

Made from post-harvest rice straw fiber and a formaldehyde-free resin system, CalPlant’s MDF represents a revolutionary advancement in composite panel manufacturing.

Rice straw is a byproduct of the annual rice harvest each fall, and like wood fiber, is a cellulosic material, enabling CalPlant to produce MDF that offers all the same characteristics as conventional, wood-based MDF. Annually renewable rice straw provides an extremely consistent and abundant pipeline of raw material, and all fiber for the operation will be procured from Sacramento Valley rice growers within a 25-mile radius of the plant site.

CalPlant is located in Willows, California, on the I-5 corridor, approximately 85 miles north of Sacramento. The plant site is 276 acres and the total size of the manufacturing buildings is 325,000 square feet.

It is a premium, no-added-formaldehyde MDF manufactured with annually renewable rice straw fiber, a byproduct of the rice harvest each season. Calplant’s MDF will consistently meet, and in some instances exceed, performance expectations for traditional MDF, competing directly with wood-based MDF in the marketplace.

All fiber for the operation will be procured annually within 25 miles of the plant location.

275,000 tons of rice straw will be processed each year on a ¾” thickness basis.

Siempelkamp, a global leader of composite panel manufacturing technology, is the equipment designer, manufacturer and installation supervisor during plant construction.

The ContiRoll® Generation 9 Siempelkamp press is 10 feet wide x 117 feet (35.4 meters) long.

Designed capacity is approximately 140 million square feet on a ¾” thickness basis.

2.0 mm to 32 mm (0.080” to 1.25″).

The equipment line has the capability of producing ultralight to high density fiberboard (HDF), which includes a range of 32-60 lb board, depending on thickness.

The Generation 9 continuous press provides significant flexibility, with finished panels cut from master panels up to 10’ wide x 18’ long.

  • Thin panels (≤ 3/8″) from 2’x4′ to 5’x10′
  • Thick panels (>3/8”) from 2’x4′ to 5’x18′

CalPlant MDF will be manufactured with a pMDI resin, which has no added urea formaldehyde.

Fire-rated MDF (Class 1A) is planned for Q1 2021. Moisture resistant MDF (MR) is also anticipated, with MR 10 available soon after start-up and MR 50 expected in 2021.

Product samples will be available shortly after manufacturing start-up. To be included on the list for samples, please fill out the form on the Contact page with your request detailed in the comment field and we’ll fulfill sample requests as soon as they are available.