The last month has certainly been a busy one. At the end of January, most of the industry headed to Las Vegas for StonExpo and Surfaces (now part of the larger exhibition referred to as the International Surfaces Event).
When I opened up my paper of choice, The New York Times, two weeks ago, I saw a headline in the Home Section entitled, “What’s Lurking in Your Countertop?” By now, we all probably know much of what happened as a result of this article. Subsequently, other major news outlets - including radio and network television - have picked up the story. On YouTube, videos appeared showing people holding a Geiger counter against a granite slab - dramatic scenes with jumping needles and lots of noise indicating that something is seriously awry. Stone distributors and fabricators started receiving way too many calls from concerned homeowners - some hysterical; some reasonable but worried.
China’s largest annual stone exhibition, Stonetech, was held at the China International Exhibition Center in Beijing from March 4 to 7. Stonetech’s location alternates each year between Beijing and Shanghai, and this year’s event drew a solid crowd, especially considering the timing of the event, taking place immediately prior to the Xiamen Stone Fair. The number of exhibitors at this year’s event was higher than the last Stonetech held in Beijing, which necessitated the addition of one new pavilion that was mainly added to accommodate Chinese equipment manufacturers.