Innovation of the Year

The Innovation of the Year Award recognizes a company providing new technology, product, or service that has been shown to demonstrably reduce production costs, increase productivity, improve product quality or in some other way provide a bottom-line benefit to APA members. 

Each fall, entries submitted by EWTA members are posted for review on the EWTA website and web-based ballots are sent to all APA mill managers for voting. 

The Willamette Valley Company was presented the 2023 Innovation of the Year award at the APA Annual Meeting October 16, 2023, in Palm Desert, California.

Are you a current EWTA member and have a new and innovative product? Submit your entry today. The deadline is July 1, 2024.

Learn more: 2024 Innovation of the Year Submission Details


“Creativity and value-driven innovation have always been Willamette Valley Company’s guiding principles, and we are thrilled and honored to receive the Innovation of the Year Award 2023 from the APA/EWTA! A huge thank you to the industry members who voted to support us. This recognition is a testament to our team's dedication and hard work. We are grateful for your support and excited to keep pushing the boundaries of innovation together!”


                           -The Willamette Valley Company, 2023 IOY Award Winner



2023 Innovation of the Year Winner:

Engineered Wax Emulsion for Wood Composites

Entered By: The Willamette Valley Company

Date of First Use: 2/24/2022 (Field Use); 3/3/2023 (Commercialized)

Benefit 1: pMDI reduction while maintaining panel properties; pMDI volatility suppression

Benefit 2: Wax volatility suppression; thereby reducing condensible wax deposits around hot press and in ventilation - Reduced Fire hazards.

≥10% reduction in pMDI while maintaining panel performance; About 50 °F reduction in wax volatility

WVC Engineered Wax EmulsionDescription:
The WVCO Engineered Wax Emulsion enhances two key industry interests: Safety and Cost. The Engineered Wax combines bio-polymer and wax chemistries in a patented process to achieve novel wax properties. This emulsion is designed to be inline mixed, and co-applied with, pMDI during wood composite production, allowing significant pMDI reduction (>10%). Furthermore, wax volatility is suppressed (i.e., flash point increased ~50°F), thereby reducing wax deposition outside press, reducing fire hazards.

There were eight entries for the 2023 Innovation of the Year. Click below to see all the entries.

View > 2023 Innovation of the Year Entries

View > Innovation of the Year Winners: 2016 - 2023