Advanced Furniture Testing opens Jasper site

From local sources

HOLLAND, Mich. — Advanced Furniture Testing  is opening a facility at 2528 Cathy Lane in Jasper.

Advanced Furniture Testing was founded in 2007 by Doug Woodard, a Persian Gulf War veteran who supports veteran fundraising activities, to fill a perceived void in the furniture industry, which he thought lacked a dedicated supplier of high-quality test and machine building services. The testing gives office workers the assurance that chairs will support them daily, casters will roll smoothly and drawers will push and pull to support heavy contents.

The principals of the company served first as employees and now as suppliers to Fortune 500 companies, making them qualified to interpret test standards and test results. In 2012, the company moved to a larger facility in Holland, Mich., to keep up with the increased demand for furniture testing services.

“There are many reasons why we made the decision to open a testing facility in Jasper,” Woodard says. “Our goal is to serve the furniture market in the best possible manner, and we have been true to our mission. There are only a handful of regions rich in furniture manufacturing, and one is Jasper.
Therefore, we made the decision to establish a presence in this area with our dedicated furniture testing facility. The key is ”˜dedicated’  — we don’t test everything; we are recognized for our furniture testing expertise.”

Advanced Furniture Testing is an accredited lab and tests many standards, including the Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association, American Society for Testing and Materials, UL, Canadian General Standards Board, European and custom standards.

Furniture testing is not new to Indiana. In 1977, the General Services Administration of the Federal Government invited Purdue University’s Department of Forestry and Natural Resources to develop performance tests for upholstered furniture, for the express use of its furniture procurement programs. The resulting standard has been in use since 1980, with Dr. Carl A. Eckelman, professor of wood science, instrumental in developing and sustaining the program. Woodard has conducted research based on Eckelman’s work.

“AFT is here because of the work they do with several local manufacturing companies,” said Nancy Eckerle, executive director of the Jasper Chamber of Commerce. “This is economic development at its finest ”“ when a company locates in our community due to its working relationship with other businesses.”

A ribbon cutting will take place at 3 p.m. next Thursday at the 9,600-square-foot Jasper facility. Guests are invited to tour the facility and attend a reception afterward.

The company’s website it at

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