The Finnish Pavilion at this year's Expo in Shanghai resembles a huge white kettle, hence it's Finnish name is "Kirnu". The 3,700-square-meter surface of the Pavilion is clad in 25,000 made of ultramodern environmentally innovative wood plastic composite UPM ProFi shingles that were especially designed for the project.
The architectural concept by the architect Teemu Kurkela from Helsinki's JKMM Architects offers an elegant implementation of the Shanghai Expo's main theme ‘Better City, Better Life': Increasing the quality of life while decreasing the burden on the environment. UPM ProFi fulfils the task. The main raw material ingredients of this wood plastic composite are recycled paper and plastic which fall as surplus by-products in UPM's self adhesive label production. Just how well this composite functions as a construction material is something that UPM-Kymmene has repeatedly demonstrated conclusively in cooperation with Finnish furniture-makers Artek. Together with designer and architect Shigeru Ban, UPM Profi has also been used impressively for the 10 unit stystem furniture series, and in the Artek exhibition pavilion for the 2007 Milan Furniture Salon.
Markku Koivisto, UPM ProFi director, quantifies the environmental benefit of the shingles used in the Finnish Pavilion: "Through this project alone, we gave a new life to c. 20 tons of former label waste that would otherwise have had to be incinerated or land-filled."