A Compelling Case for Plastic Pallets Over Wood Pallets 

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yarzefirzi
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Joined: 8/8/2020
Topic  A Compelling Case for Plastic Pallets Over Wood Pallets       Flag »  Reply »
Within the next four years, the shipping pallet market is expected to reach 1.3 billion units. According a recent Modern Materials Handling article, that growth will be driven by the economy recovery and "the re-shoring of manufacturing" back to the U.S. from foreign soil. If that anticipated figure is reached, it will represent a 3.5% market expansion rate between now and 2017. What's more, the value of those units will reach $16.9 billion.

These were the findings of a Freedonia Group report on the market for pallets in North America. It is interesting to note that plastic pallets will be one of the pallet types leading this growth, despite currently representing only 4% of the overall pallet market. Indeed, according to the report, plastic pallets have "seen their strongest advances in percentage terms ever and will continue to record above average growth."

What is motivating U.S. companies to make the switch from traditional wood pallets to plastic pallets? The answer is a multifaceted one. First businesses are making the switch over to these pallets because of the product's superior longevity over wood pallets. An expert cited in the article also pointed out that "growing sanitation concerns related to wood pallets" is fueling the demand for pallets made of plastic. This is especially true when food is involved. "Food safety regulations" may become a powerful driver behind the move toward changing out wood pallets for plastic pallets going forward.

Regardless of the precipitating factors, the more frequent implementation and usage of plastic pallets is good news for the environment. The reasoning behind this positive eco impact is twofold. First, these pallets do not require the cutting down of trees that wood pallets do. Hence, they do not result in deforestation. Second, the plastic used in plastic pallets is recyclable.

A good case study is automobile manufacturer General Motors (GM). As reported in an article by OilPrice.com, GM has been making a concentrated effort on reducing the amount of waste it produces, the amount of energy it uses and the quantity of carbon it emits. The company's 2012 sustainability report reveals that it has been successful in these efforts-to the tune of $1 billion being generated from recycling initiatives.

Plastic pallets have enabled General Motors to be especially successful in its waste reduction initiatives. According to the article, "In plants around India, Thailand, and Russia, all wooden pallets, that would normally be skipped after unloaded, have been replaced with reusable plastic pallets, saving 566 tons of waste."

That figure has propelled GM's waste recycling percentage to 90 percent across its various manufacturing plants around the globe. Currently General Motors operates "a total of 105 fully landfill-free facilities... with plans to increase this number by 125 by 2020." In fact, some of these plants are located in India, Thailand and Russia where "all the wooden pallets that would normally be skipped after (being) unloaded, have been replaced with reusable plastic pallet."

As evidenced by these statistics, plastic reusable pallets are a great way for companies like GM to reduce product damage or contamination, lower their disposal costs, and improve the overall efficiencies of their outgoing product packaging.
  Monday, November 9, 2020 at 1:14:43 PM
yarzefirzi
Posts: 428

Joined: 8/8/2020
Reply  Re: A Compelling Case for Plastic Pallets Over Wood Pallets Flag »  Reply »

You can also put a chatbox on your blog for more interactivity among readers..*’:* Wood pallets
  Monday, November 9, 2020 at 1:30:17 PM

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