Pallet-dependent businesses need a measured response to the extreme timber shortages and price rises hitting the UK. Jim Hardisty, Managing Director of Goplasticpallets.com, said a rapid increase in enquiries for plastic pallets in recent weeks could be attributed to low timber supplies, which have been referred to by the
Timber Packaging and Pallet Confederation (TIMCON) as having reached “an unprecedented level”.
Jim commented: “This is the second time in four years a severe shortage of timber has impacted those using wooden pallets. Prices for pallet timber have risen consecutively for more than a year and a half and those hikes are being felt by the customer. This is not the scene of a sustainable or stable market.
“The durability of plastic pallets – many of which are made from recycled material – makes them the ultimate choice to combat this unsteady scenario. Since 2014, when we were last hearing warnings about dramatic timber price rises, thousands upon thousands of wooden pallets would have been repaired, reused and retired. In that time, thousands upon thousands of multi-use plastic pallets have stayed in circulation, providing excellent return on investment. Throughout that period, the cost of recycled plastic pallets has remained consistent.
“When plastic pallets reach the end of their life, they can be reground. They then begin their time again as a new pallet, offering many more years of service as a durable, hygienic and cost-effective solution.”
High demand for timber globally and low Baltic timber supply due to unseasonable weather conditions are just two of the reasons behind the current shortage. Subsidies have also seen the biomass industry buying up small log supplies which would otherwise have been destined for use in new wooden pallets.
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