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Pallets, Packaging and the Future of Materials Handling

Regular readers of our news section or subscribers to Modern Materials Handling should be familiar with Bob Trebilcock’s annual pallet use survey.  Each year, we run a summary of Bob’s findings and include a link to the survey results in an effort to keep our readers informed on the latest pallet industry trends.  This month, Pallet Enterprise did a fascinating interview with Bob that covers the MMH survey results and materials handling trends as they relate to the future of the pallet industry.  In case you missed the article, we’ve taken the time to summarize the key takeaways.

2013 Pallet Use Survey Key Findings
According to Trebilcock, one of the key takeaways from the 2013 MMH survey is a greater emphasis on looking at how pallets fit into overall operations in an attempt to achieve greater efficiencies and lower costs.  The data suggests some movement toward alternative pallet materials such as plastic and metal, but this change still represents a small chunk of the market.  Increased demand for plastic pallets has been fueled primarily by the uptick in the automotive sector and the need to replenish pallet pools at Ford, GM, and Japanese manufacturers to keep up with demand.  In the retail world, Trebilcock sees a movement toward smaller plastic pallets too.  Retailers are taking more store deliveries on smaller, half-sized pallets instead of traditional 48 x 40’s to reduce handling costs.Continue Reading…