Before packaging manufacturers introduced plastic pallets, the EURO pallet made of wood was the standard packaging material for preparing goods for shipment. It has grown popular because it gave companies a standard sized packaging unit to help them calculate available space in storage, in trailers and to estimate their shipping costs. For decades the wooden pallets could be seen around the warehouses and loading areas of companies in most industry niches.
However, the early adopters of plastic pallets have discovered their superior qualities and, little by little, companies started replacing their stocks of wooden pallets with the newer, more reliable packaging solution offered by professional packaging companies.
If you are still using wooden pallets, please take the time to review these five valid reasons to switch to plastic pallets:
1. Plastic Pallets Have a Longer Useful Life
Plastic pallets do not break and chip like wooden pallets do. You do not have to send them to be repaired and thus accumulate more costs. Depending on your needs, you can find plastic pallets which replace the standard EURO pallet, or which can withstand very heavy loads (up to 5,000 kg). Made of reliable materials and following a carefully studied design, these pallets are recommended for long term and very intensive use. Thus, your company will manage to reduce its cost per cycle of use for these packaging materials.
2. Plastic Pallets are Easier to Handle
The design of plastic pallets is adapted to various types of handling, loading and unloading. Thus, the pallets that are handled with forklift trucks are designed with skids, while others are designed with 6 or 9 feet to facilitate stacking when they are loaded with products or when they are stored. Depending on your needs, you can choose from a large variety of pallet models: open deck, closed deck, cleanroom/hygienic and one-way export pallets.
3. They Are Easy to Clean and Sanitize
The main disadvantage of wooden pallets is that they can get contaminated with dirt, liquids, fats, oils and chemical substances and they may retain the smell of the products loaded onto them. By comparison, plastic pallets can be cleaned using a standard washing equipment in a simple cleaning cycle. All traces of dirt, stains and other contaminants are quickly removed and the pallet does not retain any smell. Moreover, pallets made of plastic maintain a constant weight throughout their useful life; by comparison, wood retains and absorbs liquid, making the pallet become heavier over time. This will have a negative impact on your logistic costs if your products are weighed on the pallet for transportation and customs purposes.
4. Plastic Pallets Are Easy to Customize for Special Sized Products
If you have products of different shapes and sizes or circular shaped products (such as cable drums) to load on a pallet, your company will have to invest in special and expensive shrink wrapping machines to secure the load on wooden pallets. The plastic pallets, on the other hand, can be customized with different accessories, such as prisms, wedges and pins to offer adequate support to all kinds of products loaded onto them.