Stumped by pallets? We have the answers!

Get answers to all of the most commonly asked questions about pallets from the experts at Rose Pallet. How many...

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Get answers to all of the most commonly asked questions about pallets from the experts at Rose Pallet.

How many pallets are used each year in the United States?

According to the NWPCA, in the United States alone, more than 1.9 billion shipping pallets are used each year. The vast majority of these (about 95%) are made of wood. The rest are made of plastic (2%), wood composite (2%) or cardboard/corrugated (less than 1%).

What type of wood are pallets made from?

All pallets are made from the core of a tree; but, because the lumber used to make pallets is a mixture of hardwood or softwood species, pallet producers usually cannot specify the type of wood. And, mills in different regions of the country use different wood species, depending on what is widely grown and harvested in the area. For more info about wood used to produce pallets, refer to our post on lumber.

What constitutes a ‘used’ pallet and why should I consider used over new?

Remanufactured, combo, or reconditioned pallets are all considered used pallets because they are constructed entirely or partially with used pallet material. Industries that need odd-sized or custom pallets, such as manufacturing or food & beverage, rely on the remanufactured variety to help cut costs. Other ideal situations include one-way transit, companies that procure small quantities of pallets, or for material handling systems that require pallets with unique board spacing. Remanufactured pallets are constructed from various components of used pallet material. They can be customized to any specifications or size required. Combo pallets are ideal for one-way shipping.  They are also suitable for international shipping because they can be heat treated to comply with the ISPM 15 Standard, required for export shipments. They usually contain new stringers and used deck boards. Reconditioned pallets have been used and repaired and used again many times. They are a cost-effective and environmentally friendly alternative to purchasing new pallets.

How do I know what pallet is right for me?

One pallet does not fit all applications. We can help guide you on the selection process based on the information you provide about your organization and its shipping/logistics needs. It is important to consider, for example, load factors and equipment compatibility. For more information, refer to our post The Four Ps of Pallet Selection.

Where can I find scrap pallets for upcycling projects?

Good candidates are smaller retailers such as garden and hardware stores, machine/equipment rental stores, furniture stores, pet shops, and specialty food/beverage stores. Wait for a slower period of business so the owners have time to talk (you don’t want to divert their attention away from paying customers). When you ask, be sure to explain why you are looking for their used or scrap pallets. When people are drawn in to your plans, they are more likely to want to help.

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