Worldwide, well over 500 million wooden pallets are made each
year and the world pallet industry generated a staggering USD
30 billion in revenues with more than 1.9 billion pallets shipped
in and out of the United States in 2003 alone.
We, at Forward Pallet Pte Ltd
, believe that we
are witnessing the dawn of a new era in the world of shipping
and commerce as the wooden pallet is fast becoming a highly uneconomical
and obsolete product with a tainted history of causing incalculable
Effects on the Environment
Nearly 200,000,000 trees are felled each year or more than 500,000
trees each day just to make wooden pallets! With fewer trees to
help absorb the ever-increasing carbon dioxide emissions from
our use of fossil, carbon rich fuels and pollution causing heavy
industries, Global Warming has become a serious worldwide problem.
Every day, thousands of discarded wooden pallets ended up in
landfills or worse, simply left lying around to rot and posed
a fire and health hazard to the environment and us.
Many countries including the United States of America and Europe
found their native flora and fauna devastated by foreign pests
and insects that have been traced back to wood packaging materials,
which had arrived by ship and airplanes carrying goods into
these countries. Governments have spent hundreds of millions
of dollars in a vain attempt to eradicate deadly insects such
as the Asian long horned beetle, which had killed over 3,500
trees in New York City in 2003 alone!
Human Health Risks
Protruding nails and wood splinters from wooden pallets injure
scores of people and damaged thousands of goods daily, with many
wooden pallets handlers constantly injuring themselves during
back-breaking manual lifting operations. Annually, many companies
settle numerous medical and compensations claims relating to wooden
Toxic substances in chemically treated wooden pallets regularly
contaminate the food and medical products carried on it, resulting
in expensive lawsuits and insurance claims. Indeed, certain
sectors in the food and medical industries have restricted or
banned the use of wooden pallets in their processing plants
altogether for safety and sanitary reasons.
Economic Costs to Exporters and Importers
The average wooden pallet measuring 40” x 48” weighs
an average 18 kgs with the bigger ones weighing more than 30 kgs.
Shippers and consignees have long endured the additional freight
charges on the wooden pallets in excess of the freight already
charged on the goods, thus further reducing profit margins.
Pallet end users must pay on average S$75 a ton to dispose
of wooden pallets in landfills and this works out to approximately
S$1.50 per 18 kgs pallet. If not, they would have to find storage
space for them on their premises, thus taking up valuable space
and creating an unsightly mess, which posed a fire hazard to
building occupants and property.
The U.S Government and European Union have officially announced
the implementation of stricter import regulations on wood packaging
materials, which would be enforceable in these countries by 2005,
with many other countries set to follow suit. All export shipments
to these countries would now have to comply strictly with the International
Standard for Phytosanitary Measures (ISPM 15) as set out in the International
Plant Protection Convention to eliminate the introduction of foreign pests
to the native environment.
Financial Impact on Exporters and Importers
Pallet users will now have to bear the long-term costs of expensive
and time-consuming heat-treatments, fumigation or chemical treatments
that weaken and shorten the life span of treated wooden pallets.
Shippers and Freight Forwarders facing real difficulties in differentiating
between treated and non-treated pallets suffer the risks of slow
custom clearance, quarantine or worse, denial of entry. As more
and more countries begin enforcement of these standards, heat-treated
wood will become scarce and more expensive, with some countries
charging inspection fees for all wooden pallets.
Why Smart Exporters & Importers are Smiling
Not surprisingly, many savvy pallets users have promptly turned
to Forward Pallet corrugated paper pallets as a viable costs saving
alternative. Equal in strength to wooden pallets but with none
of their disadvantages, they are hugely popular with shippers
and forwarders alike as they are exempted from the new import
regulations and prohibitive treatment costs levied on their wooden
Forward Pallet is in the ideal position to revolutionize the
market with our wide range of competitively priced pallets that
include our flagship heavy-duty (HD) pallet range which is one
of the most advanced in the world, providing the highest payload
of up 3,000 kgs / 3 tons (Dynamic) and 5,000 kgs / 5 tons
Forward Pallet’s pallets are received enthusiastically
by industries that are committed to keeping operating costs
to a minimum, coupled with a strong desire to protect the environment
and enhancing employee safety.