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Wooden pallet users have been hearing about timber shortages and resulting steep price rises for eight months with costs now being passed on to customers. We are getting to a point when we need to ask how this will end.
Global demand for timber is high and here in the UK, national timber forestry is low compared to other parts of Europe, making the equation hard to balance. The UK imports 80% of its timber and pallet timber prices are now said to be up to £215 per cubic metre: that means UK pallet timber has risen close to 40% in the last six months. The Timber Packing and Pallet Confederation (TIMCON) reported record turnout at their general meeting recently, with concerned members of the sector turning out to hear how this hunger for timber during a worldwide and ‘unprecedented’ shortage could be met. Are long term supply contracts and price increases the long and the short of it?
We can plant more trees – it’s another longer term option that doesn’t help companies who need new pallets tomorrow. The situation has led to forests in Scotland selling for up to £8.5million each, with reports that some types of timber are coming onto the market at much higher values than have ever been seen previously, inflating the attraction of farmers diversifying into farm forestry. All this while the price of plastic pallets – many of which are made form recycled plastics from homes and businesses – has remained constant.
Companies using plastic pallets avoid the uncertainty being experienced in the wooden pallet arena. The move from wood to plastic brings further stability to an organisation, as the strength and durability of plastic pallets means they remain in circulation far longer than wooden pallets, with the costs and time spent repairing bypassed as a result. For exporters, the appeal of plastic pallets is magnified by the fact they are exempt from the customs regulations covering wooden pallets and the heat treatments they require. Plastic is easy to clean and maintain and when a plastic pallet reaches the end of its life, it can be reground to begin its time again as a new pallet, offering many more years of service as a durable, hygienic and cost-effective solution.
Goplasticpallets.com is the UK’s leading independent supplier of plastic pallets with 160 different varieties to choose from, many available for next day delivery. For expert pallet advice, call our team on 01323 744057 or email your enquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Eight Months of Soaring Timber Price Rises: When Will It End?