Towards a Pallet-Free World

Palletized Material

Palletized materials handling represents a major drag on business profits and a significant contribution to pollution worldwide. The world is going pallet-free and Repsco is leading that conversion.

It is estimated that there are over 5 billion wood pallets in the world today and 2 billion in the U.S. alone. Not only does that represent the consumption of countless trees – mostly scarce hardwood varieties – but most nations require wood pallets to be chemically treated to eliminate biohazards. That requires millions of gallons of toxic chemicals and drastically reduces the recyclability of those pallets.


Did you know…?

  • 6% of total US lumber production (and nearly half of the hardwood production) is consumed in making pallets.
  • If you eliminate 11 wood pallets from your supply chain, you save one tree.
  • Non-toxic industrial waste runs over 7.6 billion tons per year in the US alone, and the US is one of the more environmentally-conscious countries.
  • 25 countries have designed environmentally friendly packaging requirements, and over 30 require packaging reporting and levy disposal fees.
  • Germany holds all shippers responsible for the disposal of any packaging material, effectively eliminating the use of one-way pallets.
  • The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) requires pallets to be bark and pest-free.
  • The California Integrated Waste Management Board endorses slip sheet use.

In 2005 the USDA implemented the international standard for wood packaging material that was approved by the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC). The IPPC standard calls for most wood packaging material to be either heat treated or fumigated with methyl bromide in accordance with the Guidelines and marked with an approved international mark certifying that treatment.

This rule affects all persons using wood packaging material in connection with importing goods into the United States.