Pallets continue to serve their age-old purpose of transporting goods throughout the supply chain, but the latest versions of these supermarket stalwarts are taking their trusted role to a whole new level.
Today’s pallet providers are working closer than ever before with their manufacturer and retailer partners to help address labor challenges, increase visibility and transportation efficiencies, meet sustainability goals, and even help position retailers against new competition.
JeffLiebesman, CEO of Orlando, Fla.-based pallet-pooling company iGPS Logistics, explains the change in how pallet companies see themselves today.
“For quite some time, pallet manufacturing was viewed through what we see now was an overly simplistic approach to cost cutting,” he says. “This ultimately benefited pallet manufacturers more than the customers they served. A race for the cheapest pallet also meant a race for the lowest-quality pallet, which produces increased costs for distributors and retailers via lost or damaged product, higher transport and cleanup costs, a shorter pallet lifespan, and higher risk of worker injury, to name a few. What we’re seeing today and in the past few years in pallet development is a more comprehensive view of the supply chain, so that pallet customers receive the lowest total cost of business, rather than pay more for problems caused by inferior pallets.”
At iGPS, new pallet capabili