Are Tracking Challenges Constraining the Reusables Blastoff?

Present Approaches to Reusable Packaging Management Constrain Expansion in Some Applications If you come to a fork in the road, Yogi Berra once said, “take it.” In a nutshell, that is where some reusable pallet and container applications find themselves. A few years ago, USPS was in the spotlight for its high attrition rate of plastic pallets. … [Read more...]

What Came First, The Pallet or the Forklift?

The history of the forklift and the pallet is intertwined. Did the pallet come first, or was it the forklift? This question was posed decades ago by the earliest pallet industry pioneers such as the late Bill Sardo, the first president of the National Wooden Pallet & Container Association and it still comes up today. The correct answer … [Read more...]

Pallet Pools Offer Public Warehouses New Service Opportunities (Historic Reprint)

from D & W, January 1945 is pleased to present another key article from the formative years of palletization. After the war, between one and three million surplus pallets may be disposed of by the government. Commercial shipments of palletized unit loads are expected to become common. Some pooling method for … [Read more...]

If You Can’t Make Some Heat, Get Out of the Kitchen

The title of this piece, a twist on Harry Truman's classic quote about not standing the heat, is a call by business writer John Maxwell for leaders to act proactively and make a difference. But often there are barriers to continuous improvement. One such hurdle is success itself. For reusable pallet and packaging programs as in life, good can be … [Read more...]

Retail Ready Packaging and RTP: A View from the UK

Back in 2010 I posted to a LinkedIn group about retail ready packaging, and in particular, to a story on RRP which is no longer available online. One thing that struck me about the article was that reusable transport packaging was not mentioned explicitly. Back in the 1990s, I commented, it seemed that being shelf ready was one of the enormous … [Read more...]

Reusable Packaging: Is It Really So HARD TO HOLD? (Part 1)

Reusable pallet and container theft - this story first appeared in May 2010, and still contains useful information. (Read a more recent discussion: Prevent reusable asset loss by giving reusables a voice) Reusable Pallets and Containers: Why Do Some Pallet and Container Users Struggle to Maintain Control of Assets? With the headline … [Read more...]

Four Strong Winds: Reusable Transport Packaging Ready for Prime Time?

Updated January 2016 Sudden change, counter-intuitively, is anything but sudden. Just like the old analogy of the lily pads that establish a toehold on a large pond. They diligently yet subtly double every day until on the 28th day they cover one-quarter of the water. On the 29th day they blanket half of it. And on the 30th day they consume the … [Read more...]

Are Reusables Really So…HARD TO HOLD? (Part 2)

To review the first installment od our report on reusable container and pallet theft, click here. The feature continues below. The Importance of Pallet and Container Management in Reducing Loss While theft was found to be at the heart of pallet and container loss for the collaborating Baltimore companies, others believe that poor management … [Read more...]

AIAG Pallet and Lid Survey Reveals Opportunity for Improvement

This article first appeared in 2010. Why is it that the words "pallets" and "problems" are so often found in the same sentence? According to at least one comment from last November's AIAG Call to Action, the analogy fits in the automotive supply chain as well, saying that the challenge of managing reusable pallets and lids is not just a "pain … [Read more...]

A Reference Guide for the Construction and Inspection of Wood Pallets – 1954

This early document provides a detailed look at pallets and pallet technology in the early 1950s. The U.S. Navy was at the forefront of pallet advances during World War 2 and in the years that followed. One interesting post-war switch was from the 40x48" stringer pallet to the 48x40" pallet, likely having to do with better optimizing the conversion … [Read more...]