EPAL Takes Responsibility for Euro Pallet Exchange Pool, Independent of the UIC

As reported earlier at PackagingRevolution.net, the European Pallet Association (EPAL) will be overseeing the EPAL pallet exchange pool without the continued affiliation of the international railway association (UIC). EPAL is, however, leaving the door open for cooperation in the future with UIC or UIC member railways.

After EPAL commissioned Bureau Veritas to supervise quality assurance for the pool in autumn of 2012, UIC rejected the tender, and proceeded to severe relationship with EPAL, without providing a rationale for the parting of company. EPAL stresses that in the cooperative relationship previously held,UIC did not play an operational role with respect to the EPAL pallet pool.

EPAL reports that it subsequently worked toward a continuation of cooperation through meetings with the individual member railways of the UIC, including DB Intermodal Services GmbH and SBB Cargo. In spite of amicable conversations with DB Intermodal Services GmbH and SBB Cargo, the UIC declined an offer to enter negotiations with EPAL.

The board of EPAL, represented by nine European national member associations of EPAL, subsequently agreed unanimously agreed to cease all efforts to continue cooperation with the UIC. Effective August 1, 2013, EPAL states that it shall be solely and independently responsible for the organization of the Euro pallet exchange pool.

EPAL says it continues to offer to the UIC – and especially member railways of the UIC – the potential for future collaboration towards the success of the Euro pallet pool. The separation of EPAL and the UIC will result in no changes. The production and repair of pallets and box pallets by EPAL licence holders still will follow comprehensive quality controls by Bureau Veritas – the independent controlling company commissioned by EPAL.

The EPAL pallet pool is estimated at over 450 million units in size, with production in 2012 reaching 67 million pallets.


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