PIMS – The New Pallet Industry Pallet Pool Initiative

PIMS, the new not-for-profit pallet pool organization formed by members of the U.S. pallet industry, has launched a website, www.pimspallet.com (now known as 9BLOC).

The rationale behind the formation of this new pool is at least in part to address some of the key issues with the legacy white wood pool – quality defficiencies and pallet style. Increasingly, pallet users are requesting block style pallets, and the continued development of automated warehousing is putting a larger emphasis on better quality pallets.

PIMS (the founding acronym for Pallet Information Management System) hopes to harness an infrastructure of over  5,000-plus U.S. pallet businesses who already service the largest informal pallet pool in the world – the current white wood system. These entrepreneurs service the U.S. pallet market through manufacture, collection, repair and recycling.

PIMS borrows elements of other international cooperative pools, including EPAL and CPC. For example, like both pools, it is a not-for-profit organization, budgeted on a break-even basis. As in EPAL, pallet manufacturers and repairers will be required to join the program, and participate in 3rd party quality audits. And like for CPC, there would be a pallet management component to the pool management system, with the tracking system provided by PIMS. As in CPC, the Board would be a collaboration between pallet service providers and pallet users.

PIMS says that it seeks to create a system that organizes the wood pallet industry – manufacturers and recyclers, harnessing the power of the effective, efficient industry pool that is already a tremendously powerful resource to end users. PIMS’ objective is to maintain the independence of each participating pallet company, while establishing a collaborative framework with national reach to serve the needs of even the largest end users, distribution centers and retailers. It is designed to:

  • Streamline the flow of pallets within a customer’s network
  • Standardize and coordinate a program to contain system-­‐wide costs
  • Eliminate inefficiencies in pallet handling
  • Provide a timely and consistent replenishment program
  • Provide system-­‐wide inventory control, forecasting and planning of pallet movement
  • Turn the essential pallet from a perceived liability into a genuine asset for customers

For more information, visit www.pimspallet.com.

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  1. I’ve recently reviewed the PIMS web site, and am confused by the statements made regarding how the process “works”. Who “owns” the pallets? If I am a shipper, how do I estimate my trip costs?

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