The Timber Packaging and Pallet Confederation (TIMCON) has continued to carry out internationally acclaimed work on behalf of its members, the industry association’s annual general meeting was told this month.
This includes the development of a new independent guide to drying wooden pallets, which has been produced as the result of a study carried out by Napier University. It will soon be provided free of charge to TIMCON members, and follows TIMCON’s first guide, for users of wooden pallets.
TIMCON President John Dye was unable to attend the agm at short notice so General Secretary Stuart Hex read the President’s annual address to the meeting. Dye highlighted the pallet drying guidance initiative as another example of the vital work TIMCON is carrying out on behalf of its membership, and one of the reasons for the continuing central role the association has in international developments in the timber pallet and packaging sector.
“Having personally discussed the timber drying project in Europe and in the US,” he said, “I am once again pleased and proud to inform you that TIMCON’s work has again led the way. Both FEFPEB and NWPCA members are very keen for us to share the methodology of the study.”
In his address, Dye also highlighted that TIMCON, through its newly formed technical subcommittee, is working closely with the Health & Safety Executive.“Recently, there has been a document written up regarding stacking heights of pallets,” he said, “and our subcommittee and John Harvey (PalletLink) were involved in ensuring that what was being proposed was achievable, necessary and commercially viable.
“The committee has also had input into the proposed revision of the PM 15 document for pallet handling and attends meetings of the Wood Safety Group.”
Delegates at the agm heard further updates on the situation regarding prices, availability and supply of timber in the UK from Ian Pirie, Managing Director of James Jones Ltd, and internationally from Heikki Vidgren of Poyry. They also took part in a discussion about the market, with input from manufacturers, sawmillers and pallet pools chaired by TIMCON’s immediate Past President Gil Covey.
In his address, Dye said that in the past year strong improvements in the construction industry, while good news for the economy, would continue to exert pressure on the availability of timber for the manufacture of pallets and packaging. Price rises are inevitable, he said, although he called on sawmillers to consider the ongoing importance of the pallet and packaging sector as a customer.
It was clear from the wide ranging discussion that the forecast buoyant demand for construction and fencing timber in the UK will continue to exert pressure on timber supply and prices to the pallet and packaging industry. There are some signs that the market is starting to moderate, which is very important as it is vital to offer stability to clients and also for the UK timber industry to remain the most competitive option.
At the agm it was announced that TIMCON past president, BREPAL’s Paul Davidson, was stepping down as a member of TIMCON’s Executive Committee, after many years’ valued service. His achievements while part of the organisation include his sterling work on the Packaging Waste Directive with DEFRA.
The meeting was held in Bristol in May and included dinner aboard the SS Great Britain.