Across every industry, one thing is true in all warehouses: product needs to move as quickly, efficiently, and cost-effectively as possible. Warehouse managers in fast-growing markets, such as the hemp industry, often feel enormous pressure to save time and money—all while staying as eco-friendly as possible.
Corrugated pallets are one way to make work easier for yourself and your team. Although corrugated pallets aren’t exactly new to the warehouse scene—in fact, they were introduced nearly 40 years ago—they’ve become increasingly popular in warehouse settings because they offer several big benefits compared to traditional wood pallets.
Types of Corrugated Pallets
Corrugated pallets, which are sometimes just called paper pallets, are made from paperboard sheets, corrugated material, and other reinforced paper goods, instead of wood.
There are three main types of paper pallets:
- Standard corrugated paper pallets: These are a popular alternative to wood and plastic pallets. They are specially engineered to be super strong yet lightweight.
- Bulk bag pallets: These pallets are designed to support FIBC bulk bags. They allow you to stably and safely stack heavy bulk bags.
- Round pallets: Unlike wood pallets, paper pallets provide a lot more flexibility with shape and design. Round pallets are great for displaying products with easy 360-degree visibility.
Benefits of Corrugated Pallets
Corrugated pallets make warehouse life easier in several ways, from improved safety to easy disposal. Here are some of the top benefits of corrugated pallets.
Better Use of Warehouse Space
Paper pallets provide maximum load capability up to 10,000 pounds, compared to 4,600 pounds for a standard wooden pallet—all thanks to some serious engineering genius. This lets you stack products more efficiently. Plus, paper pallets can be easily stored, prior to use, in racking and without the danger associated with wood pallets.
Corrugated pallets weigh between 8-15 pounds, which is about one-third the weight of a traditional wooden pallet. Lighter pallets mean you spend less money on freight and fuel and can add more product per shipment. Plus, paper pallets can be customized to your required level of durability, so you’re not spending money on strength that you don’t actually need.
Paper pallets help prevent injury because they are lighter, easier to handle, and made of... well, paper. Wood pallets, on the other hand, are heavy, built with nails or staples, and are quick to splinter. Simply dropping a wood pallet can cause hearing injuries in a warehouse setting.
Paper pallets are fully customizable for shape, size, and durability, including weight loads, sizes, and stack heights. The ability to customize pallets allows you to fit more product into each shipment, which reduces dead space and saves money. Within the warehouse, using pallets that are customized to your needs helps your team move and stack product more efficiently.
Optimized Use of Bulk Bags
Bulk bags are the best option for storing and shipping a variety of products, but they can be unwieldy, requiring extra time and care to move and stack. You can save loading time and reduce shipping costs by using corrugated pallets that are specifically designed to support FIBC bulk bags.
Stability is key here; when a corrugated pallet is engineered with bulk bags in mind, it becomes much easier to stack, store, and ship bulk bags. The special design of the bulk bag pallet creates a type of “tunnel” between stacked bags, which easily accommodates a forklift tine and prevents accidental damage to the bags. Paper pallets also have a much lower profile than wood ones and take up less space, allowing for more payload per shipment.
Corrugated pallets are much easier and cheaper to dispose of than wood pallets. They are fully recyclable, and they can be baled right alongside other recyclable materials, saving time and letting your workers move on to other tasks. Paper pallets make it easy to get closer to your recycling or zero waste goals. In fact, back in the 1990s, General Motors decided to require all deliveries to 62 of its facilities to use paper pallets, which helped it achieve $2 billion in recycling revenue, according to GreenBiz.
As more companies realize the benefits of corrugated pallets, we’re seeing them become increasingly popular with wholesalers and in the following industries:
- Chemicals and pharmaceuticals
- Metal and machinery
Get to Know Paper Pallets
Working in a warehouse presents a whole host of challenges. Having to deal with heavy, costly, and, at times, dangerous wood pallets can only make a demanding job more difficult.
Corrugated pallets can make your job easier, eliminating many of the problems you have probably experienced with wood pallets. Find out more about paper pallets—and whether they are a good fit for your operations—in our guide, Everything You Need to Know About Paper Pallets.