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Tips for Businesses Generating Pallets

CONTACT local government waste management departments

Some local governments (counties and municipalities) may be able to offer assistance and possibly a local drop-off location for wooden pallets. It is an important step for pallet generators to contact their county solid waste and recycling office to see what help or services may be available. 

FIND a pallet recycling market

Pallets can be recycled by a number of different type markets, ranging from reuse and repair to grinding for mulch or boiler fuel. The N.C. Recycling Markets Directory lists pallets recyclers. Small quantities of pallets may be listed for free on the NC WasteTrader waste exchange.

STANDARDIZE pallet size

Standardizing pallet sizes promotes reuse and recycling. Some pallets are more recyclable and reusable than others and are, therefore, more valuable. Pallet generators should assess and possibly be prepared to change the kinds of pallets they receive or use. Pallet recycling companies are good sources of information regarding the most desirable types of pallets. Generally, the most attractive is a standard "GMA 48 x 40 pallet."

Use high-quality pallets and REPAIR in-house

Companies that use high-quality re-buildable pallets also can save as much as $3 to $4 per pallet by repairing them in-house. High-quality pallets are easier to repair and more likely to be repaired and reused repeatedly. The cost per trip of higher quality pallets tends to be lower than cheap pallets because high-quality pallets can withstand more trips before repair is needed.

WEIGH other pallet management options

In addition to pallet reduction and recycling options discussed above, pallet generators may also consider utilizing third-party management in which pallets are rented from a pallet management company on a per-trip basis. Pallets may also be traded with other companies or made available through waste exchanges such as NC WasteTrader.

Local Government Assistance Team Contacts