The UK construction industry gets through 18m wooden pallets annually, most of which are used only once. This firm has a solution
An innovation targeting the wasting of pallets in construction has won support from some of the sector’s key players.
Some 18m wooden pallets – requiring a total 6,000 acres of forestry – are manufactured for use by the UK’s building industry each year. But estimates suggest 90 per cent are used only once and make up a tenth of the sector’s waste stream.
Now, The Pallet LOOP – a joint venture between leading pallet manufacturer Scott Group and brothers Paul and Ryan Lewis – aims to target that waste and help the construction sector to meet green targets set by the UK government.
The initiative uses distinctive green pallets, which are built to be twice as strong as traditional designs. Building material manufacturers will pay a deposit to use LOOP pallets, with the fee moving through the supply chain to builders’ merchants and, finally, to end users.
Deposits are redeemed in full when pallets are collected, when they are recirculated back into the supply chain.
Those at The Pallet LOOP say widespread adoption of their system across the sector would cut CO2 emissions by 40 per cent and timber use by three-quarters.
Several large firms, including Wilmott Dixon, BAM Construction and the Morgan Sindall Group, have signed a charter committing to evaluating how their businesses can use The Pallet LOOP to cut waste.
Image: The Pallet LOOP