Pallet Recycling Plants Making a Big Impact

April marks Earth month, a month dedicated to supporting and promoting sustainability and the importance of taking care of our planet. Read on to learn more about how our recycling plants are contributing to a healthier Earth.

Here at 48forty, recycling is a core part of our culture and it requires a team effort to be successful. We reached out to several of our plants who are top recyclers to learn more about their efforts and how they're contributing to a healthier Earth. Read on to learn more about their innovative practices! (Answers have been lightly edited for clarity).

What are the main ways your plant recycles pallets?

Allegheny Recycled Products (APR):

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Everything we do is mostly repair. We repaired 1.5 million pallets last year and closer to 2 million this year. We reuse lumber that we dismantle from the pallets. Everything that doesn’t get reused as a pallet, gets used as mulch. This helps the environment and makes our customers feel better about the pallets they're purchasing.
IMG_3816Industrial Pallet: A majority of the business at Industrial Pallet has always been
48x40 pallet repair. We do a significant amount of remanufactured pallets which
enables us to provide a broader range of customized solutions for our customers. 
In addition to the pallet recycling and remanufactured pallets, we have a wood pellet mill that repurposes all of our scrap wood into wood pellets for home heating. Industrial Pallet also recycles all of our cardboard, plastics, and nails.

Birmingham (1) (1)
Birmingham: We focus on refurbishing pallets into a profitable product for our customers. Any pallets we can't use are recycled through our teardown shop. This tear down process provides the material needed for the facility’s operations. Lastly, any material that cannot be used to meet our customers’ or the facility’s needs will be ground up by our onsite grinder and sent to a local mulching facility. In 2021, we recycled in excess of 2 million pallets. 

Oregon Pallet Birds-eye viewOregon Pallet: We focus on 48x40 repair, and using all of our recycled materials to their best possible use. Our mission statement is to provide quality products and services which allow our customers to operate safely, productively and competitively. Recycling pallets with our focus on the 48x40 repair allows us to fulfill that mission.

How do recycled pallets benefit customers?

APR: They’re cheaper than new. We're recycling instead of buying new ones. We're saving environmental impact by not buying a new pallet. Recycled pallets may cost less, but they're still able to get the job done just as efficiently as brand new pallets, without the cost to the environment.
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Industrial Pallet: Recycled pallets provide a cost-effective platform on which companies can move their manufactured goods to the market. The uniformity and acceptance of the 48x40 white wood pallet through the supply chain reduces costs and increases reliability for manufacturers, retailers, and consumers. Our customers often speak of the value that we bring to their supply chain which has never been more important than in the current business environment. 
By utilizing recycled pallets our customers are able to reduce their carbon footprint, and improve the sustainability of their business. We have proved to be an essential part for our customers in meeting many of their environmental goals.
Birmingham: The largest benefit is cost. A recycled pallet will always provide an extremely higher value than a newly created pallet. As an added benefit, our pallet management system provides our customers value by allowing us to maintain their entire pallet supply chain from end to end for. Customers don't have to worry about their pallet stream, they can focus on driving and growing their businesses in other ways.
Birmingham (3)
 Antioch: Recycled pallets benefit customers in many ways, from reducing production costs and landfill waste, to conserving natural resources.
Oregon Pallet: Recycled pallets are more economical, need less lead time, and generally have a more stable price point. To us, this is widely important as it gives our customers a different option than what they may traditionally be used to.
Nearly everything sold in the United States goes on a pallet. How do you feel about the big environmental impact of your work at 48forty?
APR:  I think it’s pretty amazing when you start adding up the sheer value of what we do and the pallets we sell – it has a huge environmental impact. It’s pretty cool that our industry is in the middle of the supply chain and we can get all of the products out to our customers in a sustainable way.
Industrial Pallet: Our team has always taken a lot of pride in our positive impact on the environment. Our acquisition by 48forty Solutions allows us to further expand our reach and scope in the market to have an even greater impact. It gives us greater ability to support, collaborate and access, and to resources that not only help Industrial Pallet improve our environmental impact, but also the customers who trust us with their business each day.
Birmingham (4) (1)
Birmingham: Pallets are and always will be a main platform for shipping products. We would rather refurb pallets and recycle as much material as possible. Through consistent best practices here at our facility, the less we have to send to the landfills, the cleaner our environment will be for the future.
Antioch: Wooden pallets are one of the most sustainable and reusable items in the supply chain industry.
It's a privilege that in our day to day work, we play a key role in reducing waste and protecting our environment.

Oregon Pallet:It feels great to work with a company that supports our complete utilization of recycled materials and allows for our ongoing passion for sustainability.Oregon Pallet Team #2

In 2021 alone, 48forty repaired, recycled and reissued nearly 125 million pallets. That's equivalent to saving 12 million trees, diverting approximately 2.5 million tons of used lumber from landfills, and avoiding approximately 1 million metric tons of GHG emissions (CO2-E).

Congratulations to our top recycling plants! Thank you for taking the time to share more about your efforts and commitment to environmental stewardship. While we focus on providing customers with cost-efficient, sustainable solutions, our efforts do not stop there. Fill out our environmental impact calculator to see the impact you can have by using recycled pallets. 
environmental impact calculator