The Complete Buyer's Guide to Plastic Pallets

Plastic pallets have become the cornerstone of sustainable, green supply chain management (GSCM). Their efficiency, durability, and cost-effectiveness has earned them the support of environmentalists, distributors, and economists alike. Today, plastic pallets are made by hundreds of companies worldwide. Unlike wood pallets, plastic pallets provide a wide selection of styles, sizes, and features. To assist you purchase the most effective plastic pallets for your organization, here's the definitive buyer's guide to plastic pallets.

Structural Styles

Pallets with length-wise, structurally supportive runners tend to be known as “rackable” or “rack-compatible” pallets. Having skid runners in place of feet enables rackable pallets to span the width of industrial storage racks and shelving. Naturally, rackable pallets can be stacked or rest on the floor. Rackable pallets are generally one of the strongest options on the market, but that strength generally comes with additional weight and material costs. They're necessary for rack storage and perfect for warehouses, stores, and general product storage.

Nestable Pallets

The nestability of many plastic pallets is just a huge advantage over traditional wood pallets. Designed with concave, cupped feet, these pallets nest inside each other when empty. This nesting provides incredible space efficiency, which could save a lot of money on return shipping and storage. While a conventional wood pallet may require more than six inches of vertical space, a nestable pallet can often require significantly less than an inch when nested inside another pallet. Which means that while several wood pallets may waste around six feet of vertical space, that same space could be filled with an increase of than 60 nestable pallets.

Stackable Pallets

Stack of plastic palletsMany plastic pallet descriptions include the word “stackable.” What this implies is that those pallets were created with features that enable safe and secure stacking. The design of the features can range. Nestable pallets are inherently stackable, because of their cupped feet. Other stackable designs may incorporate a small lip or edge along the top of the pallet that matches a corresponding groove or slot along the bottom. Heightened plastic pallet designs may feature entire deck tops that interlock with underneath runners of other pallets. Whatever design technology is employed, the finish answers are pallets that securely stack together — helping to get rid of the clutter and risks related to precarious stacks of wooden pallets.

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