November-December 2015

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16 PalletCentral • November-December 2015 he ghosts from A Christmas Carol painted a story of what was, could be, or might be. Yes, Ebenezer Scrooge encountered some grim scenes, but also positive predictions. At PalletCentral, we think 2016 will end like the story — on a positive note. But, there are important lessons and opportunities to be learned as we'll hear from pallet industry leaders of past, present and future to tell us their story. Block pallets will dominate the pallet market discussion. As demands for efficiencies grow and the availability of cores diminish, there is room for block pallets to provide additional cost per trip pallet solutions. —Joe O'Brien, Industrial Pallet, LLC Vendors continue to invest in R&D to develop pallets that are environmentally friendly, recyclable, and reusable. Among the factors influencing purchase decisions, strength and durability are considered the most important. Pallets are designed and developed to ensure multiple trips in the supply chain process. The main effort of vendors has been toward shifting from single-trip pallets to multiple-trip pallets. —Research analyst, Pallet Market in the US 2016-2020 Pallet demand to continue rising. Right now, the pallet industry is going well. Lumber is available and demand for pallets is up. As the economy keeps improving, the increase in consumer spending is keeping pallet demand on the rise. —Matt Yancey, Dominion Pallet Company, Inc. Order shall be restored, and the need for new and used pallets will balance evenly once again. With the steady rise in price for used pallets, there has become a decrease in price for new pallets in order to get them off the proverbial shelves. We will see more and more companies switch back to new pallets because of the competitive pricing. The core shortage we are experiencing will lessen by the end of 2016 because of this trend, and the level of prices will move to equate supply and demand. —Mia Allen, Rose Pallet Shor tage of labor will worsen. Pallet manufacturing is hard work. We struggle with obtaining qualified candidates that simply have to pass a physical and drug screening. Due to our zero tolerance policy, most candidates do not even show up to our industrial clinic for these two items. Retaining those that do get hired is proving to be more and more difficult. We pay competitive wages, have great benefit packages, and always make sure our employees know they are our #1 asset. This used to be enough. We are now testing a retention bonus program in our facilities, so stay tuned. —Raymond Gutierrez, Commercial Lumber and Pallet Company, Inc. It is incredibly hard to hire good workers and expect them to show up every day. For every ten people hired, there may be only two or three keepers. If the Republicans succeed in their plans for immigration reform by returning many hard working people back home, the labor pool will dwindle. Immigrants are keeping a lot of pallet companies and saw mills productive. —Matt Yancey, Dominion Pallet Company, Inc. We will experience continued growth during 2016. The economy is poised to advance and we have trimmed some deadwood within the industry. However, I am concerned about the lack of available skilled workers. —Larry Konz, Konz Wood Products E xpect trucking related costs to continue to rise. The age of the average driver is increasing and the younger generation hasn't been getting behind the wheel. Quality drivers are becoming more expensive. The cost of new and quality used trailers Industry Thought Leaders from the Past, Present & Future Make Predictions for 2016 Make Predictions for 2016 T T

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