Reusable Packaging News September 2017 - Page 15

Reusable Packaging News

Source: Peerless Research Group

What’s Behind “Other?”

A few of the slides show growth in the “other” category and could portend to more interesting shifts in pallet usage.

For example, the last slide in Dr. White’s presentation shows the percentage of respondents shipping to well-known national retailers such as Walmart, Costco, Target and Home Depot, etc. With just a few exceptions, notably Sears, the percentage of respondents shipping to each of these retailers, seems to be subtly down in 2017. The list, he notes, includes only bricks & mortar retailers. The “other” line for national retailers, however, shows solid double-digit growth in 2017, which he suggests could be due to the increasing importance of e-commerce providers such as Amazon.

The other significant takeaway identified by Dr. White is also in the “other” category. It pertains to the response to the question, As a result of any problems with used wood pallets, what options have you considered? “Other” jumps from 25% (2016) to 30% in 2017, Dr. White offers that it might indicate a growing interest in third party management providers. As opposed to pallet rental providers, which typically own the pallets and rent them to pallet users on a per-trip or per-day basis, third party pallet management providers typically offer management support for pallet user owned pallets. They provide services such as pallet design and procurement, quality control, inventory control and management, pickup, sorting and repair, as well as relocation. (Read The Super Power of Corporate Pallet Program Management.) This observation is supported by a slide that appears in the Modern Materials Handling print article, which shows The Pallet Alliance (16%), 9Bloc (16%) and Ongweoweh (11%) as pallet management options being considered by readers.