Raw materials for wooden packaging and pallets have continued to rise in the first four months of the year, according to the latest Markit/CIPS report.   

The independent monthly survey of key UK industry sectors shows pallet timber has risen for nine consecutive months and nails have risen for 11 consecutive months. Softwood in general is marked as ‘in short supply’ and up in price for the sixth consecutive month.  

The report shows that pallets increased in price in March and April and reconditioned pallets increased in April. In general, wood products have risen for eight consecutive months, with the cost of material inputs and outputs up 14.6 per cent and 17 per cent respectively on average since 2010.   

Stuart Hex, general secretary of the Timber Packaging and Pallet Confederation (TIMCON) said: “Inflationary pressures have continued to impact on UK industries, including the wooden pallet and packing sector.   

“Nails and wood account for at least 70 per cent of the cost of manufacturing wooden pallets and packaging, so it’s unsurprising that these costs have had an effect on the price of the finished products. TIMCON members have worked with pallet users to absorb the costs, but some price rises have unfortunately been inevitable.  

“This said, wood remains by some distance the most economic material for pallets and packaging. It is also the most re-useable, repairable, recyclable and all round most environmentally sustainable option.”         

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