The History of the Wooden Pallet

With so much merchandise at our fingertips, we often take for granted that products are so readily available. The truth is, that those products probably wouldn’t be accessible if it wasn’t for the packaging and transport process that got them there.

While they rarely get a second thought, wooden pallets play an invaluable role in our economy, thanks to their affordable, sustainable and convenient benefits. Consequently, they are commonplace in goods transportation around the world.

Here, we take a brief look at their history and why they are such a fantastic invention.

In the early 1920s, when the forklift was invented, the way things were stored and moved began to change and the industry adapted. Boxes, kegs and barrels were going out of fashion, and the industry looked for a fresh approach.

Boards became more widely used and they were often put on the top of stringers to make skids, a single deck loading platform. These low-profile mobile platforms simply rested on pedestals attached to the deck.

It wasn’t until around 1930 that boards were added to the bottom of the skid, which signalled the arrival of the modern, double faced pallet. The new structure offered improved weight distribution, better ease of use and enhanced product protection.

During World War Two, distribution between allied countries increased and as a result, so did the use of pallets. What once would have taken days of unloading, now took just a few hours. Subsequently, thousands of companies began to see the importance and benefits of pallets, and they became a well-loved business staple.

As the usage of pallets in goods transportation grew, so did the development of the pallet truck. They now work hand in hand to save time, make life easier and increase productivity.

Available in a range of sizes and styles, wooden pallets are an integral part of a company’s product transport system and provide a cheap, easy to use and sustainable solution. With so many benefits, it is clear to see that the use of wooden pallets will only increase, and that they are here for good.

At Nicklin, we are the UK’s longest established timber and corrugated transit packaging provider. Trading since 1913, we offer a range of services and have an extensive product range that includes: bespoke pallets, timber cases, timber crates, plywood cases, corrugated cases and timber components. Please visit our website for more information.