First Alliance Logistics Management is a full-service logistics provider offering solutions for a variety of industries. The Food & Pharmaceutical industries have some of the highest sanitation standards and rightfully so; to uphold the quality standards in protecting consumers.
The National Wooden Pallet and Container Association (NWPCA) maintains that wooden pallets are a safe method for transporting pharmaceutical and food goods. Wooden pallets are commonly used in shipping packaged cans, boxes, or other packaging where the pallet doesn’t come into direct contact with unpackaged food. Wooden pallets have also proven to be the lowest cost shipping option compared to metal and plastic pallets.
First Alliance Logistics has successfully helped shippers utilize wooden pallets by ensuring that they are structurally sound, dry, clean, and free from damage and/or contamination. Our teams have developed processes to ensure that pallets are kept dry and clean until they are delivered to the customer’s facility. The monitoring and quality controls are in place to ensure that the pallets remain sanitized and safe before they are placed under load. Other pallet treatments are beneficial in the higher sanitation environments with the use of heat-treat and kiln-drying processes that eliminates insects or lower moisture contents in wooden pallets.
There have been work-a-rounds where pharmaceutical manufacturers receive raw materials on new, wooden pallets. The raw materials are then transferred over to plastic pallets prior to entering the facility, which are sanitized before bringing goods into the manufacturing facility. On the other end of the production process, some manufacturers bring finished goods out of their plant on plastic pallets and then transfer the products to new, wooded pallets for final shipment to the customer. In this innovative manner, the manufacturer may have control over the sanitation of their processing environment while receiving long-term value from wooden pallets as their primary shipping platform.