SOURCE: European Pallet Association e.V.

November 25, 2014 13:43 ET

The First Step Has Been Taken: the Common European Pallet Pool Agreement Has Been Concluded; The Settlement Between EPAL and UIC Has Finally Been Signed and Sealed

DUSSELDORF, GERMANY--(Marketwired - Nov 25, 2014) - The European Pallet Association e.V. has always declared itself in favour of continuing with common exchangeability, despite the fact that the UIC broke away from EPAL in December 2012. The approach taken by EPAL has been supported by GS1, leading German trade associations, ARGE Palettenpool, the majority of pallet users and the licensees. With the signing of the agreement regarding the Common European Pallet Pool, the UIC is now following this example.

A functioning market requires trust and EPAL has gained this from producers, repairers and users over the past two years. The numbers speak for themselves with the production of EPAL pallets having remained stable over this period, despite attempts by the UIC to establish a second "white" pallet pool and despite the weakening markets. On the contrary, the first "EPAL/EPAL" calendar year has drawn to a close recording significant growth with the number of EPAL pallets produced in *2013 amounting to 63.5 million (*total 2013: since 01/08/2013 EPAL/EPAL pallets only), and as of November 2014 to 64 million. Furthermore, new markets for EPAL licences have also been won in Hungary, the Czech Republic, Croatia and parts of Austria.

The European Pallet Association e.V. has always recognised its market responsibilities and in recent years it worked on further developing the load carriers and their quality assurance. This includes innovative solutions that have been put into practice by EPAL in 2014, such as the production of a new half pallet, RFID-tagged pallets and the development of a pallet app (in collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute). It also includes monitoring compliance with trademark law and any legal action as an essential tool for ensuring a stable, global pallet pool. The opening of the EPAL Academy in July 2014 is yet another milestone in making the use of EPAL pallets reliable and profitable.

The current agreement between EPAL and the UIC marks the first step, but the real challenges of the market lie on the other side of the negotiating table: global growth requires well functioning structures. This is why EPAL has made the offer to the UIC of taking on the overall organisation of the world's largest open pallet pool, including external quality control audits by an independent certification organisation. "The ball now lies in the UIC's court," says Martin Leibrandt, CEO of the European Pallet Association e.V.

EPAL:

The European Pallet Association e.V. (EPAL) was founded in 1991 as the umbrella association of licensed producers and repairers of EPAL/EUR-pallets and box pallets. EPAL is globally responsible for the consistent quality of the EPAL load carriers and therefore uses an independent external quality inspection service. EPAL has been granting exclusive licenses for the production and repair of euro pallets with the "EPAL in oval" branded marking on four corner blocks since 1st August 2013. EPAL is currently represented in more than thirty countries by fourteen National Committees which have committed themselves to implementing the EPAL objectives on a national basis. As a registered association, EPAL does not pursue any commercial interests and makes all its decisions in the interests of its industry, trade and logistics partners.

Contact Information

  • For further press information:

    European Pallet Association e.V.
    Andrea Engels
    Tel.: (+49) (211) 98 480 48 80
    Mobile: (+49 (172) 69 325 95
    Email: andrea.engels@epal-pallets.org