Pallet wrap is a plastic film used to secure goods to a wooden or plastic pallet during transit, for example during distribution from a regional warehouse to a specific retail outlet. Millions of pallets are wrapped in the UK everyday and around 150,000 tonnes of pallet wrap are purchased in the RSA every year.
However for the major retailers pallet wrap is seen only as a cost, there is no added value for them in pallet wrap, it is a secondary packaging that does not reach the consumer, and therefore does not carry a branding message or create a desire for purchase, unlike other types of packaging, such as tins and cartons.
Cost reduction is therefore a very close second to quality when it comes to the criteria for changing suppliers of pallet wrap. Many companies try to do this through price, getting a cheaper price per reel, but rarely trying to change the specification of the film they use. This is especially the case for those customers who do not deal direct with a manufacturer, as the re-seller they use may lack some of the in-depth technical knowledge of a manufacturer.
So what is the best solution for cost reduction, whilst maintaining a quality product? Well it certainly is not a reduction in the price per reel of film, in fact it can be the exact opposite sometimes, the price of the reel may go up. The key to getting the most for your money in stretch film terms is yield or put simply how many pallets can you wrap with that one reel.
The best product for this is a pre-stretch film, which is 8 micron, which is much thinner than conventional films that generally come in at 14mu +. The film is stretched by the manufacturer unlike conventional films which are stretched by the user, and obviously the human hand cannot offer the consistent stretch of modern machinery. This means that less weight of film is needed to wrap each pallet, therefore making this type of film more effective.
The reason for this is simple, all pallet wrap stretch film is sold by weight - however you buy your film it is always worked back into price per tonne - and pre stretch, although more expensive per tonne, offers up to 40% more yield, making it much more cost effective. The future of the market is pre-stretch and on from that Coreless pre-stretch which eliminates the need for cardboard waste, but that is for another day!