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Aus Retailers Hoarding Shipping Pallets Ahead Of Xmas

Australia’s two major suppliers of reusable wooden pallets are blaming retailers and manufacturers for hoarding the crucial shipping items ahead of the Christmas rush.

CEOs from Woolworths and Coles are both seeing the impacts of pallet shortages; Coles boss Steven Cain referred to “pallet-gate” as being a huge supply chain issue during Victoria’s lockdown, with wood-shortages adding to the logjam.

CHEP Australia and Loscam are the two biggest pallet suppliers. They both say that retailers are stockpiling goods in fear of future shortages, and the pallets, which are usually returned to the suppliers to be redistributed, are remaining in these warehouses.

Further to this, manufacturers and retailers are hoarding the pallets, moving them between their own stores and factories.

“A short-term consequence of this is that substantially fewer pallets are returning to our service centres for onward supply,” CHEP Australia managing director Lis Mannes said in a statement.

She urged CHEP customers provide “urgent co-operation and support in addressing this issue”, noting “a growing trend to both hoard pallets” and “circumvent the usual flows in the shared pooling model.”