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Pallet LOOP charter gathers pace

More companies have stepped up and signed The Pallet LOOP’s charter – committing to explore how a circular economy pallet scheme could benefit their business, the environment, and the UK construction industry as a whole. Marshalls, SISK, Countryside, Tobermore and the Wolseley Group are among the latest organisations to get in the LOOP and throw their support behind the team that is working to reduce the consumption of single-use pallets and switch the sector to a distribution model founded on the principles of recover, repair and reuse.

News of The Pallet LOOP’s launch has been warmly received across the construction sector as companies throughout the building materials supply chain look to step up their sustainability efforts.

Back in November, The Pallet LOOP announced its plans to transform the distribution of building materials nationwide. Aligned with the UK’s ambition of net zero by 2030, and due for operational roll out later this year, The Pallet LOOP’s aim is to eliminate avoidable pallet waste in the construction by incentivising pallet returns via a cost-effective, easy-to-use, deposit-based system. Estimates suggest that up to 10% of the construction waste stream is currently made up of pallets, which is costly from both a financial and an environmental perspective.

Commenting on Marshalls’ reasons for signing The Pallet LOOP charter, John Davies, Sustainability Improvement Director at Marshalls PLC, said: “As well as focusing on achieving net zero by 2030, we’re always looking at ways to reduce our waste and recycle [and reuse] more, and a circular approach to our pallet use is something we’re very interested in exploring.”

Sarah-Jane Davies, Sustainability Manager for UK & Group Civils at John Sisk & Son Ltd, said: “The Pallet LOOP supports our strategic objective to successfully embed circular economy principles into our operations by 2023, as part of our 2030 Sustainability Roadmap. At Sisk we fully endorse this circular economy model to encourage the reuse of pallets in the construction sector, moving away from the single use discard routine which has previously been adopted.”

Phil Dent, CEO at The Pallet LOOP, said: “With sustainability now top of the agenda for most companies across the construction industry, the launch of The Pallet LOOP is incredibly timely – and we’ve been having some very productive conversations. The last year has seen a tangible shift in the way we all think about the environment. Businesses and consumers now recognise what needs to be done to get climate change under control – and realise that it can’t happen in isolation. That theme leaps out from the conversations we’ve been having.”

“As with safety, there is a common consensus that we can’t compete on sustainability and that the solution lies in working together to drive change. It’s an exciting time for the team at The Pallet LOOP and I’d like to thank everyone that’s stepped forward to embrace the idea of a circular economy pallet solution. As we move towards the roll out of our green pallets later this year, we look forward to continuing our work with all of our signatories, wider industry stakeholders and trade associations.”

Every year an estimated 18 million pallets are manufactured for the UK construction industry, with less than 10% currently reused. The Pallet LOOP is on a mission to change this. Delivering a more sustainable pallet distribution model, which is greener and leaner, the scheme is aligned with environmental targets set for the sector by UK Government, and the growing desire and need for businesses to adopt circular economy practices that are more environmentally friendly.

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