Wooden packaging

The Wooden Packaging product group brings together the manufacturers of:

  • crates,
  • pallets,
  • dunnage
  • cable reels.

In addition to products with standardised dimensions, such as EPAL pallets, a lot of made-to-measure work is produced in this sector. For example, there are companies that safely pack, stow and ship large machinery and parts, and manufacture pallets tailored to the goods being transported. As wood is the perfect reusable material, many repairers of used pallets and used packaging also fall under this sub-sector.

012 VERPAKKING KEULEERS IMG 0738 Keuleers & Co
In the global logistics chain, wooden pallets and packaging guarantee quality, safety and sustainability.

Wooden pallets and packaging – Central role in the Green Deal

One of the objectives of the European Green Deal is to encourage and promote circularity and recyclability, with a particular focus on packaging. These are two themes that are a perfect match with wooden packing materials. For example, not only is the latter produced from a natural renewable raw material – obviously 'wood' – but the reuse and repair of pallets greatly extends their lifespan. This takes place in open or closed pools or specific customer-oriented systems. In addition, 'wood gives oxygen': the carbon from the CO2 remains bound in the wood. Wood remains available as a raw material for subsequent reprocessing into e.g. wood-based panels.

05 VERP PGS bewerkt DSC01890 PGS Group

Raw material availability remains an issue

The availability of wood raw material presented some additional challenges for wood packaging and pallet manufacturers in 2022. After the high demand for timber during the coronavirus crisis, with correspondingly higher prices, supply was further restricted in 2022 by the import and export restrictions from Belarus and Russia owing to Russia's invasion of Ukraine. The availability of nails also came under high pressure.

The demand for pallets and wooden packaging did remain high during this period: goods simply need to be transported. Wooden pallets and packaging remain an indispensable link in the global logistics chain.

FEFPEB Congress

Climate change, circularity and sustainability were also top topics at the Congress of the industry's European organisation, FEFPEB, in late September 2022 in Florence. Several speakers, including the CEO of EPAL International, highlighted the special place of wood, wooden packaging materials and pallets at this, as well as aspects such as certification of sustainable forest management, due diligence, recycling and circular economy.

Aantal ondernemingen 55
Aantal werknemers 1,060
Omzet (in miljoen euro) 615.4
Exportquote 40 %
Activity evolution in 2023 (in value) -36.4 %
Aandeel in de totale omzet van de Belgische hout en meubelsector 10 %

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Pascal Dewandeleer

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