Whirlowdale go even greener

In the spring of 2013 after the annual review of all operational and customer service procedures, a decision was made to take further steps to help improve our environmental and wood waste policy with the purchase of a Smart Products pallet dismantling machine. This decision was taken with a view to reclaiming as much timber and components as possible from what would normally be classed as a non repairable wooden pallet, thereby reducing the amount of scrap timber which would usually find its way to landfill.

As an enhancement to our Pallet Management System, the potential benefits to our customers include:

The new machine finally arrived on the 22 September 2013 having safely survived the long sea journey from the USA in a tightly, yet carefully packed 20 foot container. On arrival at our Rotherham yard, the machine was carefully removed from its container with a little help from our neighbours at McClean Buchanan and Wilson who had the much bigger fork lift truck with the required capacity, capable of removing the machine from the container and appreciatively setting the new machine down in our works shed ready for final assembly.

As part of the purchasing arrangements for the machine, the owner and president of Smartproducts company, Ken Hess agreed to travel to the UK and visit our Head Office at Rotherham to assist with the assembly and training of the workforce to enable us to get the best from the machine as a complete pallet dismantling or pallet preparation facility.

After only a few short hours the machine was ready to go and was quickly dismantling scrap pallets and providing us with an abundance of re-usable pallet components ready to be utilised in the repair of pallets or the manufacture of a new start pallets using reclaimed timber.

With the machine now in place and the operators becoming more acquainted with its potential, we are now producing sufficient components to make new start pallets and provide ample repair materials to meet all our customer demands at all of the Whirlowdale sites. The machine is providing approx. 3000 – 3500 boards a day from our scrap pallets which is equivalent to 21 cubic meters per week. Combined with the money saved from using reclaimed timber, transport costs are also down as we no longer have to remove the scrap pallets from site. Overall, early indications are very impressive and the machine is proving to be a sound investment for both Whirlowdale and all our customers.

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