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Everything You Need to Know About Using Pallets for International Export

October 11, 2022

If your business ships goods overseas, you’ll likely be using pallets to ensure your goods are shipped in the safest and most efficient way possible. While the pallet and shipping requirements for your business will vary based on the type of goods you’re sending as well as their final destination, there are a few factors that all international exporters should take into consideration. 


Pallets Size

In Australia, the standard size of pallets for local use is 1165mm X 1165mm, while pallets that are going to be shipped internationally are generally 1100mm X 1100mm. However, it’s important to be aware that other countries have their own standard pallet sizes as well as maximum sizes and weights. For example, the standard pallet size in Europe is 800mm x 1200mm x 144mm, as specified by the European Pallet Association (EPAL) and shipments to Europe must meet strict standards.  You may need to source specific pallets that comply with the regulations of the country or region you are shipping to (for example, we offer Euro pallets that meet EPAL’s strict regulations). It is also worth liaising with the company that will be receiving your stock to ensure that your pallets will be compatible with their logistics systems (such as forklifts and storage facilities).


Pallets Customs Regulations

All pallets freighted overseas will need to comply with the ISPM 15: The international standard for solid wood packaging material, which was designed to prevent the global spread of timber pests. Untreated wood can play host to a number of undesirable pests and organisms, so the standard was introduced to prevent them from inadvertently spreading between countries through the use of wooden pallets.


In order to comply with the ISPM 15, wooden pallets must be either heat-treated or treated with methyl bromide to ensure any insects or fungus present in the raw wood are eliminated.


If you’re exporting wooden pallets it is essential you have the necessary proof that your pallets meet the ISPM 15 standards. Using pallets that don’t comply with the standard, or simply not having the correct paperwork to prove that they are compliant can lead to significant delays or even the rejection of your entire shipment, depending on the circumstances. 


Pallets Weight


Every pallet has maximum weight limits which should never be exceeded. Failing to consider the weight limit of your pallets can lead to serious issues such as significant stock loss, damage to goods or cancelled shipments. The maximum weight limit for any pallet will depend not only on its construction and dimensions but also on how it is being transported. Pallets that stay on the floor are bound by static load weight limits whereas those that are going to be loaded onto a forklift or another lifting device and moved from one place to another will need to comply with dynamic load weight limits.If you’re shipping goods internationally, it’s likely your pallets are going to be lifted and moved at some point in their journey, so you will need to refer to the dynamic load capacity of your pallets.


You may need to contact the company that will be receiving your pallets to find out what kind of transport and storage systems they use, in order to confirm that their weight is suitable.


If you need high-quality, ISPM 15-compliant pallets for international export, talk to the experts at Cooperage Pallets today. We have a wide range of export-ready pallets to suit your specific needs. We also offer a range of Euro pallets specially designed for export to Europe.