A National Lumber Shortage is Disrupting Pallet Markets
- - Do You Have A Backup Plan? - -

The coronavirus pandemic has caused significant shifts throughout the supply chain that have affected almost every part of our daily lives.  Included in that change is the lumber market, which is scrambling to meet the needs of their customers.  With home building at its peak with tremendous lumber demands, wood has become a premium.  Some major retailers are building and retaining their pallet inventories to handle their own needs (for packaged goods), which is creating significant voids within the ‘normal’ pallet supply chain.  All of this (and more) is keeping suppliers up at night trying to secure resources to meet their customers’ needs.
CHEP is the largest pallet provider in the USA, and they (like the entire pallet industry) are experiencing shortages in pockets as a result of the numerous shifts in the lumber industry.  After talking with them, we have been assured that they are doing all that they can to meet your orders.  However, CHEP and the NWA are recommending that (no matter who your pallet provider may be) it ‘may’ be in your best interest to have a ‘backup’ plan in case your current provider cannot fully meet your needs. 
We have become aware of a couple of instances where orders have been cancelled recently due to this major challenge.  No one has a crystal ball to predict what the upcoming months may bring.  We know and trust that CHEP and other NWA members are working hard to fill those orders, but in this environment there are no guarantees.  In the current pandemic environment and all of its resulting changes, it would be best to have a backup, just in case.