How Wooden Pallets Are Safe for the Food Industry

When it comes to storing food items, there are many options that a business can resort to. Some options are considered unsafe for the storage of such items because they can cause contamination. Wooden pallets have been the go-to for the food industry for storage and transport. We will look at the major reasons why wooden pallets are considered safe for the food industry and how to properly use them to avoid contamination.

Apart from wooden pallets, there are also other materials that can be used instead. Plastic pallets are commonly preferred over wooden pallets as they are much more durable and don’t cause much contamination. But there are other harmful effects that can be caused by using plastic pallets. Wooden pallets can be sterilized to offer safety to your edible goods. Hence, it is a much safer option than plastic pallets. 

Reasons Why Wooden Pallets are Safe For Food Storage

The relationship between wood pallets and food safety has come under scrutiny in recent years from consumers and supply chain decision-makers alike. There are various reasons why wood pallets are best for food safety. Wood pallets are safe for transporting food in many different ways. Not only that but they are affordable and reliable. Some of the reasons why you should prefer a wooden pallet instead of any other material are listed here:

It Doesn’t Hold Pathogens

A wooden pallet, when properly sterilized, is highly safe to store food in. After sterilization, the wood does not harbor any harmful substances or pathogens. So if you’re wondering that the wood may have termites or other microorganisms that could harm the food, you’re wrong. When wood is treated before the formation of a pallet, all the pathogens are removed and no harm can be done to the food. 

The Surface of the Wood is Clean

As mentioned above, when the wood is sterilized, all the harmful contaminants are cleared out and none remain on the surface of the wood. For the majority of food businesses, wooden pallets are used to store raw materials, store work in progress or store finished product. 

After heat treatment, the contaminants inside the wood are also removed so it is completely safe to be used. However, if you plan to store the food for a longer period of time, then it is suggested not to store it in a wooden pallet. Because as we know, food doesn’t have a long shelf life hence, it can contaminate the wood.

Wood Pallets Keep the Packaging Safe

When you purchase wooden pallets from a well-reputed pallet company, your packaging will not be damaged. In most cases, the packaging gets damaged because of the poor build quality of the pallets. However, a good quality pallet will keep your goods safe and in good condition throughout the transportation. The safety of goods in food transportation is a major concern for many manufacturers and wooden pallets provide the safety you need. 

Wooden Pallets are Designed to Meet Food Industry Standards

It may not be possible for a lot of food companies to eliminate wooden pallets in their production site. So control measures are implemented to avoid contamination of the finished product and raw materials. The design of wooden pallets is specific to accommodate food transportation. The pallets are free of any damage and nail heads sticking out that can damage the goods. When pallet manufacturers design these pallets, they make sure the edges are cut out properly to ensure the safety of the food items. 

Food Safety Modernization Act

The Food Safety Modernization Act stipulates that food cannot be harmed by pallets. When used as tertiary packaging, pallets of a specific material are not required, nor is their sanitization for applications involving indirect food contact. Pallet providers are increasingly creating procedures to make sure that pallets are maintained as dry and clean as possible until they are delivered to the client. Users of pallets are also urged to adhere to a set procedure to guarantee that pallets are handled carefully and inspected before being put under load.

Safety Measures for Buying Used Pallets Used pallets are a great option, but it is still important to follow FDA and Food Safety Modernization Act regulations for dry, clean, damage-free pallets. If you buy used, make sure to get good quality pallets that adhere to those regulations and check for codes to avoid unsafe food storage.

No Evidence of Wood Pallets Causing Contamination

There is no proof of wood pallets causing a substantial outbreak of food-borne illness. According to some studies, wood pallets are actually safer than alternatives because contaminants are absorbed into the wood, as opposed to non-absorbent material pallets, which would leave contaminants on the surface of the pallet where they provide a higher danger of cross-contamination.

Heat Treatment Process For Wooden Pallets

Wooden pallets are heated as part of the heat treatment process in a dedicated chamber until the core reaches 132.8 degrees Fahrenheit (56 Celsius). Before cooling down, it must remain at this temperature for at least 30 minutes. When the procedure is finished, a stamp indicating compliance with ISPM 15 requirements is applied.

Advantages of Heat Treatment

There are several reasons why this wood pallet treatment is desirable. The ability to ship internationally is essential since heat will kill any wood-boring insects and shield the wood from infestation. All insects and larvae will be eliminated if the core is kept at a high temperature for 30 minutes. As a result, insects are kept from spreading and colonising new places, especially those where they are not native. 

Wooden pallets that have undergone heat treatment also weigh less than untreated pallets. The savings on freight alone might be substantial. Additionally, you won’t sacrifice quality because heat treatment will make your wooden pallets survive even longer. They are resistant to organisms that contribute to wood and less prone to decay.


Unaka Forest Products is a well-reputed pallet manufacturing company. We produce high-quality pallets that are capable of supporting heavy loads. Our products will fulfill the needs of every sort of business. Whether you want pallets that can bare heavy or light loads, we have both! We guarantee our customers a long life-span of our products. Contact us today and make your purchase right now!

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