Mobile pallet stability test lab launched in ‘UK first’

THE UK’s first mobile pallet stability test lab has been tipped to ‘revolutionise’ pallet wrapping by cutting costs, improving stability, reducing product damage in transit and saving thousands of tonnes of stretch wrap every year.

Developed by Lindum Packaging, the test lab will provide on-site real-time pallet stability testing. Until now, Lindum said companies in the UK have had to conduct ‘inconclusive’ transit trials, often at test facilities in Europe, at a cost of up to €8,000 per test.

The new unit is driven to a customer’s factory or warehouse to test stacked pallets. Lindum added that it tests four times quicker than traditional offsite methods, enabling more testing to be completed at a lower cost per pallet. It is also the first mobile test lab to test to conform to EUMOS 40509:2020 Standard.

The lab uses an on-board accelerator bench that simulates the stresses a loaded pallet is subject to when a vehicle brakes suddenly. A camera measures and records the deflection and movements in the pallet at a range of pre-set G forces and the data is analysed by specially written software to determine pallet stability performance in accordance with the EUMOS standard. Immediate feedback is provided to adjust the wrapping and a pallet can quickly be re-tested.

Bernard Sellars, MD of Lindum Packaging, said, “This is a major innovation for the UK’s logistics and warehouse industry. Many businesses are currently wasting thousands of pounds on stretch film because they are over-wrapping pallets. Companies are reluctant to change because until now there has been no quick and consistent way to test the effectiveness of what they are doing.

“Our new unit changes all that by providing a cost-effective testing method that will improve stability, reduce product damage in transit and save thousands of tonnes of stretch wrap being used.

“With the introduction of the plastics tax in less than a year, the mobile test lab will allow companies to cut the amount of plastic stretch wrap they use, reducing their liability for the tax and improving their environmental performance. At the moment many businesses are using poor quality wrap, which is incorrectly applied and overwrapped in the hope that this will provide adequate protection and stability. They are surprised that thinner wrap applied correctly gives better protection and stability, whilst reducing costs and plastic.”

The test lab was launched to over 100 food industry, packaging and logistics professionals via a virtual event on 7 April.