If you use FIBCs to store, ship or transport goods in your business, you have probably figured out exactly what kind, size and quantity of bulk bags you need to conduct your operations most effectively. However, you may not be sure what pallet to use for those bulk bags. If you are concerned about efficiency and safety, choosing the right pallet to go with your bulk bags is an important part of the process for effective bulk bag use.

Here’s what you need to know.

Why It’s So Important to Choose the Right Pallet

With boxes, it can be easy to see how your items will fit on the pallet — it’s not much of a daily concern. Boxes are designed to provide their own support, they’re stackable by design and the nature of the pallet — assuming all the boxes fit — is unlikely to affect them.

With bulk bags, the situation is different. Warehouse staff may throw various bulk bags on any pallet that’s handy, assuming it makes no difference. But for bulk bags, the wrong pallet can cause product to shift, which can create additional problems during the transporting and unloading phases or it can lead to an unbalanced pallet once the bulk bags are on, which can mean problems even in the storage phase of the operation.

Common Issue With Selecting Pallets for Bulk Bags

Even though bulk bags have square or rectangle bottoms, they tend to round out a bit as soon as you come up from the very bottom of the bag, so they have a different shape from boxes — and one that’s not as conducive to stacking and packing assuming baffles are not present inside the bags. The top of the bulk bag also takes on a cylindrical shape. Additionally, boxes are rigid, while bulk bags are flexible, meaning they settle and conform to the shapes around them.

This means, to get the right distribution of weight and symmetry, you need to prevent unbalanced bags that fall off your pallet or shift your product in a way that creates problems later. You need to be very careful about the pallet you choose and how you load your bulk bags onto it.

For example, let’s say you’re stacking bulk bags on your pallet. Since the bags tend to round above the bottom, there will likely be an area of your bags on either side that extends beyond the support of the pallet. You may want to watch for this. If you see it happening, be sure you have an extra slat in the front and the back of your pallet. This will give your pallet the support you need for stacking your bulk bags. If you neglect this situation, the whole pallet is likely to lean in one direction, which can create huge problems for your forklift operators.

It’s important to consider the size of your pallet when using them with bulk bags whether you’re stacking bags or not. The standard 40” x 48” pallet seems like it will completely cover a 35-square-inch bulk bag, but once you put this bag on the pallet, its flexible shape will likely cause the sides to jut out to around 44 or 45 inches, which means it will overlap. This will cause the bag to droop and deform even more.

The thing to take away is that it’s very important to use a large enough pallet depending on your bag size and specifications, and one that has the proper slat arrangement to support your bulk bags. If you do, you will have a storage and transportation unit that is extremely reliable and can keep workflow safe and productive.

If you do not, you may have unanticipated logistical problems that could slow down and disrupt your operations, which can affect your bottom line.


Choose Bulk Bag Reclamation

Bulk Bag Reclamation has bulk bags in a wide variety of sizes and styles to fit your existing pallets. These are bulk bags that adhere to the highest standards for quality and reliability. They’re simple to load, unload and move — and that can reaffirm your commitment to sustainability and excellence.

To learn more or order bulk bags, contact us today.