Plastic pallet makers sue wood competitors
December 20, 2010
The latest salvo of the war between plastic and wooden pallets is over butter. Intelligent Global Pooling Systems (iGPS), the leading supplier of plastic pallets, filed suit Dec. 10 in Dallas against the National Wooden Pallet and Container Assn. (NWPCA). The suit claims that a NWPCA press release made “defamatory statements” about the possibility of plastic pallets playing a role in contamination of butter in the Dallas area. The NWPCA release, which isstill availableon its website, refers to a study by the University of Texas of butter from several grocery stores in the Dallas area. The study notes the presence of polybrominated diphenyl ether (PDBE), a chemical often used as a fire retardant, although it does not suggest that plastic pallets caused the contamination. The NWPCA release does not state this, either, but notes that PDBE is used in plastic pallets and that they “should be examined as the root source of transfer to the food.” The lawsuit asks the state court to bar NWPCA from “making any false statement or claim, including any claim that iGPS’s plastic pallets are unsafe.” iGPS and NWPCA have long battled over safety issues related to their respective products, including fire hazards as well as product safety.