People are our most precious resource. In 2022, Hope Timber Pallet & Recycling has invested in people, infrastructure, sustainability, social responsibility, and resources to support our efforts next year and beyond.
As the COVID-19 pandemic slowed and Americans resumed their everyday activities, Hope Timber scaled up to accommodate a business boom among needs for wood pallets. In fact, 2022 was the ideal time to realize our goal of becoming your pallets partner in 2023.
As the year progressed, Hope Timber focused intensely on looking inward to improve our quality and customer service. Today, we are a more robust, better company because we resolve to improve the quality of our products for customers.
Hope Timber Employees: Our Best Resource in the Wood Pallet Industry
Our investment in the people who work at Hope Timber is the most important step we took in 2022, and it was just the beginning. Our 2023 plans include more and bigger investments.
The tight labor market in the United States has created new hiring challenges, so we focused on improving our current employees’ skills. As we grow our people, we recognize the need for continued training and education in the pallet industry.
Community Refugee and Immigration Services (CRIS)
In mid-2022, we began working with Community Refugee and Immigration Services (CRIS) of Ohio to ensure 12 refugees from Afghanistan and Sudan can get to and from work daily. We were fortunate that one of the refugees was a translator, so we could effectively communicate all the job functions to our non-English-speaking employees.
Also, in 2022, we hired a life coach to help employees navigate challenges in obtaining housing, other personal concerns, and completing their GEDs. We care for our employees and want to help them get ahead.
Another exciting program we have adopted is through a group called Vistage, which offers small business leadership training. Hope Timber began by sending a few participants, but we plan to expand and offer training on-site next year. We want to assist our leaders and future leaders in gaining the knowledge and confidence needed to take Hope Timber into the future.
Strengthening Infrastructure in Wood Pallet Industry
From our founding, high-quality service and environmental responsibility have been some of Hope Timber’s key characteristics. Owner Tom Harvey and his sons, TJ, Kevin, and Tim, invested in technology that led to company expansion into the 48 x 40 pallet and custom pallet supplier and manufacturer we are today.
We invested significantly more in 2022, recognizing that an improved foundation could catalyze productivity and efficiency. To that end, we added 6,800 feet of new inventory shelters and replaced 11,200 square feet of aging concrete last year. We also improved our building’s gutters and drainage.
Additionally, we upgraded much of our aging machinery, including a rough-terrain forklift and an electric grinder. We also replaced a four-head resaw with a new five-head model. Our investment in our machinery will increase production while reducing operating costs. That’s a win for everyone!
Sustainability and Company Social Responsibility
Customers nationwide see sustainability as an essential part of doing business. The 2022 Business of Sustainability Index by GreenPrint found that 66% of U.S. consumers and 80% of Americans ages 18-34 surveyed were willing to pay more for sustainable products vs. less sustainable competitors.
At Hope Timber, our customers can save up to 30% per order using reclaimed wood instead of new wood for pallets.
A big move in the wood pallet industry in 2022 was when the Pallet Foundation and the National Wooden Pallet & Container Association (NWPCA) unveiled an environmental product declaration (EPD) for wooden pallets produced in the U.S. The study looked at the lifecycles of more than 85 million wood pallets.
“This EPD shows that wood pallets are a carbon-neutral product,” said TJ Harvey, Vice President and Director of Operations at Hope Timber.
The designation was a first for a product in the distribution packaging space.
Part of the original mission of Hope Timber was to use environmentally sustainable material for our pallets. We want to do business in a way that is good for the environment, customers and employees. We source 99% of the wood for our pallets from timber grown in Ohio.
Wood Pallet Prices and Resources
It’s common knowledge that inflation led to price increases in 2022. The price of steel skyrocketed, which affected the cost of nails. Diesel gas — which powers our truck fleet — has remained stubbornly high.
Wood prices increased for a good portion of last year due to increased demand after the slowdown of pandemic-related closures and harvests. We maintained strong relationships with our wood suppliers, which enabled us to continue to access wood for pallet production.
2023: A Continued Focus on Quality
Our goal, as always, is to help our customers ensure smooth operations.
We’re here to discuss your current or future pallet needs anytime and look forward to providing our customers stability by using innovative methods of building and remanufacturing our wood pallets. Because we offer our own source of transportation for your pallet needs, we can deliver no matter the circumstances. Contact us today for more information.