For over 30 years the leading pallet and sawmill magazine in America.
Supplier Spotlight: Litco’s Molded Core Plugs Help Pallet Companies Round Out Their Product Lines
Litco’s Molded Core Plugs Can Help Pallet Suppliers to Fulfill Customer Needs
By Lisa Monroe
Date Posted: 9/1/2015
Litco? molded core plugs can help pallet suppliers to fulfill customer needs.
A recent $1.2 million expansion allows Litco International Inc. to now offer a complete line of molded wood plug sizes. The company is currently seeking qualified distributors to help market the products.
Inca core plugs are molded from resin and hardwood and softwood fibers under high heat and pressure. They are designed to help prevent the crushing of the cores that are used to wind rolled products such as paper, foil and film during transport and storage.
Litco introduced the Inca brand of molded wood plugs in 1997, and claims they are a better choice than particleboard and other molded wood plugs. First, they are stronger and safer for the operator to insert because they have a higher sidewall impact resistance, said Gary Sharon, vice president of Litco. They also have a greater dimensional stability because they are molded rather than cut from a manufactured board; more resistant to moisture because of the resin and a wax additive and more durable, meaning they can be reused more times than particleboard plugs; for a lower cost of ownership.
The largest market for both plugs and pallets is the paper, film and foil converters that wind their products onto rolls, use a plug in the end of the core, and then ship them on pallets. Therefore, core plugs are a cost efficient product for pallet companies to sell.
There are only five manufacturing sites for molded wood plugs in the entire United States, said Sharon; this includes Litco’s two shipping sites in Mississippi and Ohio. That means shipping costs for small lot orders can be very high depending on the buyer’s location. That’s where regional pallet suppliers can add value by stocking Litco’s plugs.
“Most of the paper, film and foil converters purchase plugs in less-than-truckload lots at a high cost per plug,” said Sharon. “To provide value, the pallet company would purchase and inventory in larger lots at a lower delivered cost per plug. Their customers would benefit from shorter lead times and saved warehouse space if the pallet company stocks a quantity of the plugs and then delivers them in pallet load lots along with wooden pallets. The pallet company, on the other hand, would benefit with additional sales and profits.”
Being able to supply customers with innovative solutions, and having the supplies that their customers need when they need them can help pallet companies increase their business, said Sharon. “We will work with the pallet supplier and train them on the plugs as to what question to ask and solutions to present. This will also help to further cement their position as the preferred pallet supplier.”
Litco began in 1962 with its roots in the wooden pallet business. “We are the only company in North America to offer the Inca presswood pallets. Similar to the core plugs, we also sell the pallets direct and through distributors,” Sharon commented.
Inca pallets appeal to shippers that export, because they are easy to get and meet the heat treatment requirements without additional processes and special stamps, Sharon explained. “They are not regulated by ISPM-15 because they are considered processed wood. Due to this reason, shippers are confident that their shipments will be accepted worldwide without costly delays at foreign ports.”
They are ideal for companies with limited warehouse space that prefer to store their pallets indoors for cleanliness. Inca pallets stack 50 high in a seven-foot-high stack, and a truckload of 1,320 presswood pallets utilizes the same space as a truckload of 588 conventional wooden pallets, Sharon said.
Inca pallets are also popular with customers that purchase less-than-full truckloads of pallets, Sharon said. “Buyers can choose from our nine standard sizes and purchase any quantity with minimal lead time. Shipping costs are reasonable because there are 50 pallets per stack.”
Additional products include; ISPM-15 compliant pallet top caps made from corrugated and/or wood; recycled rubber friction mats; blocking and bracing and services for securing loads in vans, containers and rail cars.
For free samples and additional information contact the Molded Products Group, Litco International at 330/539-5433, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the web site at www.litco.com.