The standardised EUR wooden pallet, which has become an essential component for logistics firms and major retailers throughout Europe, is 50 years old. The pallet service community Gütegemeinschaft Paletten e.V. is gearing up to celebrate its half-century, in collaboration with Deutsche Bahn, on 11 May during the 2011 Transport Logistic trade fair in Munich.
It was in 1961 that UIC signed an agreement on internationally standardised and exchangeable pallets and the creation of the European Pallet Pool (EPP) among railways. The manufacturing standards for this European EUR pallet (bearing the acronym of the registering railway) are defined in UIC Leaflet 435-2 (its full name being “Standard of quality for a European flat pallet made of wood with four entries and measuring 800 mm x 1200 mm”). This pallet soon became the solution of choice due to its easy handling and loading on both wagons and lorries using forklift trucks. With some 500 million models produced, the UIC “EUR” pallet represents the world’s largest pool of exchangeable pallets.