In most cases, the cost of establishing a pallet collection program is marginal. Potential costs may involve purchasing signs, advertising costs, containers to hold the pallets and transportation to haul the pallets to the market. Pallet recyclers may take on some of these costs, depending on the quality of the materials available.
If pallets are integrated into an established yard waste-processing program, the cost is minimal since major capital expenses have already been realized with the yard-waste processing program. The cost of adding pallets to an existing program may involve advertising costs, new signs and optional containers to hold the pallets.
If a new program is established, costs can be significant depending on the design of the program. If grinding material will be done in-house and on-site, costs will involve purchasing a grinder, land preparation, equipment operation and maintenance and labor. To avoid all but land preparation costs, contract grinding can be a cost-effective way to implement a program. Refer to DEAO's contract grinding fact sheet if considering this option.
Regardless of the collection method, costs to manage a pallet recycling program can be offset by revenue generated from tip fees and possibly from the sale of any resulting products like mulch or compost.
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N.C. Division of Environmental Assistance and Outreach • Mailing Address: 1639 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-1639