Graco is an American manufacturer of fluid-handling systems and products based in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Graco has had a long standing relationship with Packnet Ltd., covering various packaging solutions over the years, so when they discovered their current pallets were no longer working the way they needed, they asked Packnet to develop a reinforced solution. Packnet’s original pallets were used by Graco to move product from one company location to another. But, this time, Graco wanted them reinforced and durable enough for individuals to walk on them, as they were being used for inter-company transfers between Graco and its suppliers.
Graco Packaging Engineer Chad Kriewaldt designed a work-in- process pallet customized for a special Graco product and asked Packnet to create pallets using medium density fiberboard (MDF). After trial runs with these pallets, Graco wanted more durability so Packnet added reinforcements by changing the decking on the pallets to PVC. This material was CNC routered from supplied CAD files to create precise openings in the PVC sheets. Graco is able to reuse the pallets with its suppliers. It sends the pallets to suppliers who then send them back with raw castings for machining and assembling. The empty pallets get returned to the suppliers again for reuse. The intent is to reuse these pallets for a few years before replacing them, rather than the more typical lifespan of a few months.