Hitachi Construction Machinery is a registered corporate member of the “Wood Products Use Campaign” — a national campaign promoted by the Forestry Agency, which aims to improve the condition of forests through the use of domestic timber. The following is one example of how the company uses domestic timber in our plants.
Tsuchiura Works (Tsuchiura, Ibaraki Prefecture) and Kasumigaura Works (Kasumigaura, Ibaraki Prefecture) use pallets made of domestic timber to carry items around the factories and to transport goods to and from business partners. Hitachi Kenki Logistics Technology orders and maintains the pallets. The company buys between about 3,200 – 4,000 pallets a year in sizes of 750 x 900 x 130 (construction machinery standard), 900 x 900 x 130 and other specially ordered sizes. We specify domestic timber for the pallets, which are currently made of Japanese Red Pine grown in Fukushima Prefecture. High durability and safety are required for the pallets because they are loaded with heavy items mostly made of iron. Tsuchiura Works has its own standards called TES, which are more stringent than the Japanese Industrial Standards (JIS), and pallets made of domestic timber meet the TES.
Broken pallets are repaired at the sites where goods are received. They are used repeatedly until three supports break. Pallets that are no longer fit for use are processed into wood chips for recycling together with other redundant wooden products. The method to recycle used pallets will be described in the next issue of CSR Activity News.