What is a cold storage warehouse?
A cold storage warehouse is one that is artificially cooled down to a temperature above or below zero or 45 degrees Fahrenheit. The purpose is to store fresh and frozen perishable vegetables and fruits, dairy products, meat, and seafood, or fowl, or a combination of goods. This helps maintain the quality of the goods. There are a lot of businesses that require these cold storage warehouses to handle goods that are perishable or extremely temperature-sensitive. Cold storage gives them a place to store their products safely.
How does a Cold Storage system work?
A cold warehouse will keep products in a temperature that is set by the user, which keeps goods fresh and lasting longer. For instance, storing fresh fruits and vegetables at the right temperature reduces the risk of damage, keeps them fresh and expands their shelf life, whereas if the same goods are stored in a warmer temperature they will rot faster and attract pests. It is mandatory to keep temperature-sensitive products at a specified temperature, otherwise they spoil and there are changes in color, texture as well as flavour.
What kind of products should be stored in a cold storage warehouse?
It is a common belief that cold warehouses are just for fruits and vegetables or other food items. However, various other items require these facilities to preserve their quality and extend their shelf life. Some of these products are:
- Candles: Candles need to be stored at a cold temperature otherwise they will start melting and their unique colors and designs will not be preserved.
- Film: Although most people don’t use film anymore, for those people who do it is necessary to store it in a cold environment to avoid any sort of unwanted damage.
- Artwork: If artwork is stored in a hot environment it will the color of the painting fades and in some cases, the colours may even peel off the canvas. Therefore, artwork should be stored in a cold environment, especially if these pieces are old and need to be preserved for a long period.
- Plants: Cut flowers in a bouquet last longer if they are stored in cooler temperatures. Even seeds are well kept in a cold storage facility.
- Lipsticks and colognes: Cologne and cosmetics should be stored in cold storage to increase their shelf life. In fact, storing cologne in cold temperatures will keep its scent for a longer time.
- Medicine: Certain types of medicines need to be stored in cold temperatures to ensure that they don’t get contaminated. For example, blood samples and medical supplies.
These are examples of products that should be stored in cold storage before the logistics companies transport them to consumer markets.
Practices for managing a cold storage warehouse
- Maintain alternate temperature ranges – Different products have different temperature requirements and it’s more costly to cool the air than to heat it. Therefore, it is important to have alternative temperature ranges. For instance, vegetables and fruits need a temperature of 55° F, whereas meat should be stored at a temperature of 28° F and ice cream at a temperature of -10° F. The operator of the cold storage needs to make sure that all the items in storage are stored according to their temperature requirements.
- Automation should be used for availing savings – The cost of labour, land and energy is increasing at an accelerated rate day by day. Therefore, any cold storage operator should opt for an automation system that will reduce their energy requirements by 80%, space requirements by 50%, and labour requirements by 70%. An automated system would help save a lot of money with a one-time investment.
- Cube with dense storage – Automated storage and retrieval systems have been used in warehouses for ages, and a lot of innovation in technology has taken place over the last decade to improve them. Now they offer high-density rack supported storage as well. This has helped in deep and tall designs, which in turn helps maximize the cube of the facility and minimize the footprint.
- Ensure that the heat loss is controlled – Storages of high-density create a smaller area to cool and develop an environment that can maximize heat loss. Therefore, it is advised that the cold storage where food is stored is as small as possible.
- Automate palletizing – Palletizing means to transport goods on a pallet. Robotics has advanced and that has allowed palletizing of the products to become more effective and cost-efficient. It has allowed cold storage operators to reduce their time as initially they had to palletize their frozen products, then get it back to the freezer. This is not necessary anymore because of automated palletizing.
Warehouses are a very important part of any business as this is where the goods which are manufactured by the business are stored before they are transported to consumers. Different goods required different types of warehouse storage systems. The two main types of warehouses are dry storage warehouses and cold storage warehouses.
The only major difference between a dry storage warehouse and cold storage warehouse is that dry storage warehouses are not cold whereas cold storage warehouses are. Cold storage is not only for vegetables and fruits but other items as well. These cold warehouses are programmed to keep products stored in the temperature which is optimal to increase the shelf life of the product and preserve its quality.
All these points should be kept in mind for optimal cold storage management that ensures the products are of the best quality before they get transported by a freight company to different consumer markets around the world.
- Posted by admin
- On September 1, 2020