It almost doesn’t matter where in the world you look these days, the demand for more cold storage is increasing, and new facilities are being planned and built to satisfy the the growing market.
Although global cold storage capacity experienced a two-year increase of nearly 17 percent in 2020 with 719 million cubic meters devoted to refrigerated warehouse space, the demand for still more exists in every part of the world.
Cutting Food Waste
In many developing countries, the focus is simply on preserving food before it spoils. In India, where up to 30 percent of food can spoil before it reaches consumers, cold storage is moving closer and closer to farms. Refrigerated containers, sometimes solar-powered, keep newly harvested crops fresh on or near individual farms before they begin their journey to market.
Narsampet, a town of 45,000 residents in rural east central India, has plans for a cold storage unit to serve the town and surrounding villages to help make it “a model town,” according to a report in Telangana Today. In the Philippines, a chief economist says cold storage is a key next step to prevent food waste in that country, and farmers in Kenya are embracing cold storage pack houses to keep food fresh and maximize exports.
In countries with more established cold chain supply services, demand is only increasing, causing more and more cooling facilities to be built.
In Australia, online grocery shopping is driving cold storage demand higher, according to a report on the JLL website. In central Texas, where cold storage capacity has “remained unchanged for decades,” a new 170,000 square-foot facility is in the works to fill an underserved need in the market. It will be built in Seguin — a small city near San Antonio.
Industry observers are saying proximity to densely populated areas and flexibility are important qualities in the cold storage facilities being planned now. According to a report in REjournals, facilities like Washington Cold Storage that are in or near large cities and offering multiple storage options like freezer, refrigerated and dry storage areas are increasingly being prioritized.