What is Cold Chain Logistics?
Mar. 15, 2023
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The growth of global trade over the past few decades has seen several innovations and evolutions in the way business is conducted and in the equipment and infrastructure used to store and transport products.
The evolution of cold chain logistics is a direct result of the growth of global trade and supply chains.
The growing need to safely transport temperature-sensitive products over long distances has seen the birth of cold chain logistics.
As the standard of living has increased, especially in the developed countries of the world, people have become more aware of the quality of products and the need for freshness of products.
Today, cold chain logistics is an essential part of any modern and successful supply chain solution.
Cold Chain Logistics
What is cold chain logistics?
The planning and implementation of safe and reliable long distance transportation of any temperature sensitive product using the right equipment and transportation methods to maintain its correct temperature and humidity requirements is known as cold chain logistics.
It is also referred to as cold chain logistics. Temperature sensitive products include certain types of food, pharmaceuticals, biological samples and specimens, beverages, etc.
What are the elements of the cold chain?
Temperature-sensitive products must be kept cold at every step of the cold chain. The chain has many components, including the following.
Contrary to popular belief, the cold chain does not start when a temperature-sensitive product leaves the manufacturer's premises. The first step is to store the product in a cold storage facility.
If manufacturers of cold chain products do not have the storage equipment needed to keep their products cold, they will have to outsource their cold chain operations to partners who can provide the equipment.
Many 3PL companies provide warehouse facilities to store cold chain products over a period of time, whether in an intermediate location for distribution to local markets or waiting for delivery to distant markets.
Some common types of cold storage equipment and facilities include refrigerated containers, cold rooms, chillers, freezers, flash freezers, and vaccine carriers.
In order for temperature-controlled products to maintain quality during shipment, they must be packaged properly. Proper packaging helps minimize the risk of product contamination while ensuring energy efficient storage of the product in the cold chain.
Suppliers of cold chain products may need to track information about the specific type of product they ship, depending on the type of product they manufacture. This information includes temperature ranges and other environmental parameters, such as humidity levels that may compromise the integrity of temperature-sensitive shipments. With this information, shippers can audit their supply chain processes to detect environments and activities that are causing inefficiencies.
Data logging is one of the technologies that can be used to streamline cold chain supply management. This technology helps ensure effective cold chain monitoring of temperature-sensitive shipments. It also helps with quality assurance, as any quality issues can be addressed before it is too late.
Data loggers can be wireless, stand-alone, web-based or computer-based. Each option has unique features, benefits and drawbacks that must be carefully reviewed before a final decision is made. Consulting service providers can help shippers determine the most appropriate data logging technology for their cold chain supply needs.
Cold transportation involves deploying different transportation solutions to move temperature-sensitive products from the point of storage to the consumer market.
Cold chain products can be transported by road, rail, air and/or sea.
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