Global trade has evolved so that any kind of product is available to buy regardless of geographic location. The interesting thing is that this includes perishable items like meat, medicines, and even flowers. How do you suppose imported meat gets delivered worldwide? The answer is through cold chain logistics.
Supply Chain Management has come a long way in the past few decades. Managing inventories and transportation to aid global trade has been bolstered through technological advancements. This includes the storage and shipping of perishable items that need to be refrigerated throughout the way to be able to survive the entire process.
Cold chain logistics is precisely what the name suggests; a method of logistics that involves refrigeration techniques to provide customers and clients with temperature-sensitive products in usable condition. The process consists of a series of tasks to prepare products for preparation, storing them appropriately and transporting them carefully in refrigerated storage all the way through.
A failure to ensure proper refrigeration renders the product useless, making it a loss for the customer, which means it is wastage and a financial setback for both the business and the end consumer. It is not just about refrigeration even. It is about maintaining the ideal temperature for the specific product. For example, ice cream needs freezing temperatures, whereas something like meat would require a lesser yet cold temperature.
Let’s take a look at the critical aspects of a cold storage chain. These components are all equally essential to make a cold chain successful.
Some might think that the refrigeration starts at the point where the product leaves the manufacturer. But it is actually storage of the products that require the first level of refrigeration. The manufacturers need the appropriate storage facility for temperature-sensitive products to keep them cold. If they don’t have this arrangement, they’ll require a third-party logistics partner that does have it. This arrangement includes things like containers, cold rooms, cold boxes, vaccine carriers, blast freezers, and chillers.
This is the tricky part where temperature-sensitive products can be ruined if not done correctly. Proper packaging is required to minimize the risk of ruined products through spillage or contamination. Refrigeration also requires the packaging to be proper; otherwise, the insides of the package can be spoiled.
Temperature-sensitive cargo requires more than usual types of monitoring. This data can include the temperature levels, humidity, and other environmental factors and the regulation tracking factors of a shipment. This information is key for suppliers to be able to tailor their process to make sure that no calamity strikes in the transit of the products. Data logging is a method that is used to keep this information and use it wisely. It can be done remotely through web-based computers or even smartphones wirelessly.
Transportation is essential since sometimes packages can take a lot of time to be delivered based on the mode of transportation. Luckily, cold storage options are available for air, rail, sea, and even road. There is a variety of specialized transport available for this exact need. These include refrigerated vans, trucks, reefer containers to keep the shipment cold.
Cold chain logistics could be on any scale, including local, regional, or global. When the products need to be shipped overseas to clients, it is international trade. For that, some legalities need to be taken care of. A specialized cold logistics operator will be able to take care of the legal hassle and the paperwork with ease when it comes to international shipments.
6. Product Handling
Temperature-controlled products require specialized handling equipment like boxes, crates, pallets, and sometimes seven conveyor belts. The lack of such equipment can cause loss of shipment or difficulty in fulfilling product deliveries.
The last item on the list is the fulfillment of the order, i.e. Delivery. The delivery process should also be made using well-equipped means like refrigerated vans or trucks.
If you are in a business that requires cold Chain Management services, we have highly professional Temperature Controlled Transportation services to offer. At ARK India, we pride ourselves on providing quality of service with technology and personnel to help you reach your customers most cost-effectively.