Ben Adams, Jr.

Recent surge in refrigerated warehouse facilities

MORE MOUTHS TO FEED globally and higher per-capita income in the world’s two most populous countries were leading factors in a recent surge of construction in refrigerated warehouse facilities worldwide. The numbers are huge!

The International Association of Refrigerated Warehouses (IARW) estimated in its 2014 Global Cold Storage Capacity Report that the capacity of refrigerated warehouses worldwide last year was 19.8 billion cubic feet, up 22 percent (or 3.2 billion cubic feet) over the estimated 16.2 billion cubic feet of capacity in 2012.

The United States no longer is the world leader in refrigerated warehouse capacity. According to the IARW report, that honor now belongs to India, which had an estimated 4.6 billion cubic feet of refrigerated storage space in 2014. The U.S. was second on the global list at 4.1 billion cubic feet of refrigerated capacity, with China in third place at 2.7 billion cubic feet.

The long-term growth rates in refrigerated warehousing capacity are highest in India, China, and Turkey, according to the IARW report. Household income has risen steadily through the years in those countries, particularly in India and China, driving a demand for more conveniently packaged foods carried by supermarkets and hypermarkets.

Closer to home, refrigerated warehouse capacity in the U.S. increased nearly 10 percent from 2008 to 2014, according to the IARW report. Even closer to home, refrigerated space here at Adams Cold Storage will increase 60 percent (from five million cubic feet to nearly eight million cubic feet) once our current expansion project is completed. The demand for more capacity here is being driven both by the growth of current customers and a healthy mix of new accounts and potential new customers — mostly from the U.S. Northeast, Midwest, and Northwest and from Canada — who are considering shipping food products to us by rail.

This column is sponsored by Adams Cold Storage LLC.


column by BEN ADAMS JR.

BIO: Ben Adams, Jr. is an owner and president of Adams Cold Storage LLC in Auburndale. He has been directly involved in citrus production, warehousing and distribution, as well as state and community support, since 1980. His facility incorporates 200,000 square feet of multitemperature warehousing, with an extensive expansion project currently under way.

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