As you are probably aware, cold food storage is a capital intensive business, and requires a fair amount of land. So when planning your facility, remember to be aware of the required capacity and height of your cold store.
Don’t forget to account for the Material Handling Equipment (MHE) that will need to be moving through your facility. And the people, product, equipment and documents will also be moving through your facility.
All these factors need to be considered in your planning in terms of space, efficiencies, and regulations. The compliance standards for handling and storing of food are rather stringent. These regulatory constraints are based on the area, and the type of food storage facility and product type stored.
And then there are additional standards and requirements for Safety, Health, and Environmental concerns.
In terms of safety, there are regulations in terms of structure, processes and monitoring of adherence to procedures. In terms of health, you need to adhere to set standards for ventilation systems, ergonomics, lighting, hygiene and hearing protection. And on an environmental level, you must allow for suitable drainage systems, traffic planning and waste disposal. There are also compliance standards for fire detection and defence.
How you design your racking will depend on the functions it will fulfil. For example, fixed racking with wider aisles will be more suitable for high volume picking of food items; while mobile racking will be better for bulk movement and storage of product - as well as the optimisation of the available space.
Another big consideration is the kind of refrigerant that will be used. When making this critical decision, or when choosing other equipment and solutions, always look into the available support and after sales service of providers.
These are some of the valuable lessons we’ve learnt at CCS in our 50 year journey to becoming the most trusted cold storage operator.