Preserve Perishables in Reefer Containers

Global trade has connected us, making it feel as if we are just a hop, skip and a jump away from different regions of the world, allowing us to gain access to distant markets. In reality the physical distance has not decreased, there is a need for atmosphere management to ensure the quality of perishable commodities.

Refrigerated cargo units (reefers) provide a regulated temperature and humidity and, in many cases, a controlled atmosphere as well.  There is very little margin for error when shipping perishable commodities – whether they be frozen, chilled or simply temperature controlled in an insulated container.  Reefer containers allow for optimum conditions of waterborne shipments of meat, pharmaceutical medications, fish, fruit, dairy produce, flowers and other perishable items serving the function of keeping cargo fresh for prolonged periods.

As stated in an earlier PIERS blog, the world is experiencing global economic growth. Regions with emerging economies (such as Asia, Africa and parts of Europe) now have a higher level of disposable income, affording higher quality foods and creating a demand for perishables products – especially animal protein, which is good news for the U.S.  Georgia is the U.S. leader in the export of poultry products.  Shipped in reefer cargo, Georgia’s meat industry grew by 21% in 2012, an increase of more than $220 million. Savannah is by far the leading exporter of poultry in the country, accounting for 40% of poultry exports in 2012 which explains why one of the country’s largest cold storage warehouses is moving in close proximity to the port.

2012 US Waterborne Reefer Poultry Exports

Planning to attend this year’s Trans Pacific Maritime (TPM) Conference in Long Branch, CA from March 3-6, 2013? Join us for a full day session regarding cool cargoes and the rapidly growing North American refrigerated cargo market. Topics include:

  • An overview of the U.S. reefer market
  • Slow steaming service
  • Reefer equipment management
  • FDA-proof cold chain
  • Sustainability

Can’t join us at TPM? Contact us today to have a PIERS solutions expert show you how PIERS reefer data can identify refrigerated cargo. We can also tell you the consignee, shipper, carrier name, commodity and more.


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