The nationwide growth in demand for fresher foods has contributed to a boom in the refrigerated transportation sector. But tighter food-handling standards and emission regulations are limiting the load flexibility and utilization options that carriers may have had in the past while driving significantly higher equipment and operating costs.
The challenge refrigerated carriers face, industry executives said, is to use the newer trailers and technologies available today to maximize utilization and load flexibility within the constraints of the cold chain and emission regulations.
“The need for temperature-control transportation is a growing trend in the United States,” said Mark Domzalski, senior vice president of sales and operations with Newark, N.J-based PLM Trailer Leasing. Legislation and activities involving the Food Safety Modernization Act “are requiring more stringent measures of control for the transport of food across the U.S.”