Cold Storage Capacity Increasing Globally, but Decreased in Europe

Total capacity of cold stores reached a size of 600 million cubic meters globally in 2016, an increase of 8.6 percent.

Cold Chain Logistics 583d9c1761556

Total capacity of cold stores reached a size of 600 million cubic meters globally in 2016, an increase of 8.6 percent compared to 2014. The storage capacity in most European countries, however, decreased during this period.

In 2016, China built the most new cold stores; 31 million cubic meters of extra space was added. India still has the largest cold store capacity, 141 million cubic meters in total. India, the U.S. and China were the only three countries that each had more than 100 million cubic meters cold store capacity available last year, according to the Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA).

Countries Added to Database

Of countries with a smaller volume, Uzbekistan, Turkey and Mexico reported a substantial growth capacity, 1.6 million cubic meters in Mexico, and 2.4 million cubic meters in Turkey and Uzbekistan. In North Africa in 2016, total cold store space was 6 million cubic meters larger than in 2014, an increase of 4.6 percent. The U.S. was good for an increased capacity of 3.2 million cubic meters.

Part of the global expansion of cold store capacity can be attributed to the reporting of countries that were previously not in the database. Reported changes added approximately 11 million cubic meters to the capacity expansions in GCCA’s database. Countries that were added to the database are South Korea, Peru, Mauritius, Ecuador and Kenya.

Decreased Cold Store Capacity in European Countries

The cold store capacity in most European countries decreased between 2014 and 2016. The storage capacity in Europe amounted to 112 million cubic meters. Turkey and the UK were exceptions to that downward trend. More than 2.4 million cubic meters of cold stores were built in Turkey in the past two years. For the UK, a total capacity of 32 million cubic meters was reported, which is also an increase. A significant share of that increase, however, can be attributed to better market monitoring. The Netherlands is in ninth place in the international top 20, with a total of 14 million cubic meters of storage capacity.