Region/Countries: Canada, North America Industry: Food and Beverage, Other Date: February 2021

Why this is important to Wisconsin businesses: Refrigeration needs for food, as well as medical products and specimens, have grown with the pandemic, and companies with innovative solutions stand out.

The challenge of perishability and the need to preserve both food and non-food items at optimal temperatures to prevent spoilage are fueling growth in the refrigerated trucking market in Canada and the U.S. The growth in refrigerated warehouse capacity in both countries has had led to growth in the refrigerated logistics market. Because they are both geographically vast countries, Canada and the U.S. need to have refrigerated trucks and trailers for long-haul transportation. In addition, the cold chain in Canada and much of the U.S. faces unique challenges due to extreme variability in the weather, from hot summers to frigid winters.

The demand for temperature-controlled logistics continues to grow, as perishable food items and medicines must be consistently kept in a specific, and sometimes narrow, temperature range throughout the cold chain until they reach consumers. Inappropriate food management in the cold chain can cause food waste if it creates localized oversupplies or prolongs storage periods, or if suboptimal storage conditions decrease food shelf life. As vendors seek to avoid this type of waste, both refrigerated trucking companies and perishable food manufacturers can help meet this demand.

On a related note, the pharmaceutical market in Canada and the U.S. continues to grow at a steady rate year over year. This growth will drive increased demand for refrigerated transportation and warehousing of pharmaceutical products, since pharmaceutical products must be maintained at a precise temperature to maintain their efficacy. Time and temperature are two vital factors to be taken into consideration when transporting medicines, and transporting biological materials such as blood and tissue samples must also be done at extremely low temperatures. Therefore, it is critical to transport medical products and specimens under temperature-controlled conditions over a long distance, and refrigerated trucking companies are exploring ways to deliver advanced solutions for biological researchers and labs.

With a growing trend of consolidation in the global health care logistics market, vendors are also offering value-added services such as loading and unloading, inventory management tools and other supply chain–related services.