What Is Cold Chain Logistics and Why Is It Important

What Is Cold Chain Logistics and Why Is It Important?

With COVID-19 in full swing, hitting every corner of the world, concerns for vaccine transportation surfaced. The method that most governments and other entities have agreed upon is to use cold chain logistics.

But you may be asking yourself, what is cold chain logistics?

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Keep reading to discover what it is, the different sectors utilizing cold chain solutions and how it works.

What Is Cold Chain Logistics?

It’s very similar to traditional logistics with one significant difference – temperature control. Cold chain technology controls the movement of a product from its point of origin to its destination. The purpose is to ensure that the product stays temperature-controlled throughout the following three steps:

  1. Refrigerated production
  2. Distribution
  3. Storage

Cold chain management must be diligent because if one part of the process fails, the entire chain falls apart and ruins the product.

One of the major sectors to use cold chain logistics is the biopharmaceutical sector, and the other is food.

So while it seems like new technology, the truth is, cold chain solutions have been around for a while, but it’s not as widely known due to only two sectors heavily using its services.

Who Regulates the Logistics?

Suppose you’re a business owner dealing with temperature-sensitive products or work for a pharmaceutical company. In that case, it should give you a sense of comfort to know that there are cold chain logistics regulations created to help protect your product.

But what is cold chain regulation? A great example is a regulation set by the FDA. For example, the FDA sets minimum requirements that regulate storing and handling pharmaceuticals, including record keeping and logging temperatures.

The entities that regulate cold chain shipping are government agencies dedicated to the safety of transportation, food, and pharmaceuticals. These agencies include the following:

  • Department of Transportation
  • U.S. Customs
  • International Air Transport Association
  • Transportation Security Administration
  • Food and Drug Administration

The fact remains that food and pharmaceuticals that require specific temperatures to stay safe and not turn into something deadly, cold chain management must maintain its integrity.

However, no logistics company is perfect, and there are times when damages do occur.

Package Damage

A package could get damaged in several ways: these mechanical malfunctions, unforeseen events, and plain human error.

A mechanical malfunction involves anything from power outages, coolant failure, and even a lack of fuel. As a business owner or a company, unforeseen events are always something to be accounted for.

Thieves regularly target high-value cargo like food and medicine to resell on the black market at a premium. Also, no matter how regulated the logistics industry is, it can’t prevent every instance of human error.

Nobody’s perfect and accidentally leaving a temperature-controlled door open or missing a box to fill out on a form is always possible.

But don’t give up on cold chain logistics just yet! There are best practices you need to follow before shipping to protect your product.

There are a few best practices that you can check off your list before shipping your cargo. These include:

  • Being aware of the regulations
  • Proper packaging and labeling of the cargo
  • Pre-trip inspections
  • Maintaining constant communication with the logistics company

While there’s not much you can do once your cargo is out of your hands, constant communication can help to ease your worries until it reaches its destination.

Cold Chain and Your Business

What is cold chain logistics? It’s a management process that can seem complex but doesn’t have to be complicated. Following the best practices outlined above ensures the flow goes as smoothly as possible.

If you want to learn more about the logistics industry, check out some of our other recent blogs!

About Ambika Taylor

Myself Ambika Taylor. I am admin of https://hammburg.com/. For any business query, you can contact me at ambikataylors@gmail.com