Elements of the Cold Chain
A cold chain can functionally be considered as the close
interaction between three elements:
conditions within the cold chain must be consistent so that the
load and transport integrity of the shipments are maintained.
- Product. A product is characterized by
physical attributes requiring specific temperature and humidity
conditions. These conditions dictate its transport, which takes place in a manner
that does not undermine its physical attributes to an extent that
is judged acceptable. It mostly relates to how perishable and
fragile a product can be.
- Origin / Destination. A function of the
respective locations where a temperature-sensitive product is
produced and consumed. It is indicative of the potential
difficulty of making a product available at a market. Because of
advances in cold chain logistics, it became possible to use
increasingly distant sourcing strategies.
- Distribution. The methods and
infrastructures available to transport a product in a
temperature-controlled environment. It can involve temperature
controlled containers (reefers), trucks and warehousing