Keep Your Cool: Top Challenges in Temperature-Controlled Logistics

Maria Callegari Maria Callegari September 28, 2023
Keep Your Cool: Top Challenges in Temperature-Controlled Logistics

Managing temperature-controlled transportation has become  more pressing in today's changing climate of rising energy costs and inflation. Temperature-control shipping companies are leveraging solutions to tackle many of the challenges in temperature-controlled logistics, utilizing advanced technology and strategic partnerships to enhance energy efficiency, enable real-time monitoring, and ensure regulatory compliance throughout the cold chain. 

In this blog, we will explore the intricate logistics involved in transporting items with limited shelf life, the hurdles logistics companies face in ensuring that these goods reach their destination in prime condition, and what unique solutions Edge Logistics provides in combating these issues. 

The Crucial Role of Temperature Control

Temperature-controlled logistics drive the food value chain that significantly contributes to a country's GDP, but it's also vital for ensuring product quality and public safety. When the cold chain fails to maintain temperature control, it can lead to product spoilage, health risks, and economic instability, especially given that fluctuations in food prices can disproportionately affect inflation. Therefore, despite many challenges, temperature control is an economic and public well-being imperative. 

The Age-old Challenges of Temperature-Controlled Logistics

Remarkably, the advent of refrigerated trucks is less than 100 years old, illustrating how quickly the industry has adapted to meet ever-changing demands and scale farther distances. These challenges are more than just operational roadblocks; they define the landscape and act as a litmus test that separates industry leaders from those merely keeping up. 

Challenge 1: Maintaining the Cold Chain

Maintaining a consistent cold chain is complex, especially given a product's various touchpoints, from production to the consumer. On average, our food travels 1,500 miles from farm to table. Risks of temperature fluctuations during every handoff and every mile can compromise product quality and safety, necessitating robust controls and constant vigilance.

Through Edge’s proprietary freight matching platform CAPACITY and their use of the through carrier vetting program, Highway, Edge can guarantee your load is covered swiftly and with only the most compliant and efficient carrier. Edge also understands the sensitivity behind temperature controlled shipments and how crucial the right equipment is to preserving product quality.  Edge’s network of over 30,000 carriers can assure your goods are transported on only the most optimum trailers with advanced refrigeration and temperature monitoring systems.

Challenge 2: Regulatory Compliance

Adhering to regulations and standards is another significant hurdle in temperature-controlled transportation. Failure to follow rules and regulations leads to fines, legal actions, freight claims, and a tarnished reputation. Moreover, meticulous record-keeping is essential for traceability and accountability, making this challenge twofold. As sustainability regulations continue to unfold, compliance becomes more challenging. Through Edge’s use of Highway and their elite compliance team, Edge guarantees safety and compliance every step of the way and is committed to solving any potential issues that may arise.

Challenge 3: Supply Chain Visibility

Despite technological advancements, supply chain visibility remains elusive for many companies. As of 2018, survey results show only 6% of firms reported having complete visibility within their supply chains, and a more recent study indicates only a slight improvement, with just 13% of companies achieving supply chain visibility. Visibility represents an ongoing challenge and the importance of achieving transparency in logistics. 

Challenge 4: Product Integrity and Quality

Ensuring the integrity and quality of temperature-sensitive products is an ongoing battle that requires diligent attention. Compromised product integrity can lead to substantial product loss, significant financial setbacks, extensive waste, and cause harm to consumers. Therefore, it becomes imperative for businesses to invest in robust controls and systems that can effectively monitor and maintain the desired temperature conditions throughout the supply chain.

Challenge 5: Energy Efficiency and Sustainability

Lastly, the environmental impact and energy consumption of temperature-controlled logistics are growing concerns. The fact that around 70% of cold storage warehouses in the U.S. are over two decades old suggests that many facilities are likely operating with outdated, energy-inefficient systems. Combine this with the staggering estimate that the logistics industry accounts for 60% of the world's carbon emissions, and it becomes clear that the sector has a long way to go in adopting sustainable practices. 

As the logistics sector grapples with substantial challenges around sustainability, companies like Edge Logistics are stepping up to the plate. By leveraging technology for real-time monitoring and emphasizing energy efficiency, we are pushing the envelope on what is achievable in sustainability and efficiency. 

In Temperature-Controlled Logistics, the Right Provider is Key

Selecting the right logistics provider is not just a matter of convenience; it's a critical business decision that can significantly impact your bottom line and brand reputation. Partnering with a capable and innovative logistics provider can be the difference between merely surviving in the industry and thriving in it. 

Scalable Services: The right provider offers scalable services that grow with you and provide flexibility in capacity, ensuring that you can meet the rising demands of your clients while maintaining cost-effectiveness. 

Tech-Enabled Solutions: A leading logistics provider should offer tech-enabled solutions that facilitate real-time communication, tracking, and accountability to give you the peace of mind that comes from having complete visibility into your supply chain.

Options for Diverse Shipping Needs: Whether you're shipping perishable goods or sensitive pharmaceuticals, temperature-controlled shipping companies should offer a wide range of assets to meet the diverse demands of shippers. From specialized refrigerated trucks to advanced monitoring systems, these options enable you to tailor your logistics strategy to your unique requirements.

When you partner with a logistics provider that aligns with your business goals and operational needs, you ensure a smoother, more reliable, temperature-controlled supply chain.

Mastering Temperature-Controlled Logistics with Edge Logistics

As we've explored, the world of temperature-controlled logistics is fraught with complexities, from maintaining a robust cold chain to navigating regulatory mazes. However, these challenges are not insurmountable, especially with the right logistics partner at your side. 

Edge Logistics is leading the way in overcoming challenges in temperature-controlled logistics with our Edge Capacity for shippers that includes:

  • Instant Quoting in Real Time: Make decisions quickly and efficiently.
  • Live Freight Tracking: Always know where your shipments are.
  • Easy POD Download: Streamline your administrative tasks.
  • 24/7 Bilingual Support: Help is available anytime you need it.

Take the first step toward a more efficient supply chain by requesting a quote from Edge today.

About the Author

Maria Callegari

Maria Callegari