Hello, and welcome to the coolest community in freight! Here you’ll find the latest information on warehouse news, tech developments and all things reefer madness-related. I’m your controller of the thermostat, Mary O’Connell. Thanks for having me!

All thawed out

(Photo: Jim Allen/FreightWaves)

Walmart spreads its wings again but this time not in the form of  a new store. Walmart announced the $257 million investment in Olathe, Kansas, to open a beef-packing plant. This new facility is expected to open in 2025, which is a ways away, but the good news is it will create more than 600 jobs for the Olathe area. The new facility will primarily focus on higher grades of beef, primarily the Angus beef from Sustainable Beef that Walmart has a minority stake in. 

Also doing its own acquiring, Unilever is acquiring Yasso Holdings, a manufacturer of frozen Greek yogurt snacks. Yasso has threaded the needle of consumer desire by offering a comfort food that’s healthier than the ice cream alternatives. This isn’t Unilever’s first foray into the dairy side of the freezer aisle as Yasso will join its current portfolio that includes Ben & Jerry’s, Magnum and Talenti. If anything, this cements Unilever’s claim to take over the ice cream section. 

Temperature checks

(Photo: CPKC news release)

Canadian Pacific Kansas City has added 1,000 new 53-foot refrigerated intermodal containers. This addition more than doubles the existing fleet size. There is no doubt that the increase in refrigerated intermodal containers comes right after the announcement of the Mexico Midwest Express lane. This lane focuses on shippers with goods going from Mexico to the Midwest, with the inclusion now of temperature-controlled shippers. This new rail line is a single-line haul, including cross-border service that makes CPKC rail on par with trucks that commonly haul this freight but reduces emissions with the rail option. 

Also on the expansion front, Lebanon, Indiana, is the home of an expansion in temperature-controlled warehouse space. NewCold, an automated temperature-controlled warehouse company, is expanding its facility in Lebanon for a cool $300 million price tag. This expansion will add about 100 jobs in the Lebanon area as well as make it the largest automated cold storage facility in the U.S. Better alert Guinness World Records.  

Food and drugs

(Image: Transmedic news release)

Organ transportation has come a long wayfrom the ice and a cooler that has been the traditional method of transporting organs since the 1950s. This method of transport, while effective, came with many limitations, the primary one being the distance the organ could travel. Organs could only be kept in the cooler for a maximum of four hours. Also, there was a tricky problem of freezer burn on organs transported within the cooler as temperature wasn’t regulated throughout the transportation. 

All of that is about to change as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved a new way to transport donated organs. After quite a few clinical trials, a new organ donation transport device has been cleared for use. According to Duke University Med School’s publication the battery-powered device “maintains the organ in a functioning state, perfusing it with warm, nutrient- and oxygen-rich blood, using wireless technology to monitor the organ and allow longer time for transportation.” This device is currently available for heart and lung transplants, with the liver soon to come, through Transmedics.

Cold chain lanes


This week’s market is in the corner of the Pacific Northwest, Seattle. Seattle’s reefer outbound tender volumes have dropped 33.75% week over week (w/w). On the flip side, reefer outbound tender rejections have risen 238 basis points w/w. This sharp rise in rejections and decrease in volumes signals a tightening in capacity for the reefer market in Seattle. Since reefer outbound tender rejections are above 25% in Seattle, carriers can expect to see inflated spot rates coming out of Seattle. Spot rates will continue to climb as long as the Reefer Outbound Tender Volume Index  does. 

Is SONAR for you? Check it out with a demo!

Shelf life

The United States Government Cold Chain Project: Trinidad and Tobago – YouTube

This is how frozen custard came to be – YouTube

Tyson Foods to Lay off 228 Employees Near Chicago Who Decline Move to Arkansas

Global logistics expertise to improve patient outcomes in clinical trials

Is Cryoport (NASDAQ:CYRX) A Risky Investment?

Wanna chat in the cooler? Shoot me an email with comments, questions or story ideas at moconnell@freightwaves.com.

See you on the internet.


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The post Running on Ice: Acquisitions, expansions and organ transport appeared first on FreightWaves.

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