The Essential Rules of Temperature Controlled Logistics in 2024

The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed supply chain management. From localized production to an increased emphasis on quality assurance, companies have had to overhaul their supply chain operations in response to pandemic-driven restrictions.

Another significant impact of the pandemic on supply chain management is the growing importance of temperature-controlled logistics. With shipment delays rampant, maintaining cold chain temperature control has become an even more of a important component for quality assurance of sensitive goods in transit, such as:

  • Medicines
  • Vaccine vials
  • Raw meat
  • Frozen food
  • Fresh produce

Unlike conventional supply chain operations, temperature-controlled logistics require extensive monitoring and quality control. While the concept of cold chain temperature control isn’t new, shifting consumer demands and rapid advancement in digital technology are transforming its landscape.

It isn’t surprising that the global biopharmaceutical industry is projected to spend nearly $18.6 billion on cold supply chain logistics in 2024.

Let’s delve deeper into how the world of temperature-controlled logistics is changing. Also, we’ll discuss how manufacturers, suppliers, and retailers can adapt to changes in cold supply chain management. Let’s get started.

Temperature-Controlled Logistics: Understanding the Importance

Simply put, a temperature-controlled supply chain ensures the safe production, storage, and transportation of temperature-sensitive products. Even minor temperature excursions in the supply chain could render the products ineffective or unusable.

For instance, pharmaceutical compounds require specific temperatures to maintain stability. Any fluctuations in temperature could alter the chemical composition of these drugs. It’s often visible in the form of sedimentation or separation of emulsifying agents.

Spoilage and wastage of products before reaching the end destination are still fairly common in the pharmaceutical industry. Manufacturers in the F&B industry also face similar challenges.

Apart from causing financial losses, spoilage also compromises the safety of end consumers. That’s why regulatory bodies, such as the European Union and World Health Organization, have established certain standards governing the transportation of temperature-sensitive products. Failing to comply with these regulations could have legal consequences.

Today’s organizations are compelled to deploy the right temperature-controlled logistics infrastructure for the safe and timely delivery of their products.

Temperature-Controlled Logistics in 2024: A Closer Look

In 2024, temperature-controlled logistics will no longer be about simply transporting goods in refrigerated units. Instead, manufacturers and logistics providers will need to focus on preempting and mitigating crises, such as delays and equipment malfunctions.

Choosing the Right Freight

When it comes to temperature-sensitive products, air freight might seem like the most suitable option for transportation. However, the increasing costs of air freight have compelled organizations to explore sea freight as a potential alternative.

While sea freight involves longer delivery periods, it’s safer and more cost-effective. Unlike air freight, cargo ships involve fewer touchpoints that expose products to ambient temperatures. Also, it’s easier for supply chain managers to monitor and control temperature excursions.

It’s up to company leaders to choose the most optimal transportation option based on consumer demands and other factors. Air freight will be better suited for emergencies, as well as remote, hard-to-reach locations. On the other hand, it’ll still be wiser to use sea freight when speed isn’t a priority.

Prioritizing Regulatory Compliance

Independent and federal authorities will continue to introduce new regulations and standards for the storage and transportation of temperature-sensitive goods. 

Supply chain managers and business leaders must stay abreast of the latest rules and guidelines pertaining to their area of operation.

Leveraging Digital Technology

From artificial intelligence and augmented reality to predictive analytics and the Internet of things (IoT) – modern tech innovations are ushering in a new era in the logistics industry. Companies can use these technologies for effective temperature monitoring and control throughout the supply chain.

For instance, data loggers are designed to capture real-time temperature data while products are being transported across various touchpoints. This helps workers at different levels of the supply chain to monitor the temperature and identify any excursions before they spiral out of control.

Combined with the power of machine learning algorithms, data loggers can alert workers about potential temperature excursions. This, in turn, helps supply chain managers deploy suitable rectification measures.

Watching Out for Cyberattacks

The increased dependence on data and technology will make temperature-controlled logistics vulnerable to cyberattacks. Many pharmaceutical companies have already been reeling from the consequences of previous cybersecurity breaches.

Such attacks could increase product spoilage, thus defeating the purpose of tech-driven cold chain monitoring. That’s why it is important for organizations to implement robust cybersecurity protocols to safeguard their cold supply chain.

As the pandemic continues to increase tech adoption in supply chain management, temperature-controlled logistics will also see several advancements. Company leaders should focus on harnessing the power of technology to predict and prevent temperature excursions.

About Carson Derrow

My name is Carson Derrow I'm an entrepreneur, professional blogger, and marketer from Arkansas. I've been writing for startups and small businesses since 2012. I share the latest business news, tools, resources, and marketing tips to help startups and small businesses to grow their business.