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Cold Xpress builds its eco-friendly practices with upgraded warehouse

Cold Xpress is preparing to move operations to a larger, retrofitted warehouse later this year while moving the eco-friendly needle

Victorian refrigerated transport company Cold Xpress is continuing to establish itself as an industry leader following the upgrading of an existing warehouse into a new, state-of-the-art storage facility set to work in tandem with its existing Rowville base.

The new facility is set to be able to hold 12,000 pallets once completed – it is currently in the fitout phase – but the need for the organisation’s expansion into a new, larger space has not come at the cost of maintaining a forward-thinking approach to renewable, eco-friendly industry practices.

Cold Xpress’ strength in the refrigerated delivery industry has necessitated the need to rapidly ensure it can meet growing demand for its services, but that doesn’t mean there’s a desire to maintain the status quo.

The new development is being completed in an existing 8000sqm warehouse structure, but the upgrades are headlined by the installation of a flagship 1000kw solar panel system that will not only ensure Cold Xpress is limiting its reliance on non-renewable energy and reducing its carbon footprint, but also embracing the desire to run its operations in a more sustainable and cost-effective manner.

It has already experienced a strong level of success with implementing solar panel systems to its existing 830 site, where a 700kw system has previously been installed to great effect.

Cold Xpress delivers a range of refrigerated goods – including food and beverages – to a range of locations all over metropolitan and regional Victoria. This new facility will enable the company to continue to provide top-tier and high-volume storage and delivery services, but also continue to meet the need to provide precise temperature control for a variety of products in both a more energy efficient and cost-effective manner.

This desire to reduce reliance on non-renewable energy and thus reduce the organisation’s carbon footprint is reflective of a broader industry trend that leans into the need to embrace forward thinking, renewable technology to limit the environmental impact of an industry that, traditionally, utilises an exceptional amount of energy in order to maintain base-level operations.

In addition to the flagship solar panel system – which will require additional reinforcement of the warehouse’s existing roof structure – Cold Xpress is shifting away from traditional refrigerants like R404a.

Production of R404a refrigeration equipment was banned in 2020, such is the negative environmental impact of the gas, while some manufacturers phased it out of production as early as 2018 to keep up with the growing desire to shift into more environmentally friendly practices.

Modern CO2 refrigeration units have instead taken the place of their traditional counterparts in Cold Xpress’ operations. Although CO2 is often thought of as a harmful greenhouse gas – it has been found these new CO2 refrigeration units are up to 4000x less harmful than systems using R404.

In addition to vastly reducing the potential environmental impact in the unlikely event of a leak, the move towards the modern CO2 units goes hand-in-hand with Cold Xpress’ desire to become more energy efficient, as they require less energy to run than their traditional counterparts.

The move towards more sustainable operations has also ensured Cold Xpress has been entered into the MHD Sustainable Warehouse Competition Award, to be presented at September’s MEGATRANS logistics conference.

A1 Precision Solutions has been contracted to oversee the project and building permits for the new facility have already been finalised.

The ability to commence a variety of different aspects of the retrofitting and upgrading will reduce the likelihood of any delays.

The project is estimated to be completed by October 2024 and will also include additional aspects like the increase of the number of loading docks in the facility, the installation of new, recycled pallet racks, and the addition of fire retardant, insulated sandwich panels to reduce refrigeration energy consumption.

Cold Xpress has been a forward-thinking entity since its establishment in 1998, and its rapid shift towards ensuring it is at the forefront of new, sustainable technology that can be harnessed to simultaneously reduce negative environmental impact and improve operations sees it maintain its place as an industry leader.

It is positioning itself as a preferred cold storage and logistics partner for companies that – like Cold Xpress itself – have place paramount importance in the implementation of environmentally friendly operational solutions at all levels of its business.

The strategic expansion in both warehouse size and forward-thinking practices will help ensure Cold Xpress is well-equipped to meet the evolving needs of its customers while continuing to lead its field in positive environmental practices and impact.

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