On Wednesday, November 23, Lineage Logistics officially took its Cool Port II in the Port of Rotterdam into use. With a ceremonial push of a button and in the presence of staff and business partners, Harld Peters, Mark Ketelaar (both Lineage), Rob Scholte (Lamb Weston Meijer), and Frederik Zevenbergen (Province of South Holland) opened the fully automated high-rise warehouse freezer. Then, bundled into warm coats, guests got a tour of the new building.
Whereas most of Cool Port I's bulk is imported fruit, Cool Port II will mainly store especially fruit destined for export. The state-of-the-art building - 45% more energy efficient than a conventional cold store - is 40 meters high, contains 60,000 pallet locations, and is fully automated. Self-offloading or conventional trucks bring in the pallets, which pass through three automatic truck offloading systems.
They automatically make their way from the shipping hall via roller conveyors, turntables, and locks into the cold store, where cranes automatically move the pallets into place. "Human hands don't touch the products until they leave the cold store again," Cool Port II general manager Eric Velthuijzen said earlier.
The facility boasts advanced automation solutions. These help address the current 'volatility' in the labor market, provide fast, efficient customer service, and reduce site energy consumption. Lineage can also ensure food safety and reduce food waste. "Cool Port II uses data-driven solutions to optimize energy use, with precise refrigeration cycles to minimize energy leakage. And the high-rise design maximizes storage density and reduces the site's energy footprint."
Harld, who previously referred to Cool Port II as 'our greatest source of pride,' kicked off the event. "Our new facility highlights that best-in-class approach that makes Lineage a unique, forward-thinking partner for our customers. Besides being strategically located, Cool Port II utilizes the latest automation technology."
"We want to be a driving force in making the supply chain greener by investing in our people and facilities to deploy state-of-the-art cold storage technology. Thus, we can reduce our energy footprint while providing the solutions our clients need to deliver food safely and efficiently across Europe and beyond," the President of Lineage Europe stated, tackling one of the company's biggest challenges.
"We're proud to open this ultra-modern, multi-modular facility, which connects well via roads, railways, and inland waterways. It's also the only cold store in Rotterdam connected to the Short Sea Terminals," added Mark, regional vice president for Benelux at Lineage. "We strive to give Lineage's customers easy access to a strong, growing network to deliver their product safely and efficiently. Cool Port II offers a full range of services and state-of-the-art facilities to maximize products that have been entrusted to our care's efficient, safe handling."
Rob Scholte, Chief Supply Chain Officer of Lamb Weston, said he was honored to speak on behalf of the potato processor. This launch partner and long-time client representative admitted that it was not easy to follow the first two speakers but that he is delighted with "the realization of this wonderful project."
"I look forward to many more wonderful years of cooperation," said Rob. Derek Jan van Rees, Regional Director of Operations Lineage, introduced Frederik Zevenbergen as the last speaker. Frederik, a South Holland provincial executive member, jokingly invited himself to attend the opening of Cool Port III.
And indeed, although this new facility has just been opened, this temperature-controlled logistics specialist's gaze has already turned to a new project. Cool Port III is to be built right next to Cool Port II. Construction will not begin for a while, but the plans were regularly mentioned. For now, however, the afternoon ended with drinks, celebrating the completion of this 'new first-class cold storage facility'.