Shipping group Hapag-Lloyd has placed a record order for reefer containers, with the production of 970 20ft containers and 12,450 40ft containers scheduled to commence as early as July.
Delivery of the refrigerated containers, which have traditionally been white as opposed to Hapag-Lloyd’s orange standard containers, is set for November 2019 – or right in time for reefer season, as that is when harvest season begins in countries in the Southern Hemisphere.
Products will primarily be fruits and vegetables – such as blueberries, cherries and avocados from Chile, Peru and elsewhere – but also fish and meat that will be making their way to consumers in these containers.
“With this new order, we will be expanding our transport capacities for our customers," said Niklas Ohling, senior director container steering at Hapag-Lloyd. "They will now have at their disposal over 100,000 state-of-the-art refrigerated containers with a total capacity of 210,000 TEU, some of which will be equipped with the latest Controlled Atmosphere technology, which slows the ripening process during transport, thereby extending the shelf life of fruit and vegetables.
"The production of the reefer containers will also be the starting signal for the fleet-wide equipping of reefers with the latest IoT monitoring technology," he continued. "The resulting customer products will be marketed under the name Hapag-Lloyd LIVE. The product features of Hapag-Lloyd LIVE will be gradually made available to customers as the installation of the equipment proceeds and will offer real-time GPS positioning, information on the temperature inside the container, and systems for notifications and alarm management, among other features.
“In recent years, we have continuously invested in the expansion and modernisation of the reefer fleet," Ohling added. "We have consolidated our leading position in this market segment and can offer our customers outstanding quality in the transport of temperature-sensitive goods on all trades routes."