Citrus sources say the facility will make a major contribution to the South African citrus industry, achieving its Vision 260 objectives

South African citrus sources have hailed the opening of MSC’s new coldstore facility near the port of Durban, saying it will help the industry to reach its target of shipping 260m cartons by 2032.

MSC containers Adobe Stock

The MEDLOG cold store facility, located close the port of Durban, is the first such facility that MSC has built anywhere in the world.

Managing director Rosario Sarno, who opened the facility, commented on MSC’s long association with the South African export industry.

“One element of Vision 260 (growth in local citrus exports to 260m cartons by 2032) is the availability of coldstores to handle the future volume,” said Justin Chadwick, CEO of the South African Citrus Growers’ Association.

“This R350m coldstore is a significant development in ensuring this future capacity as it can accommodate 10,000 pallets and is less than 10km from the Port of Durban.”

Soren Toft, chief executive of MSC, also attended the event. He said the first MSC vessel sailed to Durban in 1971, more than 50 years ago.

“A large part of the growth of the southern African citrus industry is due to MSC shipping services, ensuring that good quality citrus was delivered timeously to all corners of the globe,” Chadwick continued.

“MSC calls at 520 ports in 150 countries and this allows a good spread of our citrus to markets around the world,” he added.

The importance of the investment in the Kwa-Zulu Natal province was also recognised by premier Nomusa Dube-Ncube, who welcomed improvements to the supply chain that supported perishable, time sensitive and temperature sensitive cargo.