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Perspectives d’évolution des conteneurs frigorifiques pour le transport de produits frais.

Perspectives on the evolution of reefer containers for transporting fresh produce


Refrigerated containers or 'reefers' are essential for transporting fresh fruit and vegetables in transnational supply chains. By refrigeration, they ensure that food quality is better preserved and food losses are reduced. Countries that produce fresh produce also unlock new markets for export through refrigerated container transport.

Scope and approach
The authors have worked in the research and development of reefer-facilitated supply chains for over two decades. Based on our research and engineering work with key stakeholders, we provide our perspective on how the industry will or should evolve. We also elaborate on upcoming trends and key bottlenecks the industry faces. This paper touches upon subjects relevant to the global fruit and vegetable trade. These topics involve (1) the fresh produce reefer market, (2) the climate inside the reefer, including temperature uniformity and controlled atmosphere trends, (3) sustainability aspects such as greenhouse gas emissions and potential energy savings, and (4) the move towards smart reefers and the use of digital food twins.

Key findings
We particularly encourage more research on using a controlled atmosphere to save energy and better preserve foods, the effectiveness of ethylene scrubbers in reefers, synergizing the data acquisition pipelines of different sensor systems, and integrating these data with other parts of the supply chain into one data ecosystem.

As future trends, we foresee a further reduction of the carbon footprint and developments in digital twins of the refrigerated container and its cargo to monitor and predict future fruit and vegetable quality during transit and beyond.


  • Titre original : Perspectives on the evolution of reefer containers for transporting fresh produce
  • Identifiant de la fiche : 30031327
  • Langues : Anglais
  • Sujet : Chiffres, économie, Technologie
  • Source : Trends in Food Science & Technology - vol. 140
  • Date d'édition : 10/2023
  • DOI :


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