Breda, Netherlands-headquartered NewCold Advanced Cold Logistics has announced a project to build and operate an automated refrigerated warehouse that will be the biggest in Indiana and one of the largest in the United States. At 141 feet high (43 meters) and with capacity for over 100,000 pallet positions (as depicted in rendered image above), it will be approximately half the size of the Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts football team.
The cold storage complex in Lebanon, situated 28 miles northwest of Indianapolis, will be NewCold’s third facility in the USA, expanding a network that includes existing warehouses in Tacoma, Washington, and Burley, Idaho. Scheduled to open for business in 2022, the $150 million facility will generate between 150 and 200 new jobs. Site mobilization and construction activities are expected to begin within the next few weeks.
A major customer at the warehouse will be Chicago, Illinois-headquartered Conagra Brands, one of the USA’s leading food companies with a wide line of popular retail products ranging from frozen ready meals and taco skillet bowls to value-added vegetables and plant-based burgers.
“It is very pleasing to see our continued growth in North America as we seek to build a long-term strategic relationship with Conagra,” said Bram Hage, founder and chief executive officer of NewCold. “Our robust global pipeline includes the delivery of at least six new capital projects, as we continue to develop multiple large-scale automated facilities across Europe, Australia and North America. This momentum confirms a very positive future for customers and an innovation boost for the industry.”
Craig Weiss, senior vice president of supply chain and chief transformation officer for Conagra Brands, commented: “In modernizing our distribution network infrastructure as part of our overall supply chain strategy, we’re partnering with NewCold to develop a new, state-of-the-art distribution center that will support our growing frozen business so we can better meet the needs of our customers and consumers.”
Jonas Swarttouw, NewCold’s vice president for customer and business development in North America, added: “Collaborating with respected partners like Conagra drives our success, as we share an ambition to transform the industry and reimagine the global food supply chain. The NewCold team at our Chicago regional headquarters will be leading the development, implementation and start-up of the operation, in close cooperation with our partners and stakeholders.”
The new refrigerated warehouse in Indiana will employ state-of-the-art technology including automated storage and retrieval systems (ASRS) to move and store products in the high-bay facility. An advanced automated case picking solution for detailed order fulfillment activities is part of the investment. The equipment and operators will be directed by NewCold’s proprietary software systems, while products are kept in optimal conditions with all cold storage areas cooled down to sub-zero temperatures. This ensures that processes are sustainable, traceable and fully integrated with the processes of NewCold’s customers.