MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company announced the opening of a state-of-the-art 15,000-metre cold storage facility in Durban.

"The cold store, part of MSC’s Medlog logistics division, promises to catalyse advancements in the handling of perishable goods in South Africa and beyond, and will open up the country’s trade landscape," says an official release.

"The MSC Group has been an integral part of South Africa's maritime landscape since 1971 when it began operating here. The first MSC office in the country was then opened in 1978. Today, the Group operates various entities including Mediterranean Shipping Company, Mediterranean Shipping Depot, MSC Logistics (Medlog), MSC Technical and Shosholoza Operations. The breadth of MSC's presence is reflected in its extensive network here with six offices strategically located in Durban, Cape Town, East London, Johannesburg, Port Elizabeth and Pretoria."

Soren Toft, CEO, MSC

Soren Toft, CEO, MSC says: "“This investment marks an exciting new milestone for exporters and importers of fresh produce across South Africa. It exemplifies our ongoing efforts to provide value-added services to our customers while contributing to the development of the local economy. We want to help South Africa achieve its vision to become sustainable, economically prosperous and self-reliant.”

Toft underscored MSC's dedication to realising President Cyril Ramaphosa's vision of fostering investment and job creation in the country, citing investments exceeding 1 billion rand in infrastructure and employment-generating projects.

Supporting imports and exports
The cold storage facility has a capacity of 8,000 to 10,000 pallets, the release added. "Strategically located as a hub for both imports and exports, the facility represents a paradigm shift in storage and logistics capabilities for South Africa. Import commodities that can now be expanded include goods such as chicken sourced from Brazil, the USA and Poland while exports primarily comprise citrus destined for markets in Europe, the Middle East and Far East/Asia."

Salvatore Sarno, Chairman, MSC South Africa says: "We are proud to unveil this state-of-the-art cold storage facility, which not only reinforces our dedication to supporting the South African economy but also underscores our commitment to job creation and economic growth."

Jose Carlos Garcia, Warehousing & Distribution Manager, MEDLOG adds: “The construction is of the highest quality. The building features convertible rooms to accommodate both chilled and frozen cargo as well as mobile racks to optimise space. The warehouse management system is fully integrated with the Perishable Produce Export Control Board (PPECB) database to ensure regulatory compliance and full traceability.”

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