Greatly boosting the ability to store and export temperature-sensitive agricultural products, thereby minimising food loss and waste

Cambodia’s first cross-docking warehouse – Kandal Cold Storage Project – has opened for operations along the banks of the Mekong River in Kandal province.

It was designed to prevent food waste and agricultural products that are sensitive to temperature.

Cross-docking is a logistics technique that aims to accelerate goods delivery and increase supply chain efficiency. It involves unloading goods from vehicles making incoming shipments at a logistics facility and transferring them to vehicles handling outgoing shipments, requiring little or no storage time in between. It has been hailed as a game changer for logistics in Cambodia.

The new cross-docking facility was officially opened on Wednesday morning at the Phnom Penh Autonomous Port by Bridgette L. Walker, the US Embassy’s Deputy Chief of Mission in Cambodia.

The opening ceremony was attended by representatives from the Cambodian government, the governments of the United Kingdom, Australia, Switzerland, and Singapore, as well as InfraCo Asia and Khmer Cold Chain.

The Kandal Cold Storage Project is an initiative by InfraCo Asia through Khmer Cold Chain (KCC).

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Walker said: “USAID’s co-investment with Khmer Cold Chain is an important step forward for Cambodia.”

“This facility will boost regional and international trade, prevent food spoilage, and provide economic benefits for businesses and customers alike.

“The facility is the first of its kind in Cambodia and will provide valuable services to dozens of import and export customers, directly and indirectly benefiting thousands of Cambodian farmers and consumers,” she added.

The 6,046-cubic-metre cross-docking facility in Kandal province’s Kien Svay district would greatly boost Cambodia’s ability to store and export temperature-sensitive agricultural products, thereby minimising food loss and waste.

USAID supports KCC through the “Feed the Future” Market Systems and Partnerships (MSP) Activity, which is one of several USAID initiatives in Cambodia that are increasing cold storage and logistical capability for agricultural uses.

This first-of-its-kind facility was made possible in part through a $2 million partnership between USAID and KCC, with $999,604 from USAID and $1,017,605 in co-investment from KCC.

It targets market system impediments to import-export prospects for major corporations, small and medium-sized businesses, and agricultural cooperatives, with an emphasis on enhancing access for smallholder farmers as well as women and youth-owned firms.

The facility will include a 50-foot cross-dock to serve Cambodian and regional farmers, agribusinesses, food processors, pharmaceutical enterprises, food merchants, and hotel and restaurant catering businesses.

According to the feasibility assessment, Cambodia’s present cold storage capacity must be increased by 140,000 cubic metres by 2030 to suit its supply chain demands.

The space would include facilities such as pre-cooling, co-packing and labelling, sanitary and phytosanitary services (SPS), picking, and direct store delivery.

These services will help increase Cambodia-based small-and-medium enterprises (SME) ability to access higher-value domestic markets.

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