Think about your product, do you know the most effective storage solution for it? Working with a quality 3PL can give you a competitive advantage when it comes to storage, distribution and transportation, but how do you know what facility is the right fit for you? Some products have strict storage requirements such as a frozen space or hazardous certification. Learning about the different types of warehouse spaces will help you to know what type of logistics provider and warehouse space you are looking for.
Some of the most common warehouse spaces are:
Temperature Controlled Warehouses
Depending on region – warehouses in the Midwest generally stay under 90 degrees F in the summer and we always heat our warehouses to 55 degrees F in the winter. Most of the products and material that utilize warehouse space will utilize dry or ambient storage. This is the most efficient and cost effective warehouse space option and many products do not have specific temperature or facility requirements when it comes to the storage environment.
Air conditioned spaces are used for product that has a melting point above 75 degrees F. Products that require humidity control will also need to be stored in air conditioned spaces.
Refrigerated warehouse spaces are cooled to maintain temperatures below 55 degrees F. Cold storage can be found within these facilities which is cooled to just above freezing or 32 degrees F. Products that need to stay cold, but should not be frozen, such as raw materials, food ingredients and some fresh produce or vegetables are generally stored in a refrigerated or cold storage warehouse.
The coldest of all temperature controlled warehouse spaces is a freezer room. Products that must stay frozen to preserve or protect them are found in these rooms. Freezer storage will always maintain a temperature of below 32 degrees F, but can get much colder depending on storage requirements for the products held there.
Temperature controlled warehouse spaces can be an entire facility or a dedicated room within a facility. Learn about what options your warehouse provider has to find the best fit for your product lines.
Food Grade/Medical Grade Warehouses
Food grade or medical grade storage spaces are the cleanest in the industry. There are many strict requirements and certifications needed to store food or medical grade products in a storage facility. With 3rd party certifications and FDA/USDA audits, facilities must be ready to show that they are a safe environment for food or medical supplies. Murphy’s facilities are all food grade, certified by FDA and USDA policies as well as SQF (Safe Quality Food) certifications. See all of our certifications here.
Dangerous products such as chemicals or highly flammable items stored within a warehouse require extreme training and facility safety programs. In order to keep the products, workers and environment safe, employees are trained to handle each product effectively. With handling procedure sheets, safety courses and quarantine steps, haz-mat certified facilities ensure that everybody is prepared to handle some of the toughest products in the world.
Facilities dedicated to distribution and product fulfillment are extremely technical and precisely designed buildings. With thousands of small orders being produced daily, becoming faster and more efficient with every item is crucial for the storage facility. Workflow automation, highly technical order picking tools and artificial intelligence are all used to ensure accuracy and efficiency.
No matter what type of product you have, a 3PL facility can fit your needs. Many facilities have dedicated rooms for specialty services such as order fulfillment and distribution or temperature controlled space. Knowing what type of facility is best for your product is the first step to choosing the right 3PL provider. Follow the rest of our steps here in our blog series “Choosing The Right 3PL”. Follow this series to learn about types of 3PL warehouses, facilities and transportation solutions!
Have a wonderful day!