Marty Khait, co-founder and managing principal at Yukon Real Estate Partners, and author of R&FF’s special series, Farm to Frozen, joins R&FF Editor in Chief Kelley Rodriguez on From the Cold Corner to discuss what’s ahead in 2024 for the U.S. cold storage market.

There’s been quite a bit of activity this year in terms of groundbreakings and new facilities being opened. A few of the highlights include:

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There were groundbreakings throughout the U.S., in Kansas City, Mississippi, Houston, Charleston, Wilmington and the list goes on.

“I think that's only a partial list, but it's an exciting list - it's a big list,” Khait said. “It's a bigger list than we've ever seen. To me, it seems like the projects that were delivered this past year were also the most varied.”

In the last year or so, Khait said he’s seen more developers and owner/operators diverge in the design and construction of cold storage projects.

“We’ve seen them experiment and that's been fun to watch. We saw two smaller format buildings get delivered in Massachusetts, they're less than 100,000 square feet. We saw mobile racking be utilized. We saw buildings designed for multi-tenant situations. These are things that weren't contemplated before,” he said. “I'm just excited to see, you know as these buildings get delivered, as they get filled up with food and product, to see what shakes out – you know, is there a prototype?”

The bigger takeaway from 2023, Khait said, is the new entrants in the cold storage business.

“You have to think that they are really competing for a lot of the same customers so ultimately this is an incredible thing for our cold supply chain.”

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