MCI enhances its reefer container system for perishables transport

MCI enhances its reefer container system for perishables transport

Extending the profitable market reach of high-value perishables, Maersk Container Industry (MCI) has launched an extension of its established controlled-atmosphere system.

Effectively controlling the ripening process, the Star Cool CA+ system extends the market reach of sensitive low-respiring perishables such as blueberry and lychee, reaching their destination in optimal condition without overripening or decaying during transit.

With increased consumer demand worldwide for a variety of fresh produce, the Star Cool CA+ system provides new cost-effective trade opportunities for fruit growers, shipping lines and food retailers, as well as an increase in choice and quality for consumers—regardless of regional seasons.

“Demand for a large variety of fruit and vegetables is increasing throughout the year,” said Søren Leth Johannsen, chief commercial officer at MCI. “We further developed our existing controlled-atmosphere system with the specific goal of supporting our customers in tapping into these trade opportunities by enabling them to reach more distant markets with low-respiring perishables, which typically also have a high value.”

Compared with high-respiring perishables such as bananas and avocados, low-respiring perishables require a different composition of the atmosphere in the container. Building on its Star Cool CA system for high-respiring fresh produce, MCI developed the enhanced CA+ functionality in close cooperation with experts and selected shipping lines and applied data gathered from some 40,000 Star Cool CA units in operation worldwide.

“The use of controlled-atmosphere (CA) for transport of low-respiring commodities such as blueberries is a crucial technological contribution to enable perishables to reach their destination in optimum quality,” said Bruno Defilippi Bruzzone, agronomic engineer and head of Postharvest Unit at the Institute for Agricultural Research (INIA), La Platina Experimental Research Center, Chile. “Using CA technology during transit, like MCI’s advanced system, provides multiple new benefits for low-respiring perishables, such as a reduction in fruit metabolism, improved decay control, extended shelf life and reduced losses for the growers and exporters.”

The Star Cool CA+ system provides shipping companies with direct access to data on conditions inside the reefer throughout the entire transportation window, without needing to rely on a third-party controlled-atmosphere provider. This reduces costs, increases transparency and provides consolidated data about the condition of cargo during shipping.

Star Cool CA+ can be easily added to MCI’s Star Cool reefers, either delivered pre-installed from the factory or as CA Ready for later in-field upgrade.

Watch this animation to see how the Star Cool CA+ system extends the reach of perishables:

Find out more about Star Cool CA at

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