The correct planning of a cold store requires a feasibility study, which investigates market, distribution, technical and administrative solutions and routines and possible sites, assessing their suitability for the project in mind from a technical, as well as financial, point of view.
Each location of a cold store has a logical catchment area, where it is economic to operate with regard to transport of the products to be stored. Normally the main part of the business is done within this area.
Proper analysis of the existing and possible future market is an essential first step in the establishment of a cold store as this is a link in the preservation, processing and distribution of the fish landed. The store must therefore provide the service of freezing and frozen storage at the right time, place and price. The success of the operation is entirely dependant on the marketing strategies of the industry. There are other factors influencing the location from a construction and operating point of view. Examples are nature of ground, subsoil, topography of sites, availability of water, electrical services, labour and regulation to surrounding community, other industries, etc.
It is also important to provide space for movement and parking of vehicles and to allow for extensions. A cold store is not only a cold box, but needs handling areas, parking lots, plant rooms, roads, railway connections and different types of service buildings as discussed previously in this document.
The investigations mentioned must be carried out extremely thoroughly, since any one of them could greatly affect the cost of the project and eventually its entire feasibility. Very often it is necessary to compromise, when selecting the site, as the investigations will show one site being more acceptable from an operational point of view, whereas another is cheaper to develop from a construction point of view. It is advisable to utilise experts in some of the studies, especially those concerning market and technical solutions and for large-scale installations, which often have to be integrated in a nation-wide network, it is recommended that experienced experts carry through the study. Some factors influencing the design of the cold store are given in Appendix 5.