Investor and occupier demand for temperature-controlled storage space is surging across the U.S. as online grocery shopping becomes more common. CBRE explores the key variables in the cold storage real estate sector: outsourcing to third-party logistics providers, growing e-grocery sales, the suitability of perishables storage facilities, and investment activity and new development.
Key Takeaways:
• E-commerce’s share of U.S. grocery sales is expected to reach 21.5% by 2025, spurring more demand for temperature-controlled warehouses nationwide.

• Speculative cold storage space under development totaled 3.3 million sq. ft. as of Q2 2022, up from just 300,000 sq. ft. in 2019.

• Despite the uptick in development, new entrants must navigate a challenging market, with high construction costs, complex user requirements and other barriers to entry.

• Investors are flocking to the sector. Nearly 40% of U.S. investors polled by CBRE in 2022 were pursuing cold storage assets, up from 7% in 2019.

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