As per the present day practice, cold stores can be classified mainly as follows:
1. Bulk Cold Stores – Generally for storage of a single commodity, these mostly operate on a seasonal basis e.g., stores for potato, chillies, apples and so on.
2. Multipurpose Cold Stores – These are designed for storage of variety of commodities which operate, practically, round the year. The products stored in these types of cold stores are fruits, vegetables, dry fruits, spices, pulses, and milk products. These units have been mainly located near the consuming centres.
3. Small Cold Stores – These come with precooling facilities for fresh fruits and vegetables, mainly, for export-oriented items like grapes. The major concentration of these units is in Maharashtra but the trend is now picking up in other states like Karnataka, Andhra, and Gujarat.
4. Frozen Food Stores – These come with or without processing and freezing facility for fish, meat, poultry, dairy products and processed fruits and vegetables. These units have helped the promotion and growth of frozen foods sector, both in the domestic and the export markets. However the percentage of foods so processed is extremely low and a great potential exists for growth in this category.
5. Mini Units / Walk-in Cold Stores – These are located at hotels, restaurants, malls, and supermarkets.
6. Controlled Atmosphere (CA) Stores – These are meant for certain fruits/ vegetables like apples, pears, and cherries.
7. Ripening Chambers – These are mainly setup for bananas and mangoes.