Cover Image
close this bookCARE Food Manual (CARE , 1998, 355 p.)
close this folderChapter 7 - Storage and Handling
close this folderII. Selecting Food Storage Facilities
close this folderB. Types of Warehouse Space Available
View the document(introduction...)
View the document1. Commercial
View the document2. Government and Counterpart Storage Facilities
View the document3. Transit Warehouses and Sheds
View the document4. Open Storage
Open this folder and view contents5. CARE Owned and Managed Warehouses


Assessment should begin with an inventory of all facilities that may be available for storage of food at primary, secondary and distribution sites. In all cases, leasing arrangements or contracts for warehouse services must be in writing. See Agreements and Contracts.

1. Commercial

If commercial storage space is available, CARE should do an analysis of rental charges, and where appropriate, review rates with donors. Some country offices prefer not to rent warehouse space because of restrictions on the schedules of warehouse staff, limitations on use of equipment, incompatible systems for accounting and infestation control, and difficulties in collecting claims. However, these issues are usually negotiable if the warehouse is otherwise suitable.

Agrobusinesses and commercial distributors may have warehouses that can be made available temporarily for a short-term operation. Agricultural warehouses are often located close to rural production areas, while commercial distributors are generally in urban and town centers.

2. Government and Counterpart Storage Facilities

In many countries national, provincial, or local government stores are available. Encourage host governments and counterpart organizations to provide warehouse space at no cost before the project begins. If warehouse space must be rented or leased from the government, monthly fees should be nominal.

Local community leaders or associations can provide rooms in schools or churches, or village huts, in addition to local stores.

3. Transit Warehouses and Sheds

Some clearing and forwarding agents operate large transit warehouses for receipt, consolidation, and dispatch of cargo. Railroads often operate transit sheds to facilitate the loading and discharge of goods. However a transit shed is not a warehouse. It is meant for short-term storage only, and charges generally accrue on a daily or weekly basis. Transit sheds can be very expensive over extended periods of time.

Many different people may have access to transit sheds. CARE food could be stored together with non-CARE material, increasing the potential for loss or damage.

4. Open Storage

In emergency situations in remote regions, food may have to be stored on open ground without cover or security, thus more vulnerable to spoilage and theft. In these cases, finding high ground is critical. Open storage should be considered temporary.

a. Construction of Storage Space

Where there is insufficient or inadequate private or government warehouse capacity, country offices may have to consider constructing temporary or permanent warehouses.

Permanent structures should be built after all other possibilities for obtaining warehouses have been explored and usually only for long-term, emergency operations. In general, CARE should not be in the business of constructing and managing its own warehouses.

This will require the approval of CARE USA Headquarters, regional managers and donors where CARE USA is the lead member. Where U.S. Government food is programmed by another CI lead member, the Regional Manager at CARE USA Headquarters and U.S. Government donors must also approve any construction.

b. Prefabricated Warehouses

If building materials are not available locally or if time is a factor, especially in emergencies, use prefabricated storage facilities or even tents. A variety of prefabricated warehouses (e.g., Rubb and Viink Halls) with total capacities from 350-400 MT are available.