All throughout the year, truckloads of fresh fruits and vegetables are moved across the country on a daily basis. Given the fragile nature of these natural bounties, many factors need to be considered to ensure they’re delivered on time and in great shape. That means working with a trustworthy logistics service that is well-equipped to transport food.
Unlike transporting other goods, like books, furniture, or electronics, shipping food comes with unique challenges that make it tricky to carry out. The packing, shipping, and delivery processes are often much more time-sensitive, as food is subject to spoilage.
Here are three tips to safely ship food during produce season:
Packaging is one of the most essential parts of keeping food in top condition while traveling across states to arrive at its final destination. The appropriate boxes and packing materials protect food from damage and getting soggy during its journey, which will also shield it from contamination. The package’s sturdiness is crucial to ensuring food quality and safety, which will help it last longer.
Different fruits and vegetables require different types of packaging. They need to be kept dry as much as possible to prevent bacteria and mold growth. Hence, padded packaging is essential when transporting these goods. Extra space in the box must be filled with bubble wrap or soft material to prevent bruising.
Once you’ve settled on the most optimal packaging for your food products, it’s time to choose your cold storage containers. Produce items are typically sensitive to temperature, as they can perish in warm and humid conditions. Shipping food in cold containers will preserve the freshness and quality of food while protecting them from extreme weather conditions.
It’s also important to choose storage with the appropriate insulation, packaging materials, and refrigerants. Robust and insulated foam storage is essential for frozen items like seafood or meat. Gel packs are also incredibly useful for cooling food.
However, these can lead to soggy boxes. To avoid this, line your packaging’s interior with plastic so that it can trap the moisture and prevent it from seeping into the outer box.
Lastly, the key to safely and efficiently ship food during produce season is to pick the right shipping option. Food products cannot afford to wait, as each moment they spend out of optimal conditions leads to a decline in quality. That’s why they must be shipped out as soon as possible and with carriers experienced in transporting fresh produce. They are well-versed in ensuring that these goods arrive in top condition.
In fact, total transit time for produce should not exceed 30 hours for maximum quality. As there’s usually plenty of congestion during the weekend, it’s best to ship them earlier in the week, like Monday or Tuesday.
Although produce is exceptionally perishable, it’s entirely possible to ship them across the country while preserving its quality and freshness. By keeping these three tips in mind, you’ll ensure that your produce is kept fresh, which will help you make the most out of produce season.
If you need a reliable shipper to safely transport your goods, let us know at RJS Logistics! We are a logistics company based in North Carolina that serves the US. We are experienced in multiple transportation modes, such as dry van, reefer, flatbed, intermodal, and rail. We specialize in on-time deliveries, ensuring that you get your goods when you need them. Get in touch with us today to see how we can help you!