Temperature-controlled shipping is essential to maintaining our intricate and long supply chain that allows us to ship avocadoes from Mexico, berries from California, and vital vaccines from Connecticut to consumers all across the United States and beyond. This article helps shippers determine which reefer and freezer truck delivery service is best for their needs.
Shippers who send perishable items in trucks across long distances over the road have two options: reefers and freezers. Reefers are refrigerated trucks for goods that should be kept around 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Freezer trucks will keep goods around 0 degrees Fahrenheit. Both reefers and freezer trucks are important tools for shipping goods over the road from the origin to the final destination.
Currently, the temperature-controlled shipping market is growing. In 2023, the market was worth approximately $12.4 billion. That value is expected to grow by 11.2% between 2023 and 2030.
Maintaining the correct temperature is critical to meeting FDA regulations and preventing product spoilage. Carriers must demonstrate that goods remained at the proper temperatures throughout the entire journey and that any issues were addressed quickly and according to government standards.
Temperature control is vital for a variety of goods, including produce, dairy products, frozen goods, and certain pharmaceuticals. In addition to food spoilage and harmful bacteria growth, pharmaceuticals that get too warm or cold can lose their efficacy and be rendered unusable.
If something happens with temperature control and an excursion occurs, the items may not be fit for consumption and may spoil. This can lead to costs for carriers and a loss of business.
Finding the right freezer and reefer truck delivery service is more than ensuring the trucks maintain the right temperature. When looking for a good delivery service, evaluating potential partners by the following criteria will help businesses select the best partner for their needs.
An excellent carrier's most important trait is meeting all sanitation and safety standards for any shipment. Carriers, their employees, and contractors should be trained to follow all proper handling standards and maintain stringent oversight throughout the supply chain journey.
Industry regulations are a significant part of temperature-controlled shipping. Carriers should stay abreast of the latest changes—and proactively learn about new upcoming regulations. Great carriers will transparently communicate any changes or new regulations and how they will affect any shipments.
Shippers need an expansive background in the industry to ship temperature-controlled goods successfully. A great carrier won’t just be a good partner when things are going well, they’ll have the ability and expertise to properly address any issues that arise with minimal cost or effort from the client.
That experience will also mean carriers have significant knowledge of industry best practices such as pre-cooling. When room-temperature goods are placed in a refrigerated truck, the warmth of the goods causes the temperature in the truck to rise. Knowledgeable carriers will ensure that goods are pre-cooled to the proper temperature before being placed in a temperature-controlled truck. That way, the truck and goods will maintain the refrigerated or frozen temperature from the get-go.
When evaluating carriers, ensure they have a reputable service history. Ask a carrier for testimonials or speak with an existing client to learn more about their track record, strengths, and drawbacks.
An excellent delivery service also constantly strives to improve and upgrade. Innovation and adaptation to market changes are essential for a long-lasting carrier. Technology’s place in transportation is growing, and truly forward-thinking companies are looking to enhance their temperature, location, and route monitoring.
Today, carriers face a constantly changing market and mindset shifts, including new regulations, a need for carbon-neutral transportation, and a consumer demand for more environmentally and socially forward products that reduce waste and protect people and the environment.
In addition to consumer demand for more sustainable practices, companies looking for reefer and freezer truck delivery services are increasingly seeking more sustainable carriers. For many, that is a significant criterion for a new relationship.
Beware of greenwashing, where companies use buzzwords and marketing materials to make their operations seem sustainable even though they have changed very little. Ask questions of your carrier to learn how they’re truly making an impact in their carbon footprint and increasing the sustainability of their business.
Freezer and reefer trucks are the cornerstones of temperature-controlled shipping, but what really makes or breaks a shipment is the quality of the carrier. Great carriers are experienced and well-versed in all regulations and standards. Continental Logistics has over 50 years of experience in food logistics. Like the best carriers, Continental Logistics’ forward-looking approach focuses on enhancing sustainability through smart technology that helps plan and book routes, control temperature, and more. They offer LCL and full container load shipments, temperature control, and more. Contact Continental Logistics today.
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