The Importance of Chilled Packaging for Fresh Products

The products we eat daily go through a very complex supply chain to get into the stores and then on our plates. This supply chain begins with the farmers and other manufacturers to packaging and transportation companies, then to stores and finally with us, the consumers. The length of supply chain is very long if you don’t shop locally, and despite its length, the products need to be fresh and healthy.

Select products that last longer

If you want to get into this business, the first step is to examine the fruits and vegetables to determine which ones are durable enough to be shipped. Products that look perfect, free of bruising, damage, and underripe are then selected for transport.

Choose the best packaging option

Transportation companies need to select the proper type of packaging for the shipment. When selecting the type of packaging transporters must look for protection against temperature changes. Temperature-sensitive products such as seafood require chilled packaging solutions, while fruits and vegetables can be transported in wooden or plastic crates and packets.

Pallet loading and product shipping

Once the product has been packaged, it is ready to be loaded and shipped. Transporters must be aware of what they are sending, as some fruits can’t be transported together. After they are harvested all fruits release a harmless gas called ethylene, and each fruit releases this gas in different quantities. Certain fruits such as tomatoes and peppers are affected by this gas and tend to spoil faster. That’s why they need to be kept separate from fruits that release large quantities of ethylene.

The three main transportation options for perishable products are road, sea, and rail. Road transportation for perishable products is made using vans and trailers equipped with cooling systems to keep the products fresh and healthy. Chilled packaging is used to make sure that the integrity of the product is maintained. Rail transportation is used often for goods that need to be in transit anywhere from 2-3 days. The cheapest and slowest way of shipping products is sea transportation. However, this is used for food and products that last longer and don’t spoil that fast.

Challenges when transporting time-sensitive products

Even though transporting goods seems simple, there are a lot of things that can go wrong. Every year there’s a huge amount of food that gets spoiled during the transportation process and for this reason transportation companies are looking for solutions to avoid this from happening. So, nothing is simple when it comes to transporting perishable products. The logistic process when transporting fresh goods and time-sensitive food is complex and challenging, so, monitoring each step can be the key to success.