As the holidays draw closer, you may be planning to send food items to friends, family or business partners. If any of these packages will include perishable food, you may be unsure about how to ship these items so that they arrive safely and quickly. Here are some answers to common questions received by a cold storage shipping company in Minnesota.
What are the basic details I need to know about packing my shipment?
The package must be kept below 40 degrees Fahrenheit when shipping refrigerated or frozen foods. You’ll need:
- Airtight containers (containers such as zip-top bags, Tupperware or vacuum sealed bags typically work well)
- Foam cooler
- Packing Styrofoam (or “peanuts”)
- Dry ice
- Layer of cardboard
- Packing tape
- Brown paper
- Permanent marker
How do I package my shipment?
- Place the perishable food items in airtight containers to prevent spilling.
- Place these containers in an insulated foam cooler.
- Don gloves, and if you are shipping refrigerated items, add gel freezer ice packs. If your items are frozen, add a sealed package of dry ice over top of the perishable food items inside the coolers. Be careful that the dry ice does not come into direct contact with the food.
- Add a layer of cardboard to the top, and then close the cooler lid.
- Put the full cooler inside a sturdy cardboard box. Use packing Styrofoam in any open spaces.
- Use packing tape to seal the box, and then add an additional layer of protection, such as brown paper.
- Use a permanent marker to write these messages on the box: “perishables” and “contains dry ice.”
- When you have your box securely packed and labeled, bring it to a shipping supplier to be sent overnight.
What is the difference between gel freezer ice packs and dry ice?
Gel ice packs remain colder longer, and dry ice will help your package maintain a colder temperature. While gel packs become wet as they melt, dry ice stays dry.
If you’re using dry ice, add 5 to 10 lbs. for each full day the items will be in the mail. Use one pound of gel packs per cubic foot of your shipment per each full day.
When should you mail your shipment?
Ship your package of perishable foods early in the week, as waiting until Thursday or Friday means that there is a higher chance your refrigerated or frozen food items will be closed up in a warehouse over the weekend, causing them to spoil. Three days is generally the longest that perishable items will remain safe while being shipped. Be sure to let your recipient know the estimated delivery date for the package.
Do you have questions for a cold storage shipping company in Minnesota? K-Way Express, Inc. is the premier provider of transportation services to Minnesota and beyond, offering pickup and delivery services in 48 states. We are fully licensed and work with more than 700 carriers. Our transportation options include dry vans, refrigerated trailers, flat beds and specialized equipment to ensure that your materials or products arrive at their destination safely and on time. We confidently offer excellent service, fair pricing and the utmost customer satisfaction. If you’d like a quote or have questions about our services, call us today!