Shipping frozen food freight can be quite challenging and very expensive. This is due to the fact that the freight needs to be kept below freezing for every step of the supply chain. While in storage, waiting to be picked up, in transit, and after it is delivered. Just like normal food and beverage shipping, a reefer trailer is used to transport the freight. In all the stages of the supply chain, the freight must be kept frozen or it may easily spoil.
Because of these additional challenges and costs, many shippers decide to partner with a transportation provider. Someone who can handle all these hassles for them. However, even by partnering with someone, there are still ways that the shipper can ensure that the price remains low. This post will go over four of them.
1. Keep your Planned Appointment Times
As mentioned before, frozen food freight must be kept frozen at every step of the supply chain. This includes while it is waiting to be picked up and dropped off. Because of this, it is important to keep appointments with drivers. Otherwise, the money is being spent to keep the product frozen in a trailer while it’s outside of your warehouse. Additionally, there’s the side benefit of keeping the driver happy who will then be more willing to work with you.
2. Ship Consistent Levels of Frozen Food Freight
When you partner with a transportation provider it is always beneficial to offer a consistent level of freight. This rule also applies when shipping frozen food freight. By offering a consistent amount of freight, your transportation partner knows what to expect and, more importantly, plan for. It takes time to find trusted carriers so always give a heads up if the volume is going to change. This allows time for adequate carriers to be found.
3. Increase your Lead Times
The lead time is the amount of time between notifying your transportation partner that you need freight shipped and the time that the freight needs to be shipped. By increasing this difference you are giving them more time to negotiate freight rates, find efficiencies, and seek out more trusted carriers. This is especially important in shipping frozen food freight because it is so delicate. It is important that the transportation provider find a carrier that can handle it, and then negotiate on a rate that works for everyone involved in the process.
4. Optimize your Lanes for Frozen Food Freight
This final step should be handled by the transportation provider that you partner with but it is good to know for yourself as well. Due to the reefer unit running at all times, the price of gas adds up quickly when shipping frozen food freight. This means that it is important to get to the destination as quickly as possible by taking the best route available. Also, if possible, always aim to have the freight delivered all in one run. This can be a little tricky due to the Hours of Service (HOS) rule which states that drivers can only drive 11 hours straight before having to take a 10-hour break.
By reviewing these 4 factors, hopefully, you have a better understanding of shipping frozen food freight at a fair price. At Becker Logistics we always aim to offer the best prices and services for our customers. We have a wide selection of trusted carriers that we know can handle frozen food freight. If you would like to find out more then you can reach out or request a quote.