Allfresch Logistics specialises in Fruit Freight Forwarding. We coordinate the shipment of hundreds of containers of fruit and vegetables to customers each week for some of the largest fresh produce wholesalers, import/export companies and retailers. As a result, our Logistics Management team understands first-hand how sensitive shipping perishable goods can be.

To ensure your goods reach their destination fresh and in perfect shape we have put together this article, which highlights 5 main considerations you should make when shipping perishable goods.

It is important to mention that when shipping overseas there are a great many elements to consider including laws, paperwork, fees, tariffs, restrictions, customs, insurance and more.

We advise that you gain a deeper understanding of the destination countries export laws before shipping. This guide serves as a basic introduction and it is recommend that you seek guidance from a reputable agent to assist in the process of shipping perishable goods.

What Are Perishable Goods?

Perishable foods are foods that need to be refrigerated or frozen to slow or halt bacteria growth. That includes fruits, vegetables, fresh meat, foods purchased from chill cabinets, and freshly cooked food stored to be used later. Quora

1. Laws and Regulations

Each country has their own set of customs laws, regulations and fees for shipping perishable goods and it is paramount that you are aware of them.

Pay particularly attention to quarantine, cargo laws and regulations. If you are uninformed you could have a nasty surprise if your cargo arrives, doesn’t meet requirements and must be destroyed.

Your chosen shipping agent should assist with processing of fees, facility registration processes, Prior Notices, admissibility information etc.

Gov.UK offers more detailed guidance on international trade.

2. Shipping Time

Gain a clear understanding of the shipping timeline right the way through the supply chain. Consider the impact of the time it will take for your supplier to pack the goods, shipping time and delivery to the goods destination. These factors will impact the freshness of your goods upon arrival.

3. Packing & Containers

Appropriate and sturdy packaging is recommended to minimise damage such as bruising to fruit during transit.

It’s also worth considering if your perishable goods will also need specialised packaging such as dry ice* or frozen gel to keep it cool upon arrival.

*A note about dry ice. It’s important to know that dry ice is considered a dangerous good/hazardous material, and this requires special handling.

For perishable goods refrigerated containers are recommended and are typically available in shipping container sizes (20′, 40′, etc.), and are refrigerated specifically for temperature-controlled shipping.

4. Paperwork & Labels

When shipping overseas it is paramount that you have all your paperwork in order e.g. Bill of Lading or Sea Waybill, letters of credit, certifications etc. to pass customs requirements and minimise any issues at the port.

Likewise ensuring your goods are clearly labelled with clear information about the contents i.e. Food Contents, Keep Frozen/Cool, Handle with Care etc. is also important and will help speed up processing at the port.

5. Using the Right Shipping Routes

Consider the shipping routes that your freight will need to follow. Research the shortest and most efficient option to avoid your cargo from perishing.

Your chosen shipping company will be able to advise you of the best options but its recommended that you inform yourself of journey times, waiting periods at the ports etc.

Remember, preparation is key to avoiding delays and wastage! For further guidance on Fruit Freight Forwarding contact Allfresch Logistics. With over 25 years’ experience in the logistics industry we can help take the headache out of shipping.

Learn more about Choosing a Logistics company to assist you in the shipping of perishable goods overseas.

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