If you want to transport food safely, timing is critical. If you work with a professional third-party logistics company, or 3PL, you need to think about the differences between shipping fresh vs frozen foods.

With the eCommerce world growing rapidly, many people are ordering food online, and you need to make sure the food gets delivered on time without ruining its quality. What are a few differences between fresh and frozen foods?

Fresh and Frozen Foods: Differences in Shelf Life

First, fresh and frozen foods have significant differences in their shelf-life. Fresh foods begin perishing the moment after they are processed. They continue to perish at different rates during the packing and transportation process, depending on the conditions.

In contrast, frozen foods often have 2-year expiration dates, as long as they remain frozen. That said, they require very strict temperature control to remain frozen. While fresh foods are often kept cold with gel packs, frozen foods generally require dry ice and/or gel packs as well. In either case, you’ll need to get the orders to customers within 2 days to ensure fresh food are still fresh and frozen foods are still frozen upon delivery.

The Growing Role of Technology in eCommerce

Technology plays a critical role in ensuring fresh and frozen food arrives at their final destination intact. Technology collects information on temperature, time, and potential disruptions during transit. Then, this data can be used to optimize the process.

This data can help the company make changes to the packaging, insulation and amount of gel packs or dry ice used to rectify the situation. This is helpful for making sure frozen goods don’t thaw and that fresh foods are still cold when they reach the client.

As an eCommerce company, you need to use technology to your advantage. You might partner with a 3PL that runs tests before transporting your goods to real customers, so you can use this information to perform quality control. As customer orders come in, you can then feel confident that your items will be received in the same shape as when they were shipped.

A Change in Consumer Demand

During the past few years, there has been a major shift in demand to the upside for ecommerce food delivery, and this has been further amplified due to the ongoing pandemic. Now, consumers are looking for frozen and fresh food delivery more than ever before. This presents a major opportunity for food & beverage brands with a perishable food product.

If you want to put your company in a position to be successful, you’ll need partner with a logistics company that can help you manage all aspects of the cold supply chain. Additionally, demand for these types of services has exceeded supply, so finding a service provider willing to take you on, may not be as easy as you think. This is especially true for startups since their order volume is unknown.


Work with an Experienced Logistics Specialist to Help with Frozen and Fresh Food eCommerce

There are lots of nuances companies need to understand regarding fresh and frozen food shipping. eCommerce companies need to work with a specialist that has extensive knowledge of these details. Partnering with the right logistics company can literally make or break your business. It is imperative to get this right from the beginning to maximize your chances of success. Gray Growth can help create a logistics program customized to your exact needs. We’ve helped brands both large and small launch and scale their perishable logistics programs. Contact us today!