Ice cream and related products face the risk of melting when improperly packaged and shipped, which can result in waste and unhappy customers.
If you want to ship ice cream products without any chance of melting, the following are some tips to help you keep these products in good shape throughout the entire supply chain.
Understand Ice Cream’s Melting Temperature
Typically, ice cream melts at around 31° Fahrenheit (-3° Celsius). While water has a freezing point of around 32° F, ice cream’s salt content lowers its melting point. Understanding this can help determine how cold your products should remain throughout the shipping process and the packaging you require.
You can also make sure your ice cream products stay intact by choosing the right time to ship. Look at weather forecasts and see what the temperature will be like throughout a particular shipping period, which will help you determine what steps to take prior to shipment.
Seasonally speaking, warmer months will generally require more coolant. Make sure you have done proper testing in a variety of temperature conditions before you start shipping directly to the consumer.
Use Materials Such as Dry Ice and Gel Packs to Sufficiently Freeze Ice Cream
In addition to proper packaging, you should use packing materials like dry ice and gel packs to keep ice cream consistently cold. Frozen gel packs contain a cooling gel that can stay cool for long periods, and styrofoam inserts offer additional insulation.
Dry ice is another popular option to use. Dry ice lasts much longer than traditional ice, and it completely evaporates once used, leaving no mess behind or need to dispose of waste products. It’s also much lighter than regular ice, which helps further reduce shipping costs. Although dry ice can be hazardous to handle, the right equipment and training can make sure it’s safely incorporated into shipments.
You can also use a combination of dry ice and gel packs, with dry ice sitting atop gel packs to help reinforce each material’s effects.
Choose a Reliable Carrier with Experience Handling Similar Products
Another way to make sure your ice cream products remain safe and secure during shipping is to select the right third-party logistics (3PL) provider. A good 3PL will have plenty of experience shipping ice cream or other similar frozen products that require temperature-controlled delivery. Make sure the 3PL you choose has a history of working with clients in your industry or others with similar requirements. They’ll be able to help determine how best to get your products where they need to go.
Once you’ve found a few viable logistics partners, you can narrow down your list by comparing and contrasting them.
Make Sure Delivery Is Efficient
One of the best ways to make sure ice cream products won’t melt is to offer quick delivery to customers. Oftentimes, companies deliver these products overnight or through same-day shipping. The faster the shipment, the less likely it will be for refrigerants to fail and for products to degrade in quality.
As a general rule of thumb, when shipping ice cream and other similar products, it’s best to keep a maximum transit time of 30 hours to maintain flavor and freshness. If shipments take longer than this to complete, the chances of delivering it to your customers frozen is more likely to decrease.
Consistently Monitor Shipments
You must be able to track your ice cream products while shipping to further ensure deliveries are timely. A reliable carrier will offer an equally dependable tracking service to help monitor all shipments until they arrive at their final destinations. With recent developments in tracking technologies, product tracking for ice cream is easier than ever before. In addition to monitoring delivery, you can keep track of container conditions, including shock and temperature.
Set Up Shipping for Ice Cream Products with the Help of Gray Growth Logistics
By taking the right steps, you can ensure your ice cream products remain in great condition throughout the shipping process. If you need some assistance with preparing your business to ship these and other perishable products, the experts at Gray Growth Logistics can help. Contact us today to consult with us and discover what we can do for your business!