Refrigerated Parcel Shipping Done Right5 min read


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All about refrigerated parcel shipping and how it’s done

Let’s say it’s Valentine’s day. So you wish to send some chocolates and tulips to your sweetheart, no matter how many miles separate you. Or maybe you’re a major food supplier of a restaurant chain and your goods need to be there just in time for the dinner event. Alternatively, you are part of the research lab, ready to ship fragile samples to another branch. Whichever of those options best describes your shipping needs, standard logistics services may travel quite different roads with them.

The reason for it is that your parcel or freight happens to be temperature-sensitive and refrigerated, ambient or heated transport is called for. So, do you want those truffles to melt no sooner than on your girlfriend’s lips? Should your delicacies arrive mouth-watering rather than stomach-churning? Must the biologics as well as your facility’s reputation not be damaged? Then read on and find out more about refrigerated parcel shipping.

Please remember that it is not possible to ship goods that need temperature-controlled transportation through Eurosender at the moment. It means that you ship refrigerated items on your sole responsibility and must, therefore, properly package the parcel.

What Items Require Refrigerated Parcel Shipping?

First and foremost, let’s determine if your goods are on the list of temperature-sensitive products at all. It comprises:

  • pharmaceuticals (vaccines, APIs)
  • healthcare products (supplements, vitamins)
  • biologicals (retroviruses, stem cells)
  • lab samples (tissues, bodily fluids)
  • temperature-sensitive reagents (chemicals)
  • cosmetics (makeup, lotions)
  • perishable foods & ingredients (dairy, meat, frozen products, hops, seafood etc.)
  • wine, liquor and other kinds of alcohol
  • plants & flowers
  • some technology products
  • any other items whose quality degrades in unsuitable climate conditions

What Do You Need to Consider Before Booking Refrigerated Parcel Shipping?

Transportation CapacityRequired temperature conditionsEstimated delivery timeProper packaging & handlingTemperature controlled transportation legislation
As most of the parcels, temperature-sensitive goods can be shipped by road (LTL, FTL, PTL), rail, sea or air. However, note that temperature-controlled transport usually has less capacity, as insulation in the container walls takes extra space, and temperature control equipment adds to the overall weight. So, keep in mind that the payload for your shipment may be restricted.
It’s imperative to be well-informed yourself and let the carrier know about the temperature guidelines for your goods in advance if you want them to be delivered unaffected. Give the courier company all specific details like acceptable temperature range, whether it’s plus or minus, Fahrenheit or Celsius.
Quick delivery time is crucial for refrigerated parcel shipping, especially considering life-critical medications and biologics when stakes are simply too high. Avoid sending such parcels on holidays as well as weekends and opt for shipping early in the week. You can learn more about preventing failed and delayed deliveries on our blog.

To protect delicate products from extreme temperatures or humidity, make sure to provide for the best possible packaging fit when it comes to refrigerated parcel shipping. In most cases, you’ll need insulation (expanded polystyrene foam, rigid polyurethane foam or reflective films) as well as coolants (gel packs or dry ice). You should also pad the refrigerants with packing peanuts and bubble wrap.

Insulated foam containers are the right choice for flowers, food and frozen goods that should stay that way. Moreover, it is advisable to place absorbing materials such as pads, cellulose wadding or paper towels in the bottom of corrugated boxes containing frozen items or wet ice. While packing wares that need less cooling, insulated foam planks or thermal bubble wrap may suffice.

Packaging medical and chemical supplies is an entirely different ball game. You’ll have to acquire airtight, opaque, thermostat-controlled refrigerated containers and absorbents to eliminate the risk of leakage. Also, be sure to provide all the necessary documentation.

Last, but not least. Most of the goods that need temperature-controlled transportation classify as prohibited items and are subject to strict rules and regulations all over the world. Please be aware that consequences may be drastic if we’re talking about dangerous biological substances or hazardous materials.

Final Tips on Refrigerated Parcel Shipping

Temperature controlled logistics entails a considerable number of complexities and precautions, so it’s essential to be positive about your courier’s competence and expertise. The shipping company of your choice should boast long-term experience in temperature-controlled transportation and state-of-the-art equipment like temperature-controlled warehousing, appropriate shipping containers, cold chain transport, temperature monitoring systems etc. for keeping temperature-sensitive items intact.

Should you require some advice on this issue, or some questions still run through your head, our logistics experts will be more than happy to help you with that. Contact us now directly!

Last modified: August 13, 2019

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