Spring and summer are the peak shipping periods for fresh produce. This creates a high demand for shippers throughout the country, which has a ripple-effect on companies throughout the shipping industry. You don't have to be a grocer or restaurant to get impacted by the produce season. In fact, some of the most affected sectors of the market are ones that have nothing to do with food. Let's take a look at how the produce season affects the shipping industry and what you can do to adjust accordingly.
Trucks are not as easy to access during produce season because most of them are doing runs for farmers, grocery stores, and food manufacturers. If you need a shipment completed on the fly, you may have a harder time finding a trucker who is able to work with your time constraints. If possible, try to plan ahead for last-minute loads so you can make sure you're going to have a truck available when you need it. Otherwise, you may find yourself missing deadlines because there simply aren't enough people around for fast responses.
With produce taking up more space on the trucks, there is less room for your products to go. This limits the carrying capacity for trucks, which means you may not be able to ship as much as you normally do. Luckily, the recent surge in the ecommerce market has created a demand for small, low-quantity shipments in America as companies try to fill orders for their customers. If this is the bulk of your shipments, you should still be able to find room to send your products out during this time of year.
Produce is often considered a top priority shipment because food can spoil. This may delay shipments of non-perishable items because the produce has to get to its destination first. You may want to account for this when quoting shipping times to your customers as a way to preserve your satisfaction levels. At the very least, you can put a disclaimer in your shipping policy that says timeframes may be adjusted during certain months due to increased transportation demands. The more transparent you are with your customers, the better off you will be.
Despite all of the hassles that come with shipping during produce season, third party logistics companies like Overflo are able to get your products where they need to be on time. Our 3PL has access to a network of thousands of shippers nationwide, and many of them work specifically with non-produce suppliers. Our experts prepare for the produce season well in advance, so we have already made the adjustments necessary to keep operations running smoothly. In other words, we have professional drivers on-hand to help you out at a moment's notice, so you don't have to worry about any of the aftermath of spring and summer produce shipping. Trust us to get the job done right, and you won't even notice a difference in your shipping times.
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