Avoiding price fluctuations during produce season

Posted by Harriet Mills on Apr 15, 2016 11:30:58 AM

For produce suppliers, the change in season brings a bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables to market. However, it also brings a big change in shipping rates and availability. When you have perishable goods, there's no time to waste. You need to ship those items to distributors safely so they can be sold before profits spoil — literally.

iStock-510172148.jpgApril marks the start of produce season, which means it's already in full swing. At Choptank Transport we work with thousands of suppliers across the country to move precious produce freight to final destinations so it can be used and enjoyed in homes, restaurants and everything in between.

  Some shippers come to us due to sticker shock after pursuing other channels. Because there is an abundance of produce needing to be shipped this time of year (and it will be like that until about August when shipments slow), empty trucks fill up fast and capacity shrinks, which means rates go up. Supply and demand bring spikes in pricing that can be tough to swallow.

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Truck routes from the south and southwest tend to be busiest, particularly at the start of produce season. Because these locations warm faster than the rest of the country, produce is ready sooner. Later in the season, expect to see lanes throughout the U.S. busy due to regional crops maturing for harvest.

In order to get the best rates, maintain open communication with your freight provider. Make contact as soon as possible to express your needs and timeline. Customer service is one of our core values at Choptank, so we strive to work closely with clients to get the best available pricing even when demand is high.

To get the best deals for produce suppliers, sometimes we need to look beyond the obvious. As a 3PL provider we have access to over 13,000 carriers and because we have implemented the latest transportation technologies to optimize efficiencies, we can offer the best available pricing. In addition to truckload and reefer shipment options, produce shippers can also save when they require refrigerated LTL by providing advanced notice on shipment schedules and requirements.

Refrigerated LTL

Refrigerated less-than-truckload freight is great when you have smaller amounts of produce (less than 40,000 pounds) to ship and it requires temperature control. Because your shipment is lumped with other shipments to fill a truck, refrigerated LTL can offer impressive cost savings. Refrigerated LTL runs out of Choptank's reefer LTL division, which is managed by seasoned logistics specialists who are ready to help you arrange the movement of your precious cargo. Choptank’s pick-up zones span the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast and delivery is nationwide.

To learn more about produce-shipping options including refrigerated LTL, contact us today.

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