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The Story of the Strawberry: Delicate Temperature-controlled Cargo

July 11, 2023

Temperature’s Crucial Role in Shipping Nature’s Summertime Jewel

In temperature-controlled freight, where every detail matters, strawberries take the stage as delicate cargo, requiring meticulous attention to ensure their freshness and quality throughout the shipping process. In most cases, freight requiring temperature-controlled shipping needs an immediate turnaround to be loaded and on the way to its destination. Anytime temperature-sensitive freight has to sit and wait for delivery, the product could be spoiled, and the shipper could lose money.

Strawberries are a perfect example of the precise conditions needed to ensure satisfactory cargo delivery – and the delicious treat we all enjoy when those instructions are followed. As it turns out, there’s much more going on besides simply picking them off the vine and loading them into trucks. Let’s take a deeper look into the story of the strawberry.

High angle of anonymous man in gloves and apron demonstrating plastic box with ripe strawberries while working in garden during harvest

From Harvest to Temperature-controlled Shipping

As winter fades away, strawberries take center stage as the first fruit to ripen. Within the vast tapestry of strawberry production in the United States, three states emerge as true champions—California, Florida, and North Carolina. These fruitful regions have become veritable havens for strawberries, contributing significantly to the nation’s supply and taste buds. During the peak of California’s strawberry harvest, a staggering ten million baskets of strawberries embark on a journey daily.

Strawberries, requiring temperature-controlled shipping, sit in baskets on wooden table

The strawberries must swiftly find relief in cooler temperatures upon harvest. From the moment they are plucked from the vine, the berries race against time, their temperature rising rapidly when exposed to the scorching heat and sun. They should ideally find a chilled environment within an hour of harvest, where their flats may be thoughtfully arranged to expedite temperature reduction.

Field of organic strawberries growing on the vine

The shipper often lists the specific temperature the strawberries need to remain during transit. To ensure the strawberries’ freshness, it is imperative to maintain an optimal storage temperature of 32°F. Even a slight drop to 30.6°F risks freezing these delicate treasures. If this temperature setting is altered up or down at all, the strawberries could be damaged and may be deemed unacceptable upon delivery, meaning both losses of money and time.

Reefer container technician is using tablet for monitoring temperature-controlled cold shipments

Strawberry Fun Facts

Since ancient times, strawberries have served as more than just a delectable treat. Ancient Romans utilized these berries to combat ailments ranging from depression to fever and sore throats, recognizing their innate healing properties.

Acting as a nutritional powerhouse, strawberries are a testament to nature’s ingenuity, embodying low-calorie attributes while boasting high levels of vitamin C, fiber, folic acid, and potassium. In fact, strawberries even contain more vitamin C than oranges.

Beautiful little smiling girl eating strawberries in garden

Within the United States, a resounding demand exists for organic strawberries, with the placement of these berries among the top choices for health-conscious households. In 2019 alone, consumers spent an impressive USD 334 million on organic strawberries, reflecting a remarkable 10.8% increase from the previous year.

We enjoy our strawberries the most served at room temperature when they are the sweetest (compared to cold berries). We also recommend not washing your strawberries until you’re ready to eat them, as it speeds up the spoiling process.

family, happy mother, father and two daughters having picnic on summer beach and eating strawberries

Many people do not realize the importance of the accuracy of temperatures in the trucks from the very moment the fruit is loaded to the very moment it is delivered.
But we do! Our team understands temperature-sensitive products, as does our massive network of carriers. We work hard to ensure the safe transport of refrigerated freight.
At Simple Logistics, we book over 200 full truckloads of temperature-sensitive produce per week! Our customers know they can count on us to carry their strawberries at the precise temperature needed for the freshest possible delivery. When you need temperature-controlled freight moved, we MAKE IT SIMPLE.

Call us at 630-385-7400!


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