Food and Medical Shipping

freight shipping medical supplies

freight shipping food


Shipping food and other perishables can seem like a difficult endeavor, and often requires specialized services to transport deliveries while maintaining the quality of the product. Secure the most competitive refrigerated freight rates on your next load. FreightCenter can help you find a dedicated truck for reefer loads and temperature-controlled shipments.

freight shipping medical supplies


Medical supplies can include any and all medical equipment and pharmaceuticals. When you are shipping medical supplies you need to provide specific information. The shipper needs this information to best determine how to classify your load. Some medical supplies are not allowed to be shipped via parcel services, or may have special handling requirements. For example, temperature control may be necessary or special handling might be required.

Although there are several types of freight trucks out there, you want to stick to a select few. Any truck that does not have an enclosed trailer will not offer your freight sufficient protection. Food and beverages are sensitive items and need to be treated as such through the usage of additional services to ensure they arrive fresh to their destination.

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LTL or TL?

Shipping items of this nature will require attentive care and additional specialized services to maintain the integrity of the items.

Depending on what type of medical freight you are shipping, certain factors should be kept in mind as they come into play. It’s likely that what you’re shipping will be expensive. It’s best not to cut corners with items of this value. Instead, do everything by the book and rest assured you’ll be in good hands.

freight shipping full truckload

Less-than-truckload (LTL)

Refers to shipping an item that is relatively small and will not take up the entirety of the trailer. You pay for the amount of space you take up, not the entire truck.

freight shipping full truckload

Truckload (TL)

If you are shipping a large enough load, you may need an entire truck. This option requires a lot of freight to make it a more economical choice than LTL.

How to Package Food and Medical Supplies

You never know the journey that your freight will endure while it’s in transit. That’s why you should package your shipment thoroughly so that it’s prepared for any bump in the road, including snowstorms or rainstorms, that causes items in the trailer to shift.

freight shipping crate


If you’re shipping medical equipment that can fit in a crate with room to spare for packing peanuts, this is a good choice as it offers sturdy protection from other items in the freight truck.

freight shipping pallet


Often a good choice for food and beverages that are easy to stack. Make sure none of the material exceeds the dimensions of the pallet and you shrink wrap everything to the pallet to guarantee it’s not going anywhere.

freight shipping box


The cardboard box will probably break once you try to lift it if the items within are too heavy. Not the most reliable option for a shipment of this nature.

freight shipping blanket wrap


If your item is too big to be palletized or crated, the next best thing you can do is cover it with a tarp and consider shipping by TL to ensure nothing else in the truck can harm your item.

Tips for measuring properly

The most essential step in the entire shipping process if you want to avoid any re-bill charges. If you miscalculate the weight or dimensions for your shipment, it can result in hefty monetary consequences.

  • If your item is oddly shaped, be sure to measure at the widest points of the item
  • Some carriers go by density weight, consult with a freight agent to find out if that is the case with the carrier you chose
  • Include all packaging materials in your final measurement
Shipping irregular objects by parcel

Freight Truck Options

Medical equipment can sometimes unknowingly contain hazardous materials that should be disclosed to your freight agent when shipping. It’s always best to mention any potential hazardous materials as you are putting the trucker and drivers on the road in danger if something were to happen. If you’re ever unsure, it’s always best to consult with an agent.

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freight shipping truckload refrigerated trailer

Refrigerated Van

This is for those temperature sensitive shipments. The trailer of a truck can get hot and with no circulation, it’s easy for things to go stale or sour very quickly. By opting for a refrigerated truck, you’re keeping your items at a temperature that will sustain the freshness of your freight for the duration of the trip. It might cost a little extra, but it’ll be worth every penny. It’s up to your discretion to determine if this is necessary for your shipment or not.

freight shipping truckload dry van trailer

Dry Van

This is the typical truck you think of when you think “freight truck”. It’s a truck with a long, covered trailer. A dry van can offer your food, beverages and medical equipment protection from any severe weather outside, though it does not offer temperature control. If you deem it unnecessary to pay extra for a climate controlled truck, this will be your best option.


Lift Gate

It’s likely that you won’t be able to lift a heavy piece of medical equipment with your bare hands and hoist it onto the trailer of a freight truck. That’s where a lift gate comes in. We’d almost ask you to consider this a mandatory additional feature, even though it’s technically optional. If a truck driver determines its necessary for a lift gate to be used to complete a pick up or delivery, they will use it and you will later get re-billed for not only the usage of the lift gate but for also for an additional fee. It’s better to just commit to using a lift gate to avoid any outstanding re-bills.

White Glove Service

This is the royal treatment. A group of workers come in to package your freight up for maximum protection, load it onto the truck, and even unload it and un-package it at the destination location. If you’re shipping a highly fragile item that you don’t want to fuss with, be sure to include this service and save yourself the headache of having to worry.

Guaranteed Delivery

Does this produce or medical equipment need to get to its destination by a certain date? You will need to opt in for this additional service. Your freight shipment dates and transit times will never come with a guarantee, due to how unpredictable the world of freight is. Something small could through off track the drivers entire schedule for the rest of the day. The only time we can guarantee dates and times is if you book with guaranteed delivery.


No matter what, a carrier will always charge you extra when you ship to or from a residential location. Even if it’s a business you’re running out of your residence. We always encourage shippers to drop off and pick up their freight from a terminal or commercial location when possible, as it will save you money in the end.

Limited Access

This is different from residential in the sense that even a commercial location could be considered limited access. If the location is in a rural area or in a tight urban area that a freight truck has trouble driving in, there will be a surcharge for this limited access location.

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