Produce season in the United States is in full swing. Beginning in February, fresh flowers and ornamentals make their way into the ports of Miami and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and then spread north and west across the domestic United States. The floral demand soon transitions to berries, cherries and citrus, and then follows seasonality accordingly. As the end of spring approaches, we prepare for Mother’s Day, where we once again flock to the store to buy flowers and chocolates. Our Werner Logistics teams follow and monitor the supply chain and consumer buying patterns to stay abreast of seasonal demand for cold-chain management.
Another important facet of floral and cold chain management is the understanding that we can only ultimately control two things in the entire lifecycle of a load: how we communicate and carrier selection. Regarding communication, if a delay occurs, logistics providers must be the party facilitating the conversation with the client. When a client trusts a 3PL with their temperature-controlled loads (and all loads), it is our responsibility to ensure constant communication.
Our clients also rely on us to be their industry experts. Our team is well-versed in transportation topics including expertise in:
- Commodity-specific knowledge, including ideal temperatures
- Shippers and receivers
- Lanes and O/D pairs
- Weather patterns
- Client-specific knowledge
- Load-to-truck ratios at both origin and destination
- Claims mitigation and response.
- Staffing shortages
- Cost savings strategies
- Nationwide capacity availability
- Strong carrier partners in key areas
Aside from being industry experts via a constant flow of communication, the other factor we can control is our carrier selection. Who we place behind the wheel of a complex, the temperature-controlled load is critically important, which is why the Werner Logistics Teams consider the following criteria every time we book a third-party carrier.
- Thorough research into the Carrier’s MC
- Qualification of the carrier and driver(s)
- All floral and cold-chain management loads MUST track and adhere to check-call requirements
- Communication standards must be met
- Qualification of the trailer
The next time you are buying your favorite flower, fresh produce, or gift consider the lengthy journey from the field/tree to you, and all the logistics specialists working hard to make it happen. For more information on cold-chain management and solutions, please visit werner.com or reedtms.com today.