Keeping Your Chips Fresh, Whatever the Weather

David Rae

Us Brits love eating chips! Whether it’s tucking into a big bag on a cold Friday after work or munching away at the seaside on a hot day in summer.

Your food is going to taste great whatever the weather but there are so many challenges that changes in temperature present when it comes to storing and transporting food.

It takes a lot of care and attention to move delicate products across Europe. Potatoes, for instance, are usually transported at ambient temperatures on a tautliner lorry but that isn’t going to work when the weather gets cold or hot.


Changing of the seasons

You will have seen tautliners on the roads everywhere, they are often called “curtain siders” as the sides of the trailer are a PVC coated polyester fabric which can be pulled back like a curtain. That way you can load your cargo on the side with a forklift truck.

The drawback is that there is less protection when it comes to seasonal temperature which is why when things get hot or cold, we switch to temperature-controlled units or TCUs.

Recently we have moved potatoes from the UK to Hungary which means transporting through central Europe, with their snowy winters and amazing summers, as well as a big distance to cover.

We would normally try to keep cargo like this around the 7 to 8 degrees, so TCUs are used in the winter when it gets below -4 degrees or from May onwards into the summer.

Too hot and the load can spoil whilst on the container, but too cold, and the potatoes are allowed to freeze then their actual cell structure will change, and they turn black when they are cooked.


Freshness takes a lot of care

Making sure your potatoes are fresh and crunchy at all points in the supply chain is Account Manager Emphany-Rose McLaughlin working alongside our European Freight Specialist team.

Em oversees the process of arranging for TCU’s when the need arises and makes sure that the loads get there on time.

She also ensures that there are veterinary checks in place for the required phytosanitary checks before loading and at at the border when it first enters Europe. This is to make sure that the cargo arrives just as preserved as when it left the warehouse.

So, think of Em the next time you’re having chips, whatever the weather!

If you are transporting any cargo through the UK or Europe that will spoil without due care, then please contact Em or another one of our Account Managers.

Olivia Hegarty

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