Dry Goods Shipping: All You Need to Know

Dry Goods Shipping: All You Need to Know

The shipment of dry goods is one of the primary focuses of freight shipping across the U.S. Each day, dry goods shipping companies ship goods to and from retail stores, grocery stores, and hardware stores with ease, relying on trusted trucks to carry out the process.

With so many different carrier options for the shipment of goods, narrowing down the right carrier for your company can feel daunting. However, different carriers will specialize in particular areas and routes, as well as with specific cargo types. With this in mind, by finding the right dry goods transportation carriers for your needs, you can not only safely deliver your goods, but find a more affordable rate, too.

Sound complicated? It doesn't have to be. Cowtown Express can handle the entire dry shipping process for you. Whether you need LTL freight or a full truckload of goods delivered, we are equipped to handle the shipping of your dry goods shipping for you. Curious how it’s done? Here’s what you need to know.

Benefits of Dry Goods Trucking

There are a lot of perks to relying on transportation carriers that haul dry goods for your next shipment. If you’re not convinced, let’s break down how we can help.

  • Help protect goods from theft: When it comes to dry van shipping, freight claims tend to be much lower when it comes to reports to insurance firms. This is because, when relying on a dry truck, you can rest assured that it remains locked during transit. This does a great deal to reduce theft. If you book a flatbed truck and your shipment is exposed, it’s much more susceptible to this risk, but this isn't a problem with a dry van.
  • Protects goods from weather impacts: Since a dry van is closed, your goods are shielded from the elements. From rain and wind to snow and hail, the way we pack food in a dry van keeps it safe from all unexpected effects of mother nature. This is particularly important when transporting across long distances.
  • Meet unique needs: With tons of experience transporting dry goods, dry goods companies can haul shipments of incredibly heavyweights and sizes. Carrying as much as 45,000 pounds, we can easily meet the needs of your shipment, transporting everything from textiles and clothing to food and building products with ease.
Dry truck

Vehicles That Can Be Used for the Dry Goods Transportation

As demand for different goods and products mounts, the need for dry goods only continues to increase. Every single day, thousands of grocery trucking companies are traveling across the states to deliver bulks of goods of all weights and sizes.

Depending on what you’re shipping and the quantity involved, there are an array of vehicle options dry goods companies offer. Here’s what’s at your disposal:

  • Small Vehicles: Lightweight trucks are ideal for transporting goods that are going short or local distances. These are not built to handle long-distance trips and are not built to withstand various circumstances that can arise during long trips on the road. Typically, we turn to small and lightweight vehicles for goods with minimal packaging going from one retail location to the next.
  • Heavy Trucks: With improved structural stability, heavy trucks are great vehicles to transport an array of dry goods. Typically, these trucks have built-in elements to protect the goods they are carrying, including temperature control. This will help maintain the quality of your shipment so it arrives in good condition.
  • Freight Transport: For shipment of goods across states, freight trains are usually the go-to. That being said, a freight truck can offer a bit more security, hauling multiple loads safely. Since trains have a less flexible route, large trucks can offer more innovative solutions.
  • Cargo Vessels: Last is cargo vessels. This refers to ships that carry all kinds of large cargo. This is ideal for more international trade and shipments, heavily relying on overseas transportation. Typically, this is reserved for non-perishable and non-consumable goods.

Packaging the Dry Goods Before the Trucking

One of the most important parts of dry truck shipments is following the proper steps to pack food and other goods to ensure safe arrival. Packaging goods carefully will help ensure they do not get damaged in the shipment process, keeping them safe and secure along the journey.

From boxes that are strapped down, to pallets, there are quite a few options at your disposal. To help prep your shipment of goods, we recommend:

  • Packaging dry goods to condense them and minimize the space used within a truck.
  • Minimize the weight and dimensions of your shipment as much as possible.
  • Utilize all necessary packaging materials, including bubble wrap, foam packaging, packing tape, and packing paper.
  • To secure packed boxes, wrap them in shrink wrap.
  • Be sure to put labels on all boxes and pallets to ensure they arrive in the correct place and can easily be identified.
  • For safer stacking, use standard-sized boxes.
  • To avoid going over the weight limit, do not overpack boxes.
  • When using pallets, stack goods on a few of the pallets as possible. This should only reach a height of 72”.
  • Do not let packages overhang on the pallet edge - this will lead to damage.
  • To prevent load shifts, utilize banding straps.
  • In ideal situations, try to ship to and from locations that have loading docks.
Dry goods companies

Best Practices in Dry Goods Storage

Another key element when looking at dry goods shipping companies is understanding how to store the goods you’re shipping, particularly when it comes to foods.

Storing these more perishable goods requires special attention to both temperature and humidity. The correct measurements for your goods will depend on what you’re shipping, but we typically recommend somewhere between 50 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit to maintain the best shelf life. Thankfully, the best grocery trucking companies will have temperature controls, but your warehouse will need clear thermometers and a plan for regulation, too.

Additionally, when it comes to maintaining the quality of goods, we also need to consider ventilation. In some places where high humidity is common, ventilation is essential to preventing mold and bacteria - something we certainly want to avoid with packed food. To help limit these effects, have proper insulation, dehumidifiers, and fans to lower humidity within your storage space, and keep an eye on the humidity in the warehouse throughout the day.

Last up is expiration dates. There’s no money to be made on expired goods, and while you may have some items in your warehouse for months, keep an eye on their shelf life throughout the time. It’s important to have a clear plan of how long you can keep them before they need to be donated or simply thrown away.


The transportation of dry goods is a common practice, and one many dry goods transportation carriers have mastered. By relying on the experts, you can ensure your goods get from point A to point B with ease, arriving in perfect condition and ready to sell. Whether you need a dry truck for non-perishable goods or a more temperature-controlled solution, Cowtown Express can meet the needs of all shipments of goods.

To explore your options when shipping dry goods, contact Cowtown Express today and receive a dry goods shipping quote to begin planning your next shipment.

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