When you’re looking for a refrigerated truck for your food service business, pay attention to certain details. For instance, be certain that the trailer is well insulated, and that the compressor and refrigeration equipment are rated to freeze or chill a space slightly larger than the interior of the food cargo area. You want to be sure the equipment isn’t too taxed to do the job on an extremely hot day.
For long trailers, you’ll need ductwork so that chilling or freezing takes place the length of the trailer.
Some other details to think about:
- Adding insulation to keep your cargo cold enough can be problematic. While you can’t afford to let temperatures fall to the point where your cargo stands a chance of being refused, adding insulation will take away from cargo space. You may have to make some alterations in the food compartment.
- You will be choosing between an overhead door or swinging doors.
Roll-up doors are a good choice when you have to open the door frequently, going from stop to stop. But these doors leak energy like wild, and you may find products near the door are not as cold as they should be. This also means the refrigeration system has to work harder.
Insulated side-by-side doors will require more effort to open repeatedly, but they are more energy-efficient. One solution to the energy loss might be strip doors between the cargo and the doors, but these are subject to breaking as you load and unload.
- Transportation of food is governed by the Food Safety Modernization Act. FSMA requires, among other things that the trailer is sealed well enough to prevent insects and rodents from entering; the set-up in the cargo area must be easy to inspect for temperature and cleanliness; and no vents or ductwork should drip condensation on food. Also, interior surfaces should be made of materials that can be easily washed and disinfected, such as stainless steel.