|Want to mail a tasty treat to your loved one this holiday?|
Food is a great holiday gift and can be sent safely in the mail, if carefully chosen, packaged well and sent in a timely manner.
Pound cakes, cookies high in sugar and shortening, brownies, shortbread, and nut bars are a few examples of foods that ship well.
Coffees, teas, cereals, and nuts are great choices of foods to ship.
Avoid shipping foods with perishable fillings or foods that are moist, as these will spoil quickly.
Delicate cakes and cookies will crumble easily in the mail.
Mailing highly perishable food is not recommended unless special precautions are taken to ensure that the food stays out of the temperature danger zone (40°F-140°F) during the entire shipping process.
This means keeping the food below 40°F during shipping and letting the recipient know when to expect the package and what to do with it upon arrival.
Flat cookies can be wrapped in pairs (back to back) with a layer of waxed paper between them and then wrapped in foil or plastic wrap.
Other types of cookies should be wrapped individually with plastic wrap or foil.
Pad the bottom of the container with crumpled wax paper and place the heavier cookies on the bottom. Make sure the lid on the container fits
Begin by filling the box with a layer of packing material. Use material such as newspaper, bubble wrap, or foam pieces.
Place the gift in the center of the box.
Fill around the gift with more packing material until the box is full and there is no air space left.
Do not use packing material that will attract pests such as popped corn or puffed cereal.
It is acceptable to mail jars and bottles within the United States if they have screw tops or locking-lid devices.
Absorbent packaging materials such as newspapers, packing paper, or paper towels should be used around the jars in case of leaks or breakage.
This includes foods such as dried foods, jerky, condiments, low-moisture breads and cakes, cookies, and candies.
Do not send foods that require refrigeration. Perishable foods can become unsafe during shipping because of long distances and delivery times. Also, the recipient may not have access to refrigeration. It is best to send shelf-stable items only. Send all packages directly to the serviceman at the address given by the military postal service.
If the product is above 40°F, throw it out.
There is no way of knowing how long it has been in the temperature danger zone and it may be unsafe. If the food is at a proper temperature, refrigerate or freeze it immediately.
Also, check the packaging for any tears, holes, signs of pest infestation, or stains that might indicate something dripped on it. Check all foods for any signs of spoilage. Foods that have mold or other signs of spoilage should be discarded.
When ordering food from one of these companies make sure that it is reputable.
Ask about their shipping policies, how they keep perishable foods out of the danger zone, and if they guarantee the safety and quality of the delivered product. The company should always ship perishable foods by overnight delivery and use frozen gel-packs or dry ice to keep the product cold.