Transportation: Rejection Due to Food Safety Concerns

Is something fishy going on? A load has just arrived and there is a strange odour when the doors are opened. What do you do now?

In the case of a foul odour, the load is likely compromised and for food safety concerns, it would be very difficult for a buyer to move the product to regular market channels. When a strange odour is present at the time the doors on a load are opened, you need to know what that odour is. The issue for a buyer is the perception that it could affect the product and create food safety concerns. Ask the following questions: what was on the truck prior to this shipment? Did the shipper or the driver notice any odours in the truck prior to loading? Is there any evidence that the truck was properly cleaned? We’re not talking about normal smells associated with produce maturing or decay but foul smells such as fish, meat or strong chemical smells. Immediately close the doors and call for a government inspection. If the inspection confirms an issue with foul odour, you may have valid reasons to reject the load.

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