Apples, just like any other fruit, can rot and get bruised during transit if they are improperly packed. If you are planning to ship fruits from your backyard apple tree to friends or loved ones elsewhere, here are some tips on how to properly pack and ship apples to ensure that they arrive in the best condition possible.
First, make sure that the destination of your package allows the shipping of fruits. There are restrictions and regulations regarding the shipping of some fruits and vegetables from state to state to protect against the spread of pest infestation or plant diseases. You can get information about these regulations online or through your shipping company.
Do not ship apples that are overripe. They can rot while in transit or affect the good ones in the package. Wipe the apples with a dry cloth to ensure that they are completely dry when you pack them. Moisture can encourage the growth of molds and mildew.
Wrap each fruit in bubble wrap and place inside a sturdy shipping box with a layer of packing materials such as crumple paper, bubble wrap or packing peanuts on the bottom. Also, keep the apples in the center of the box and away from the sides. Fill the sides of the box with packing materials to protect the fruits from impact due to bumps and falls.
There should be packing materials between layers of apples. Fill any void in the box with packing materials to prevent the fruits from moving and bumping into each other while in transit.
Close the box and shake to check if the contents are moving. If there is no movement, seal the package with packaging tape. Otherwise, fill the box with more packaging materials until there is no movement before sealing shut.
Alternatively, you can ask your local grocery store for apple boxes or crates. These are usually just discarded so you can even have them for free if you ask nicely. These containers usually come with foam trays that hold the apples in place. Just make sure that the used boxes are sturdy and can still provide optimum protection to your apples. Also, remove any labels/bar codes from a re-used box or wrap it in brown shipping paper to avoid issues with scanners and electronic readers.
Address the box and attach shipping labels. Take the package to your local post office or shipping company. Avoid shipping near a weekend or holidays to avoid the risk that the fruits will sit in a holding facility for extended periods of time.