As far as temperature-sensitivity is concerned, not all items are the same.
Refrigerated trucking is a real treasure to humanity as this service allows transporting goods and food that require temperature control. Without this type of trucking service, it is next to impossible to get products from the other side of the country. Given how essential these services are, there’s no shortage of opportunities for those looking to start their trucking career.
The United States houses a number of refrigerated trucking companies that are doing their best to transport products in different temperature zones. In this guide, we'll be discussing the top refrigerated trucking companies that promise to deliver items in good condition to your pharmacy and local store. All of these are great places to work too. Have a look!
What is Refrigerated Trucking?
Refrigerated trucking, as the name suggests, is a cargo shipment method in a temperature-controlled manner. This method is specially employed for the transportation of foods and products that must be delivered at a specific temperature.
A trailer hauling food and other temperature-sensitive products are ideally designed to achieve the low-temperature level. It has a built-in refrigeration system to provide the right cooling so that the products remain in their pre-shipped state when they reach their destination.
The protection of materials and products, regardless of weather conditions, is the biggest asset of refrigerated trucking. This method is quite helpful in the safe hauling and transportation of fresh products across the country. It also specializes in transporting plants, pharmaceuticals, and personal care products that can’t be delivered by dry van.
Review of the Top 10 Refrigerated Trucking Companies
Several companies offer the services of refrigerated carriers across the region. Here is a detailed review of our top recommendations to help you choose the best of the bunch.
Let’s get started!
1. KLLM Transport Services
- Address: KLLM Transport Services 135 Riverview Drive Richland, MS 39218
- Phone Number: 866-682-3010
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: https://www.kllm.com/
Who is KLLM Transport Services?
KKLM Transport Service is not a new name in the refrigerated carrier industry. Second to none, this company has used innovative technologies to set the bar high. It is probably one of the most advanced freight transportation agencies that live up to customers' expectations.
Established in 1972, the company started the business by handling exempt commodities across the US. Over the years, with passion and great teamwork, KLLM marked its position as one of the most diverse refrigerated shippers. They currently operate almost 2308 trucks for over 222 million miles to provide a reliable experience to their clients.
The quality of services KLLM provides is just impeccable. Their main focus is to take care of their clients in the best way possible. While they are quite keen on their clients' needs, they are never ignorant of the necessities of their employees. You can apply for various posts in this company.
KLLM is dedicated to providing a friendly atmosphere to its employees to make the most of their skills. You can work as a driver, fleet officer, and even a technician. Similarly, you can join the office staff. The drivers are treated like family and facilitated in every way possible. All you need is the right passion for being a part of KLLM.
Salary and Benefits
KLLM stands out from the crowd for providing unmatchable services to its clients. Similarly, it always strives to provide the best care for its employees. As they say, happy employees mean happy clients and happy clients means a happy company.
Besides the friendly behavior that the company has developed with the employees, the staff is paid pretty well with added benefits, so it remains committed to the company. A local driver can easily make as much as $49,205 per year while a professional driver can earn up to $51,396 in a year. An operator is granted health benefits apart from a yearly salary of around $86,821.
2. Stevens Transport
- Address: 9757 Military Pkwy, Dallas, TX 75227
- Phone Number: 1-800-806-4917
- Website: https://www.stevenstransport.com/
Who is Stevens Transport?
An award-winning carrier, Stevens Transport holds a very inspiring history. It all started back in the late 70s when Steve hit the transportation industry despite all the challenges. Over the years, the company developed its position by employing some remarkable strategies.
It is currently valued by many multinational companies and has become an elite contributor to the advanced supply chain. With a fleet of 2139 trucks, Stevens Transport has a huge network of operations spanning North America. They offer specialized temperature-controlled vehicles to meet regional, dedicated, long-haul, and intermodal needs. This company is known for integrating the latest technology and featuring the perfect safety record.
Nothing is impossible with the right team. The company does its best to satisfy employees and helps them grow by providing them great opportunities. Stevens Transport provides significant job security and career advancement opportunities.
The company recruits only the best drivers in town and provides them a great working environment. You can apply for a range of jobs from operator to fleet manager according to your expertise. Apart from this, Stevens Transport has a great office staff that strives to facilitate the client's problems with the right freight solutions. To add on, they offer one of the best truck driving training programs out there.
Salary and Benefits
Stevens Transport takes care of its employees by giving them bonuses and benefits. As one of the top five carriers of temperature-sensitive items around the US, this company maintains an exceptional safety record. The employees play a key role in making the company exceptionally consistent and reliable.
A heavy truck driver can easily earn from $23k to $58k a year. Similarly, a training manager can make from $43k to $89k in reward of his services. While the yearly wages of a human resource (HR) director is almost $62k to $116k, a senior programmer analyst can get from $67k to $119k per year.
3. Prime Inc.
- Address: 2740 North Mayfair, Springfield, MO 65803
- Phone Number: 1-800-321-4552
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: https://www.primeinc.com/
Who is Prime Inc.?
Prime Inc. was originally founded in 1970 with its headquarters in Springfield, Missouri. This company is known to be a leader in the refrigerated trucking company with the lowest trucking costs. Apart from refrigerated transportation, Prime Inc. offers flatbed and tanker trucking services as well.
With more than 4100 company and leased tractors and almost 5800 fleet trailers, they are best in the business. Being one of the most dominant trucking companies, they provide services for over 700 million miles covering the US, Mexico, and Canada. They can take care of any item, be it refrigerated food, hazardous materials, or paper products.
The main focus of Prime Inc. is delivering the best services with reliability, competitive pricing, and of course, commitment. You can join the company as a driver or staff member as per your expertise. They have almost 6775 drivers to safely transport goods in a temperature-controlled manner and are always looking for more.
The company is committed to providing an immediate response to the problems of clients. For this reason, openings for efficient office staff that keeps everything in order are also available. They will also be responsible for the safety of their drivers and technicians. All the employees get to work in a friendly and cooperative environment to boost their skills.
Salary and Benefits
Employees at Prime Inc. are paid well for what they do. Besides a good working atmosphere, they are offered attractive salary packages to remain committed to the company. In fact, most permanent staff members are granted multiple benefits, including health insurance, dental insurance, and vacations.
The average yearly wages at Prime Inc. range from $34k to $121k according to the scale of employees. An OTR truck driver can easily earn around $50,894 a year. On the other hand, drivers of heavy trailers are expected to make as much as $45,625 per year. To add on, here you can join a paid CDL license training program that trains you in safe driving according to federal laws and regulations.
4. C.R. England
- Address: 4701 W 2100th S, Salt Lake City, UT
- Phone Number: 801-974-3318
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: https://www.crengland.com/
Who is C.R. England?
Since its establishment in 1920, C.R. England has been delivering some of the best services on the market. It has become the name of a reliable refrigerated trucking service in the United States. It is known for its rail, long-haul, and short-distance trucking services. Additionally, it offers heavy-duty freight transportation in and out of Mexico.
For almost 100 years, the company has been committed to safely transporting meat, beverages, and even chemicals in temperature-controlled vehicles. All the freight transportations are offered at competitive rates with exceptional services to meet expectations. The company holds the record for timely deliveries and customized trucking services across the US.
You can't expect a company to work exceptionally well if the employees are not completely satisfied. Here, at C.R. England, all employees are treated very well and provided with a remarkable working atmosphere. Since the company is quite committed to delivering the best, it has one of the finest staff.
They have jobs for drivers with years of experience, loaders/unloaders/operators, and fleet managers. Similarly, they need technicians for the proper maintenance of trucks. The office staff is very efficient and responsive to clients' queries, regardless of the time of the day. So, if you have good management and communication skills, this company is just the right place for you.
Salary and Benefits
We all know that a company is nothing without the effort of employees. C.R. England takes this thing very seriously and, therefore, facilitates employees in every way possible. Not only are they paid well, but permanent employees receive multiple bonuses and benefits by the end of the year. They have health insurance, dental insurance, and even job security.
The average salary of an OTR truck driver ranges from $26k to $87k. It all depends on the expertise and performance of the driver. Similarly, while an efficient company driver can easily make up to $500 per week, the weekly wages of a professional company driver are around $1100.
5. Marten Transport
- Address: 129 Marten Street, Mondovi, WI 54755
- Phone Number: 1-855-336-1734
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: https://www.marten.com/
Who is Marten Transport?
Marten Transport is the name of an exceptional provider of temperature-controlled transportations. They take pride in offering impeccable services and shipping refrigerated goods for decades. Interestingly, they have been the winners of the Truckload Carrier Association safety contest from 1997 to 2001 in a row.
The company has its headquarters in Mondovi, Wisconsin, and is committed to providing high-quality refrigerated services to clients. They provide local, regional, and long-haul trucking services across the US. With more than 3670 employees and 2810 fleet trucks, the company is currently operative in 15 different locations. In short, if you want safe temperature-controlled shipments, Marten Transport is the right choice.
One of the efficient carriers of fragile goods, Marten Transport takes care of its employees very well. It has recruited around 2810 professional drivers with years of experience. The company treats drivers like family and does everything to keep them satisfied.
In case you are interested, you can either join as an investor or driver. Similarly, you can apply for a fleet manager, operator, analyst, and loader/unloader. The company recruits skilled technicians to maintain the condition of trucks. You can’t ignore the fact that the office staff works efficiently to cater to clients' needs.
Salary and Benefits
Everybody loves to work in a friendly atmosphere and earn a good salary. Marten Transport always encourages its employees to promote teamwork for the betterment of the company. In reward, they are paid well for the satisfaction of their expectations.
The average salary of Marten Transport’s employees is around $50k. An efficient company driver can easily make up to $46,177 a year. Similarly, an operator-driver can make as much as $119,876 per year. The yearly wages of a professional driver are about $53k, which is pretty good.
Apart from lucrative earnings, employees enjoy multiple bonuses and benefits. Permanent employees are granted health insurance, dental insurance, and vacations with family.
6. TransAm Trucking Inc.
- Address: 15910 S. Highway 169, Olathe, KS 66062
- Phone Number: 913-782-5300
- Website: https://www.transamtruck.com/
Who is TransAm Trucking Inc.?
TransAm Trucking Inc. joined the trucking industry in 1987, and since then, it has become a renowned name for the transportation of fragile goods. Over the years, it has developed its reputation as a premium carrier of temperature-controlled shipments.
With almost 1000 tractors and more than 2400 trailers, the company has built a huge network across the US. The company headquarters is in Olathe, KS. One of the interesting things is that this company has integrated the latest technology to offer its clients the best possible experience. It has a good team and professional drivers. Moreover, it offers great logistics services to help clients in the hour of need.
The company is home to many professional and experienced drivers. It has earned a name for itself with consistency and, of course, teamwork. The recruitment of efficient staff members has helped the company to make it this far. Transam is one of the leading companies of hauling temperature-controlled freight. Transam also offers dry-van services.
Employees get to work in a friendly environment and are provided multiple opportunities to flourish in their field. The company hires only professional and responsible drivers to value the needs of its clients. They offer jobs to skilled technicians to properly maintain the working conditions of the trucks. Similarly, with the right communication skills, you can also work in the office where you will have to answer customers’ queries and give constant updates of their shipments as per their requirements.
Salary and Benefits
The working environment can really influence the marketplace of any company. If the employees are not happy, you can’t expect them to work their best for the company. TransAm Trucking Inc. is quite particular about this and, therefore, always takes care of its employees.
The truck drivers are at liberty to set their schedules and move around the country according to their desire. Similarly, permanent employees are provided with health insurance, dental insurance, and a vacation with the family.
A professional class-A driver can easily make as much as $51,223 per year. On the other hand, the yearly wages of an OTR driver are $40,219. As an owner-operator you can earn $1.04/mile loaded or empty.
7. Swift Refrigerated
- Address: 2200 S. 75th Ave. Phoenix, AZ 85043
- Phone Number: 1-800-800-2200
- Website: https://www.swifttrans.com/
Who is Swift Refrigerated?
Swift Refrigerated is probably one of the largest carriers of refrigerated items. It has the biggest refrigerated trucking fleets in the country. With an experience of over 50 years in the industry, the company has been consistent in catering to the needs of clients.
The company offers multiple services, including dry van, flatbed, heavy-haul, logistics, intermodal, and refrigerated across the US and Mexico. It has more than 22,000 drivers to cover almost two billion miles. They have all planned out logistics services with equipment offering to complement clients’ needs. Plus, the best thing is the drivers are trained to deliver the shipments right on time.
Being one of the highest refrigerated trucking companies in the US, Swift Refrigerated has almost everything to suit your needs. They have a good team of efficient employees who are always ready to solve clients' freight problems. You can apply for a range of jobs as per your experience.
If you are a good driver with years of experience, this company has a place for you. You can join either as a company driver or a local driver. Moreover, they always need skilled technicians to check the working condition of the trucks. To add on, there are jobs for fleet managers and operators to keep every shipment in order and meet clients' expectations. All in all, Swift Refrigerated is a reliable place to start your career.
Salary and Benefits
Swift Refrigerated has a large network of fleets running across the country. They never waste a second to avoid downtime and, therefore, have become a reliable company. The company invests in technology to provide customers with updates about their shipments.
Here at Swift Refrigerated, employees get to work in a good working atmosphere with all the facilities. They are offered handsome salary packages as well as benefits. The common benefits offered to permanent employees include health insurance and dental insurance. Moreover, drivers can easily set the schedule and work according to their time.
The average salary of a call center representative at Swift Refrigerated is $17k. Similarly, a financial planning analyst can make around $73k a year. While a tractor-trailer driver can earn around $9 per hour, the hourly wages of a diesel mechanic are $23.23.
Is Swift a Good Company to Drive For?
Overall, Swift is a good company to start your career and learn all the necessary skills. The salary is pretty good as a driver can easily earn around $73k a year. The only concern is long working hours that even go for days at a time. There are better opportunities for experienced drivers out there.
8. Hirschbach Motor Lines
- Address: 2460 Kerper Blvd., Dubuque, IA 61025
- Phone Number: 800-554-2969
- Website: https://www.hirschbach.com/
Who is Hirschbach Motor Lines?
A private company with almost 80 years of experience, Hirschbach Motor Lines has everything for transporting products in a temperature-controlled manner. It has built strong relationships with clients and takes care of them very well.
It operates from the Midwest to the South while offering multiple services, including refrigerated and specialized ones all over the 48 states. Their main focus is to provide dedicated transportation solutions with professional drivers at a competitive price. Here you will find a solution for every trucking problem. They even offer custom-tailored yard management services, high volume moves, heavy-haul movements, and warehouse cold storage.
The moment you join Hirschbach Motor Lines, you become a part of the family. As mentioned above, the company has developed fine relationships with clients. In fact, their core value is to facilitate customers, drivers, employees, vendors, and even partner carriers equally.
This company has jobs for professional and responsible drivers who can conduct the shipment with maximum safety. You can also join either as a fleet manager or an operator. To add on, there are jobs for experienced technicians to keep the trucks good on roads. All the employees are treated very well and facilitated to the fullest. Apart from this, they recruit trained staff to plan transportation on time.
Salary and Benefits
Once Hirschbach Motor Lines recruits you, you are no longer an employee; you are a family member. They have always treated people working for them in the best way possible. Apart from good salaries, permanent employees are granted benefits, as well as bonuses.
Drivers get to enjoy health insurance and medical insurance. Plus, the best thing is that they are free to set the schedule and then move around the country according to their will.
The average salary of an experienced and responsible truck driver is around $80k, which is pretty amazing. They get to receive vacation pay as well.
9. Navajo Express
- Address: Navajo Express Corporate Headquarters 1400 W. 64th Ave. Denver, CO 80221
- Phone Number: 800-525-1969
- Email: N/A
- Website: https://www.navajoexpress.com/
Who is Navajo Express?
Navajo Express has been in the trucking business for over 75 years. Since its establishment, it has continued to provide the best-refrigerated trucking services in the US. They exceptionally fulfill their motto of a strong commitment to the clients. With a fleet of almost 788 trucks, the company always takes care of the freight that needs to be carefully transported to the destination.
It is an expert in hauling meat, refrigerated food, chemicals, garbage, paper products, building materials, general freight, and hazardous materials across the country. With its headquarters in Denver, CO, Navajo Express covers all 48 states.
If you are willing to drive, Navajo Express is the right place for you. This company is well-recognized for maintaining a great working environment to promote teamwork and cooperation.
You can become a part of this company if you are a skilled driver with years of experience. There are jobs for local drivers as well as company drivers. Similarly, you can apply for other posts like a fleet manager and operator. The company always appoints some skilled technicians to keep the trucks in good working condition. With the right communication skills and impressive management, you can also join the office staff.
Salary and Benefits
When it comes to salary, Navajo Express is a good company to earn a lucrative life. Not only is the salary good, but the company offers various benefits and bonuses to the employees to keep them committed.
A heavy trailer driver can easily earn from $31k to $74k in a year. Similarly, a claim manager can make as much as $79k per year. While a commercial truck driver's yearly wages range from $27k to $59k, a freight broker can easily earn up to 55k a year.
There are other benefits like health insurance and dental insurance as well.
10. John Christner Trucking
- Address: 19007 W. Hwy 33 Sapulpa, OK 74067-1900
- Phone Number: 877-528-4478
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: https://www.johnchristner.com/
Who is John Christner Trucking?
If you are looking for a dependable refrigerated trucking company for the transportation of your goods in a safe manner, John Christner Trucking is just the right choice. The company has been focusing on excelling in the business since its establishment.
They have all the attributes of a high-quality refrigerated company. With a fleet of almost 802 trucks, the company has developed a big network across the US. Drivers cover almost 109 million miles to live up to the expectations of customers. Their key to success is responding to every customer request and facilitating them in every way possible. Currently, they offer the services of meat, beverages, and refrigerated food transportation.
A company can't become a highly ranked carrier without cooperative and professional staff. John Christner Trucking takes pride in recruiting efficient staff members to provide an excellent service to their customers.
With a total of 885 drivers, the company is always in search of responsible drivers to transport goods in a temperature-controlled manner across the US. So, you can apply for the position of a local driver, as well as a company driver. The trucks are integrated with the latest technology, so the company offers jobs to skilled technicians to keep the trucks in good working condition.
To add on, they need a fleet manager and operator to keep operations in order.
Salary and Benefits
A great option for miles and loads, John Christner Trucking takes care of its employees pretty well. They are all offered attractive salary packages and benefits to build their trust in the company.
Firstly, all permanent employees are provided with health and dental insurance. To add on, they can enjoy a vacation with their families once a year. Here, drivers are treated very well and given the freedom to set the schedule according to their desire.
A heavy truck driver can easily make around $47k per year in this company. Though there is no frequent raise in the pay, the company maintains a cooperative working environment.
That was all about the best-refrigerated trucking companies in the US. All of them are experts in the transportation of temperature-sensitive shipments. They have a range of jobs to suit your expertise. You can join any of them to earn a lucrative life. Though it all comes down to your personal preference, you must think with an open mind before making a final decision.
People Also Ask
Transportation of refrigerated goods can be overwhelming, so companies always need professional staff for successful transportation. You have to do your research before applying to a company for any post. Since there are a number of companies, it is imperative to have certain questions raised in your mind. This section answers common queries so you can make an informed decision in the end.
Who is the Largest Refrigerated Trucking Company?
With an annual mileage of about 700 million, Prime Inc. leads the refrigerated trucking company in the US. With almost 4100 company tractors, 5800 reefer trailers, 250 tanker trailers, and 50 flatbed trailers, this company has developed a huge network across the country. That's not all; they offer their services in Mexico and Canada as well, making them a leader in the business.
Does Driving a Refrigerated Truck Require Different Certifications?
Refrigerated trucking requires a lot of skills to avoid any potential damage. The driver must have a CDL license earned from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. This agency is responsible for regulating trucking in all 50 states of the US. Once you get the CDL, you can add various endorsements and move around the country freely.
Do You Get Paid More to Drive a Refrigerated Truck?
Driving a refrigerated truck is a bit different from driving a regular truck. You need to be more careful and responsible while conducting temperature-controlled transportation. This is why the average salary of a refrigerated truck driver is a bit higher than that of a regular trailer driver. A professional refrigerated truck driver can make from $50k to $80k a year.
Who Are the Five Largest Refrigerated Trucking Companies?
With the best staff and professional drivers, Prime Inc., C.R. England, KLLM Transport Services, Stevens Transport, and Marten Transport Ltd. rule the refrigerated trucking industry. They stand out from their rivals by offering top-notch services and fantastic customer care. All of them promise to provide special services tailored to your needs.
What Does “Reefer” Trucking Mean?
In some cases, food and perishable goods are transported under specific temperature by skilled drivers from one part of the country to another. A reefer is basically a refrigerated trailer attached to a semi-truck. It proves to be effective in the successful transportation of refrigerated cargo without the food getting spoiled.
Is Driving a Refrigerated Truck Dangerous?
Refrigerated trucking is all about consistency and care. Since refrigerated cargo is perishable and temperature-sensitive, extra care and training are required. The driver needs to be really vigilant and, of course, responsible for delivering the shipment right on time. If the requirements are not followed strictly, there is a risk of food spoilage or, worse, the cargo becoming a public health hazard.