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Packing food and liquids – all you need to know

Packing food and liquids, such as tomato, green salad and olive oil.

When you are moving house, packing is a big part of the process. Some items are easier to pack while others require more attention. Food and liquids are one of those items. You need to pay attention to them if you don’t want them to spill, rot or get damaged. Hence, here is all you need to know about packing food and liquids.

Sort and select

The first thing you should do is sort the food and liquids. This means you should select the items you’re taking with you and remove the items you don’t have to pack because you’re leaving them behind. Make a plan for the things you won’t be taking and make sure that you’re not packing items that shouldn’t be packed. Go through each cabinet and drawer and be very selective. Liquids and food you will not take with you, you can use before the move or donate to shelters, food banks, or give them to friends.

Packing food and liquids, such as cheese, eggs and pasta.
Perishable food better use before the moving day.

Gathering supplies

Before you start packing food and liquids, you should gather all the packing supplies you need, This includes moving boxes, plastic bags, wraps, tapes, and labels. Cardboard boxes will do, so you can drop by the local grocery store and ask for free moving boxes. Labels are very important because they make loading and unpacking much easier. And whoever invented the sign ‘this side up’, is a genius. Additionally, for easier unpacking put additional information, such as ‘spices’ or ‘drinks’.

Dry and canned goods

Make sure to seal with tape all dried or powdered foods such as cereals, rice, and macaroni. This type of food can easily spill and it’s really hard to collect and clean it. Small containers with herbs and spices, gelatin, flavorings, condiments, bouillon cubes, gelatin, flavorings, you should all pack together in a small box. And then, place it in a large carton. Remember to cover holes of containers and seal them with tape. Canned goods and jars are pretty heavy, so you should probably think twice about transporting them. They are generally not expensive so you should consider that additional transport costs could be significantly more than replacement costs.

Frozen food

Be aware that many frozen goods are subject to transportation restrictions, so be sure to ask your moving company ahead of time about non-allowable food and special handling. If you are moving locally, you can transport frozen food, but make sure to keep it cold. Also, it is never a good idea that you transport frozen or refrigerated goods in unplugged appliances, even when moving short distances.

Jar of honey, tangerine and flowers.
Jars and cans are inexpensive but heavy, so you better leave them behind.

Perishable food

Perishable food includes meat, dairy products, eggs, fruit, and vegetables. This type of food can rot easily, and it can be very dangerous if consumed that way. Therefore, this is really a type of goods you shouldn’t transport, even if you are moving a short distance. Instead of moving it, try to use it before the moving day. If you are moving on short notice, you can always make a farewell dinner for your friends and waste nothing.

How do you pack liquids for moving?

Packing food and liquids can be quite a challenge, that’s true. You should be aware that poorly protected liquids can make a real mess and potentially damage all your other belongings. Careful packing with right supplies can save your time and money, and of course your liquids.

Try to use up as many of the liquids as you can before the moving day. Bottles with liquids that are expired or there is only a little left, you should safely dispose or give away. You can always donate unopened cosmetic or personal care products to homeless or women’s shelters. Most of them are easily replaced, and it is sometimes less expensive to buy it new than to pay to have the moving company transport it and risk spilling and ruining other items. All of the cheap movers to consider will tell you that, liquids and canned foods are increasing the weight of your household drastically. Consequently, they are increasing the price too.

Also, most liquids will have to remain with you in your vehicle. All moving companies will provide you with a list of items you cannot pack and transport in their truck or container. Unfortunately, many of them are liquids. Prohibited liquids include flammable gases, explosives, poisons, corrosive materials, and toxic substances:

  • Aerosol cans
  • Bleach
  • Ammonia
  • Nail polish/remover
  • Paints/varnishes
  • Lighter fluid
  • Chemistry sets
  • Cleaning solvents
  • Darkroom chemicals
  • Fertilizer
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Fuels/oils
  • Kerosene
  • Pesticides
  • Poisons
  • Pool chemicals
  • Propane tanks
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Sterno fuel
  • Weed killer
Bottle of perfume with a flowers decoration
Pack small bottles in small box and protect with bubble wrap.

Packing time

For start, smaller liquid bottles such as perfume bottles, cosmetic liquids and nail polish pack first in small boxes. And then, put all those smaller boxes in bigger ones. This way, you will prevent them from squashing during the relocation. You can also put some bubble wrap to fill the gaps between boxes.

  • Pack chemicals in a plastic bin. Because if liquids spill in a cardboard box during the move there is a high chance that it can make a big mess on other boxes that you are moving. Also, you can line the bins with plastic bags and ensure extra protection from unexpected leaking.
  • Seal liquids with plastic wrap and tape. This is great prevention when you pack food and liquids for moving. Just wrap top part of the bottle with the plastic wrap before you screw on the cap. Afterward, you can tape it as well and put the bottle it a plastic bag.
  • Placing buffers will help you not to worry about your liquids during transport. Place them between each bottle to prevent friction and protect your belongings from damage.

Packing food and liquids

Moving and packing foods and liquids can be quite a pickle. It takes a lot of time and energy to pack them properly. But if you pack only necessary goods and protect them as advised, they will arrive at your new home in the same state they were before the move. We wish you a happy moving!