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The International Air Cargo Association and Pharma.Aero have joined forces to develop global guidance for the air cargo industry to enable optimal transportation of the COVID-19 vaccine.
The guidance will be developed gradually in four work packages through a joint working group to ensure feedback from all stakeholders in the supply chain of air cargo and pharmaceuticals.
In the past few months, air freight has demonstrated once again its vital role in the global economy and distribution of essential medical supplies. In the months to come, air freight will again make an important contribution to the global public good and in fighting this pandemic by playing a vital role in the COVID-19 vaccine global supply chain.
As pharmaceutical companies race to develop the COVID-19 vaccine, it is still unclear what impact this vaccine will have on the global supply chain, specifically, logistics requirements and the air cargo industry. To address these concerns, the joint working group will bring to the table all the key industry stakeholders, including pharmaceutical manufacturers and logistics businesses.
The aim of this program is to provide the air cargo industry with more clarity of the demands, expectations and quality supply chain requirements, including but not restricted to critical trade lanes, air cargo capacity, handling and storage, track and trace requirements, for the transportation of the vaccines. At the same time, shippers will gain more understanding about the capabilities of the various logistics players. This will ensure that once the vaccine is available in the market, the air cargo industry will be ready to respond to the needs of the shippers and transport vaccines in optimal conditions to all corners of the globe.
“COVID-19 vaccine delivery will be one of the biggest logistical challenges in modern history. No one company can own the end-to-end vaccine supply chain,” said Neel Jones Shah, TIACA board member and Global Head of Airfreight at Flexport. “I’m proud to be a member of the TIACA and Pharma.Aero working group, which is doing the critical work of connecting all vaccine supply chain stakeholders to foster effective communication and collaboration. We need to start working together now to ensure the industry is prepared when the time comes.”
“Setting up reliable end-to-end air transportation for pharma shippers is part of the vision and mission of Pharma.Aero. Amongst our members i.e. life sciences and pharmaceutical shippers, certified airport communities and air cargo operators, we have a track record of project-based collaboration,” says Nathan De Valck, chairman of Pharma.Aero. “As a result, Pharma.Aero is well-positioned to make a valuable contribution in preparing the air cargo industry for this immense challenge.”
The working group will consist of members of both organisations and will also reach out to various international organizations. The results will be shared with the industry through white papers and webinars in later stages of the program which aims to complete by end of 2020.
JAL and Matternet to launch drone delivery business partnership in Japan
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Matternet M2 drone system to be deployed in Tokyo’s new drone logistics project and utilized to assess drone delivery healthcare opportunities in Japan
Japan Airlines and Matternet signed an MOU to assess drone delivery healthcare opportunities and develop a future drone healthcare delivery business in Japan utilizing Matternet’s world-leading M2 urban drone logistics platform.
Due to the lack of delivery personnel and the impact of the global pandemic, the necessity to respond to changes in the logistics industry has become more urgent than ever before and the use of drones may help realize automatic, contactless delivery services on remote islands, mountainous areas and even within the city.
Since last year, JAL has been conducting demonstrations on transporting relief supplies through various trials within Japan. Currently, in order to develop logistics services using drones, JAL is studying the feasibility for the commercialization of such services with various companies and hospitals. Through this partnership, Matternet will conduct a joint research project with JAL in Japan, as the company continues to expand its commercial business globally. Further, JAL will consider to deploy the Matternet M2 drone system in the drone logistics business development project of Tokyo to possibly develop a sustainable business model.
Matternet is the leading developer of on-demand, autonomous, urban drone logistics systems for transporting medical items across distributed healthcare networks, providing its technology platform-as-a-service to healthcare and logistics organizations. Matternet has launched successful drone networks around the world and received regulatory approval from the Swiss Federal Office of Civil Aviation and U.S. Federal Aviation Administration to conduct fully-autonomous Beyond Line of Sight operations and Flights Over People to transport critical, high-value medical items. To date, Matternet technology has enabled 10,000+ commercial revenue drone flights.
“We are very excited to expand our operations to Asia and partner with JAL to show the incredible impact of drone delivery to Japan’s cities, starting with the Tokyo metropolitan area,” said Andreas Raptopoulos, CEO of Matternet. “Matternet’s drone delivery platform enables extremely fast and predictable transport of urgent items and stands to revolutionize how healthcare and e-commerce are delivered in cities and megacities around the world.”
“Japan Airlines is eager to explore the future of its air logistics business with the implementation of drone delivery,” said Tomohiro Nishihata, Japan Airlines’ Managing Executive Officer of Innovation. “We aim to contribute to improving healthcare and solving logistics issues through our partnership with Matternet.”
JAL aims to develop a new type of service in the air transportation industry, utilizing new UAV technology, by delivering the operational platform in New Air mobility and achieve key sustainable development goals.
DHL Global Forwarding connects three continents with dedicated flight
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DHL Global Forwarding, the freight forwarding specialist of Deutsche Post DHL Group, has launched an air freight charter connecting Asia Pacific to Europe and the U.S. to meet demand from customers in the technology, manufacturing and life science and healthcare sectors. Managed by StarBroker, DHL Global Forwarding’s in-house charter team, the twice-weekly charter originates from Chongqing, China and flies to Amsterdam, Netherlands; Chicago, United States; Incheon, South Korea before returning to China.
Thomas Mack, Head of Global Air Freight DHL Global Forwarding said, “While some passenger airlines have resumed operations, the situation in the air freight market remains volatile — especially as belly capacity is still tight As the leader in the air freight market, DHL Global Forwarding’s top priority is to provide our customers with sufficient and reliable air freight capacity. Not only are the resilient, agile and reliable supply chains of highest importance for an economic recovery, but also in preparation for the availability of vaccines and other essential medical supplies during the pandemic.”
South Korea has seen its export of healthcare products rise year-on-year by 26.7% in the first half of 2020, with pharmaceutical goods in particular increasing by 52.5%. China has exported 28.5% more medical devices in the first five months of the year as compared to a year ago. In 2019, China, the Netherlands and the United States were among the top ten importers and exporters of medical goods.
“Over the years, DHL has built up its expertise from globally certified facilities and staff to technologies that track shipments in real-time in addition to ensuring the integrity of such products throughout their journey. Getting the much-needed air capacity is the last piece in the value chain puzzle, so to speak, that ensures temperature sensitive products such as life-saving vaccines reach the communities-in-need,” added Mack.
In a recently published white paper DHL together with McKinsey & Company as analytics partner explores the logistics challenges for vaccines and medical goods during COVID-19. To provide global coverage of COVID-19 vaccines, up to ~200,000 pallet shipments and ~15 million deliveries in cooling boxes as well as ~15,000 flights will be required across the various supply chain set-ups.
DHL Global Forwarding has a global network of facilities that meet the European Union’s Good Distribution Practice (GDP) guidelines for life science and healthcare supply chains. The leading international provider of air, sea and road freight services has a suite of temperature-controlled freight solutions such as DHL Air Thermonet and DHL LifeConEx that allows real-time visibility and active monitoring for the movement of goods that could include medicines, supplements, vaccines, medical devices and diagnostic equipment.
To meet growing demand for imports of temperature-controlled and high-technology goods into Australia, DHL Global Forwarding will also launch a new airfreight charter on September 23. Flying four times a week, the charter will consolidate goods from Europe, China and Singapore in Hong Kong before transporting them to Sydney, Australia.
In April 2020, DHL Global Forwarding tapped on its network of life science and healthcare facilities, temperature-controlled solutions and customs clearance expertise to fly more than 1.3 million Covid-19 test kits from South Korea to Brazil, Ecuador, India, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Saudi Arabia. The freight forwarder also launched a dedicated 100-ton weekly air freight service for organizations and governments shipping health and medical-related items and other goods from China to Middle East and Africa.
From prescription drugs to vaccines, Delta Cargo has the pharmaceutical shipment service for you
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Delta Cargo was the first U.S. passenger carrier to receive IATA’s Center of Excellence for Independent Validators (CEIV) Pharma Logistics Certification in 2017. This certification recognizes that we are compliant, in our Atlanta warehouse and at over 50 specialized Pharma approved airports across the globe provided through our handling partners, with the highest industry standards for the shipment of pharmaceuticals, vaccines and life sciences.
We know that the difference in a few degrees can save lives when it comes to delivering temperature-sensitive shipments. As part of this, we have expanded our cooler facilities at the Atlanta warehouse. Our priority boarding and quick connection times also minimize exposure to outside temperatures ensuring the integrity of the product. We offer four tailored options which come with a variety of containers and coolers designed to meet specific temperature requirements. Plus, we can transport Pharma shipments containing dry ice to support the transportation of vaccines.
As our current flight network is reduced due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, our cargo charters team can assist with any pharmaceutical transportation needs if they are outside of our existing network, ensuring peace of mind for our customers.
“Pharmaceutical and medical supplies are in high demand and we historically transport more than 5,500 pharma shipments each year, in fact it is in the top three most shipped commodities,” said Shawn Cole, Vice President-Cargo. “The safe and efficient transportation of Pharma products for the healthcare and pharmaceutical industry is a key priority for us. We continue to invest in our facilities, equipment, operations and staff to ensure that we comply with all applicable standards, regulations and guidelines expected from pharmaceutical manufacturers.”
From drug research and development, to transporting vital medicine to patients who rely on us to maintain product integrity, Delta Cargo is making a difference to the communities we serve. Our partner airlines also have Pharma certification which provides significant opportunities for shipping pharmaceuticals across the Pacific and Atlantic. Air France-KLM Cargo and Korean Air Cargo are both CEIV certified, while Virgin Atlantic Cargo has Wholesale Distribution Authorization (WDA) enabling true end-to-end compliance and assurance for customers across a broad network of flights across the globe.
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