Panalpina goes paperless

04 / 12 / 2013

  • Panalpina operates paperless services to Europe, Hong Kong and the USA

    Panalpina operates paperless services to Europe, Hong Kong and the USA

PANALPINA is claiming to be the first air cargo company in the world to achieve completely paperless flights for general airfreight.

Using a B747-8 freighter, the global freight forwarder now operates several paperless port-to-port services to Europe, Hong Kong and the USA. 

Following its inaugural paper-free general cargo flight from Alabama’s Huntsville airport to Luxembourg, Panalpina now also runs regular paper-free services from Luxembourg to Hong Kong and from Guadalajara (Mexico) to Huntsville.

 “By 2015, the company aims to eradicate 80 per cent of [paper] pouches for all general air cargo, be it on its own network or on commercial flights, ” says a statement.

The average airfreight shipment generates 30 documents, IATA research shows.

“Panalpina is showing great leadership in adopting e-freight and assisting our efforts in transforming the future of the airfreight industry,” enthuses Des Vertannes, head of cargo at IATA.

“As a global industry initiative, e-freight can only be achieved with the full cooperation of business partners, so we encourage others to follow this example.”

Lucas Kuehner, global head of airfreight at Panalpina, observes: “The benefits of going digital are clear: more efficiency, less cost, reduced environmental impact and increased data quality – but it isn’t easy.

“Airfreight is complex, fragmented and lacks standardisation – but we are overcoming these challenges together with our partners. Our e-freight ambassadors are out there building connections and we train our staff to help make e-freight a reality,” he adds.

Meanwhile, Jeannette Goeldi, responsible for air cargo global standards and governance at Panalpina, stresses: “E-freight doesn’t happen overnight and it requires a lot of groundwork before it can truly take off.

“But our successes so far are an encouraging sign. We’ve established a solid foundation for the future, and we will continue to expand and improve our work to remain at the forefront of e-freight.”