Swissport adds pharma shipment consolidation service in Basel

Source: Swissport

Swissport has opened a new “Cool+Connect” pharma facility at EuroAirport Basel-Mulhouse that allows it to consolidate shipments at the airport and reduce truck journeys.

The new facility is larger than the existing pharma area at 20 m x 5 m and expands Swissport’s overall pharma capacity at the airport from 94 sq m to 230 sq m.

Because the facility is larger, Swissport will now be able to consolidate various shipments into a single pharma container at the airport.

Previously, shipments needed to be transported ready to fly each in their own cool containers.

The handler explained this should help reduce the number of truck journeys as now a single temperature-controlled truck can pick up shipments from various locations and take them to the airport to be loaded in the cool container.

In the past, trucks would need to drop cool containers off at each pharma location individually in the morning to be loaded before coming back later in the day to pick up the container already prepared for its flight.

This process typically required two roundtrips per truck and allowed for a maximum capacity of only 20 EuroPallets per truck because of the extra space required to carry the cooltainers versus pallets.

Now the pharma shipments can be taken to the airport on pallets, shippers can to load up to 34 EuroPallets per truck. 

The new facility also has a dedicated loading dock – unlike the existing facility – so a temperature of 2-8 degrees Celsius can be maintained throughout and the unloading process is faster.

“By consolidating shipments from the same suppliers in a single truck instead of several as before, CO2 emissions and handling time are reduced by around 70% (from 4.5 to 1.5 hours),” Swissport said.

“‘cool+connect’ is the first of its kind and we are proud to offer this innovation to our customers at EuroAirport,” said Andreas Behnke, station manager Basel, and member of the Swissport Global Cargo committee.

“The cool chain infrastructure for pharmaceutical centers with many refrigerated containers meets a global need in the logistics industry. Swissport offers a proven, standardised terminal for airlines, logistics providers and airports to outsource business-critical operations.”

Meanwhile, Swissport said it aims to achieve CEIV certification across its network, with Geneva, Switzerland, and Hamburg, Germany, already in the planning stages.

In the US, Swissport is actively pursuing certification for major pharmaceutical centers at Miami International Airport and Chicago O’Hare International Airport, reinforcing its dedication to providing world-class handling of pharmaceutical goods.

Swissport Frankfurt recertified by IATA for pharma

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Damian Brett

Damian Brett
I have been writing about the freight and logistics industry since 2007 when I joined International Freighting Weekly to cover the shipping sector. After a stint in PR, I have gone on to work for Containerisation International and Lloyds List - where I was editor of container shipping - before joining Air Cargo News in 2015. Contact me on [email protected]