Cool Chain Association (CCA) chairman Sebastiaan Scholte (pictured above) is to step down from the role at the association’s AGM in June.
Speaking at IATA’s WCS he explained to Air Cargo Week he is proud of the work achieved over the four years he has been at the helm, and feels the CCA has grown under his tenure. A new chairman will be elected at the AGM in June.
“It is time for a change and I have had an amount of time and we have grown a lot. What we did and said is – we are going to be the association for the air cargo supply chain,” Scholte says.
“Of course we want to change the world, but we must influence things we can influence. If Trump has protectionist policies what can we do about it? Our focus is on the supply chain, and the pharmaceuticals and perishables sectors through the two events we are organising.”
Scholte says he is proud the CCA has grown to what it is today with two successful cool chain events: “I am really happy that when we now say something people listen and that is what we really wanted – to raise awareness of the cool chain.”
He says the better events have also given the not-for-profit organisation cash reserves, giving it the chance to put these funds to good use: “We are making money, which is not the aim but it gives us the chance to do more. We are more global now and if we are really successful we might have a regional cool chain event.
“What I am really proud of now is that people are approaching us about wanting to do something in the cool chain.”
Cool chain is arguably one of the most important industry sectors as perishables and pharma continue to grow, and companies invest in IATA CEIV Pharma or build temperature-controlled infrastructure for pharma and perishables.
Scholte says the attention pharma is getting now is amazing along with the exponential growth and hails initiatives like at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol and its Pharma Gateway project.
He feels it is great the industry is finally sharing data, processes and cooperating more as “together we are stronger“ and believes a supply chain is only as strong as its “weakest link”.
Scholte is also vice chairman of The International Air Cargo Association (TIACA) and he believes the more air cargo communities developed the better and TIACA can play a role. “I think TIACA can play a more active and big role in connecting airport air cargo communities together across the globe together to boost the air cargo supply chain,” he explains.
As for how TIACA is coming along, Scholte says he is happy with the progress it is making. “I think we are doing some innovative new things like getting young talent on-board such as the young professionals development programme event where the whole air cargo supply chain look in each other’s shop for the day which was held in the Netherlands in February.
“I have got a couple of requests (at WCS) from other communities and airlines who said they like it and asked if we could help set them one up in other parts of the world. We will do a couple of other similar airport programmes under the TIACA umbrella,“ Scholte says.
The chief executive officer of Jan de Rijk Logistics also feels with Vladimir Zubkov coming in as director general it will improve advocacy – a key area for TIACA – as it builds more cooperation with the likes of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the Airports Council International (ACI) and in sectors such as the cool chain.