TNT signs up two for new cold chain service

A TNT Boeing 747 Freighter unloads

Express delivery company TNT has signed up two customers for its new cold chain packaging and shipping service Medpak VI°C, which officially launches this month.

One is a clinical trial company and the other is a global biotech company. TNT did not reveal who had signed up.

Medpak VI°C is a reusable temperature-controlled packaging network service to help healthcare manufacturers reduce costs and waste when shipping temperature-sensitive pharmaceutical and biological materials.

This service is called Medpak VI°C because it guarantees a temperature variance of no more than one degree Celsius during transport.

Stricter regulations on patient safety and the growth in biologic drugs are increasing the need for proven cold chain logistics solutions, but these are often provided at a high price by specialist firms with no own delivery network.

With Medpak VI°C, TNT offers an all-inclusive service that combines high-end temperature-controlled packaging solutions with the comfort of a transport integrator’s air and road network. The service comes with tracking and monitoring services to ensure compliant cold chain management.

Central to Medpak VI°C is the patented, cold chain packaging technology from the German company va-Q-tec. This packaging solution uses PCM (phase change materials) and vacuum insulation panels to keep temperature-sensitive packages within defined temperature ranges.

Readily available at GDP (Good Distribution Practice)-compliant stations, they can maintain chilled, controlled ambient, or frozen temperatures for more than 96 hours.

TNT provides the boxes on a one-way rental basis, transports the temperature-sensitive materials, and takes the empty boxes back after delivery to the receiver. The receivers can be hospitals, clinics, physicians, manufacturing or pharmaceutical distribution locations.

This allows healthcare manufacturers to outsource the end-to-end management of packaging, conditioning, transport and return logistics to one global transport integrator.

TNT industry marketing director for healthcare, Cathy O’Brien says: “Reusing phase change material shippers can lower the cost of quality compliance, whilst reducing risk in the cold chain. With Medpak VI°C, we answer the need for balance between quality and cost, which our customers in the life science and health industry are looking for.”

Healthcare is a priority industry for TNT’s transformation and turnaround strategy Outlook.