The global pharmaceutical industry is one of the highest value sectors in the logistics business. The industry’s biggest challenge is delivering life science products and vaccines in perfect condition to the end users, the hospitals and patients. There are serious concerns among manufacturers about the supply chain’s integrity and it is generally agreed that cutting costs is adding to the considerable strain. The manufacturers of pharmaceutical products hold the responsibility for their products being in perfect condition. However, the lack of specialised skill and training within the cool chain was one of the factors causing problems as well as lack of transparency and communication.
The exposure of all perishable products, especially pharma, to extreme temperatures, hot or cold, continues to result in substantial loss of usable products at the delivery point. Sebastiaan Scholte of the Cool Chain Association (CCA) comments that currently losses are running at up to 20% and that the airlines, logistics companies and handlers need to work closer together in order to improve this situation. This problem of temperature extremes, coupled with solar radiation is causing some manufacturers to abandon the speed of air transport for the slower, but less volatile, sea freight