Turkish Cargo has been awarded IATA's Center of Excellence for Independent Validators (CEIV) certification in pharmaceutical logistics at its Istanbul hub, bolstering the company's ability to offer its customers the most reliable means of transport. When it comes to handling in the air cargo sector, there are strict rules that have to be followed. As an air freighter, speed of delivery, a wide network and safety are some aspects of Turkish Cargo's efficiency.

IATA CEIV Pharma certification is recognised as one of the most important indicators of rigour in the process for pharmaceuticals shipments. The successful completion of IATA's CEIV Pharma certification programme by Turkish Cargo reinforces its commitment to meeting the high standards set by the pharmaceutical industry and legislators globally in the transportation of delicate, and extremely temperature and time-critical consignments such as vaccines, biotechnological products, diagnostic samples, precision healthcare devices, organs and tissues. The company revised each step of its process in order to ensure maximum reliability and security throughout shipment. Through being certified by IATA CEIV Pharma, Turkish Cargo's Istanbul cargo hub is fully compliant with all applicable pharmaceutical standards, enabling it to increase transportation of pharmaceutical products by air.

Transport hub

Geographically, Turkish Cargo's base at Istanbul Ataturk Airport is in a very strategic location. The natural hub status of Istanbul enables the company to provide rapid connection between pharmaceuticals producers and consumers in Asia. Turkish Airlines has freighter services to many countries and continues to open new passenger routes. Turkish Cargo carries out the airline's cargo operations in line with special schedules established for cold-chain logistics and ensures the punctual transport of these supplies by passenger or cargo aircraft. The key differentiator of Turkish Cargo is its network, which enables customers to send their pharmaceuticals shipments to more than 100 countries.

Tailored to pharma

The pharmaceutical industry is a fast-growing one in the global market. Aware of the huge potential of the pharmaceutical market, which continues to grow day by day, Turkish Cargo has made highly promising investments to improve its pharmaceuticals shipping services and redefined SOP for the pharmaceuticals. The company has inaugurated a new 3,500m² special cargo storage area and 42 separate special cargo rooms with high quality standards, including temperature-controlled storage units designated for drug, vaccine and healthcare shipments.

Top-of-the-line temperature control

All of the company's temperature-controlled storage units are monitored for temperature and humidity levels using an online tracking system. Pharmaceuticals are stored safely in units suited to the type of cargo and under the temperature range requested by the sender. Pharmaceuticals and healthcare cargo containing medicines in its temperaturecontrolled units are then transported from storage to the aircraft before take-off. If requested by the consigner, temperature-sensitive pharmaceuticals can be protected from outside temperature changes in line with 'Instruction on the Use of Thermal Blankets'. Moreover, through its partnership with active temperature-controlled container provider Envirotainer, Turkish Cargo is able to prevent cargo from being exposed to fluctuating temperatures during flights.

The company has also started providing a thermal dolly service, where an active temperature-controlled dolly is used for the transportation of temperature-sensitive cargo in between temperature-controlled rooms and aircraft, and Turkish Cargo plans to expand this service through 2017.

Expertise and innovation

Turkish Cargo has developed its local pharma-handling expertise and a pharma mindset through training its employees on pharmaceutical handling. All staff involved in the transport of cargo participate in international and in-house training and certification programmes. In addition, the company provides refresher training.

The company will continue to provide technologydriven logistics solutions to individual customers and major corporations.