The Cool Chain Association (CCA) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to drive improvements in the temperature-controlled supply chain.

    The MoU will focus on the safe, sustainable transport of perishables and pharmaceuticals. The associations will share feedback, experiences, knowledge and best practice.

    CCA and IATA said they also planned to develop common work programmes, including temporary task forces and round tables, for specific initiatives such as the transport of vaccines and life science products.

    Volga Dnepr

    “Both CCA and IATA have a common interest in ensuring the secure handling and transport of perishables and pharmaceuticals by means of robust standards,” said CCA’s secretary general and SkyCell’s airline partner manager Nicola Caristo [pictured above, with IATA’s head of special cargo Andrea Gruber].

    “Through this agreement we are establishing a formal basis of collaboration to better assist the global industry to improve, as well as increasing sustainability and reducing waste.

    “We will be working together to promote the implementation of methodologies and quality criteria.”

    The initiative will see representatives of both organisations attending each other’s industry meetings as observers, to present best practice and communicate the results of ongoing projects such as the CCA’s data sharing trials.

    A first step was taken on 21 October. CCA took part in IATA’s webinar on the industry’s readiness for the transportation of vaccines and life science products, which was led by IATA’s head of special cargo Andrea Gruber.

    IATA’s global head of cargo Glyn Hughes commented: “Air cargo has been critical throughout this crisis in supporting medical staff on the front line fighting Covid-19 whilst ensuring that global supply chains are maintained for the most time-sensitive products including medical and food supplies.

    “With these experiences it is evident that collaboration and alignment with industry initiatives are key elements that will transform the future of our industry.

    “This MoU between the CCA and IATA formalises an ongoing collaboration between the two organisations with the aim of better assisting the industry in improving the quality of pharmaceutical and perishable consignment handling and transportation.”