Panalpina’s Brussels facility certified for Good Distribution Practice

by Canadian Shipper

Brussels, Belgium– Panalpina’s operations at Brussels airport are the latest to obtain official GDP (Good Distribution Practice) certification. The Good Distribution Practice sets standards for transportation and storage of medicinal products for human use, including levels of temperature, hygiene, pressure etc.

Having not only fully GDP compliant but also officially GDP certified facilities at strategic locations around the globe, is part of the company’s strategy to service its growing customer base in the healthcare industry, said a company release.

Healthcare is one of Panalpina’s fastest growing business sectors, serving both pharmaceutical companies and medical device manufacturers. Panalpina said it is one of the world’s top five supply chain service providers for the healthcare industry today and the business accounts for around 5% of the company’s revenues.

Panalpina’s newly GDP certified facility at Brussels airport has a dedicated area for storing pharmaceuticals in transit. Human (and veterinary) medicines can either be stored at between 2°C and 8°C or between 15°C and 25°C. The temperatures are constantly monitored and temperature sensitive cargo is handled by trained Panalpina personnel only. A special customer service desk coordinates and oversees the cross-docking and interim storage of the valuable goods.

The company currently operates 14 facilities (Centers of Excellence) worldwide and expects to have 22 by the end of 2014 where the company is fully GDP compliant.

“In Brussels, we were not content with being GDP compliant,” says Peter Herling, Managing Director for Belgium and The Netherlands. “As in the case of Schiphol Airport, we wanted to take it one step further and achieve GDP certification by an official body, in this case the Belgian FAMHP.”

Panalpina’s operation at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport was already officially GDP certified in October 2011. The company’s operations at the Cargo Center of Luxembourg’s Findel Airport were the first to obtain official GDP certification in June 2010. Next in line for certification is Panalpina’s US air freight hub in Huntsville, Alabama.

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