Etihad Cargo is working hard to ensure a continuous supply of perishable goods
After continuing to grow over the past decade, the perishable goods export market has remained robust during the COVID-19 pandemic, amid strong segment demand and governments striving to secure supply. continuous in perishable products.
Etihad Cargo is well positioned to take advantage of increased demand, and with its dedicated product FreshForward, the company safely transports perishable goods such as flowers, fresh fruit, vegetables, dairy, fish and meat, while maintaining product integrity on its global network in accordance with with the latest IATA standards, international requirements, local regulations and best practices.
Despite last year’s disruptions linked to COVID-19, the transport of perishable goods remains high, according to Fabrice Panza, head of global cold chain solutions at Etihad Cargo.
“It’s true, overall you should have faced a decrease in capacity (due to COVID-19), but when you look at the numbers you also see that perishables continued to be transported at a high volume. high for all airlines, ”said Panza.
With a high volume of product being transported, FreshForward prides itself on a consistent and in-depth review of the factors and best practices in the cold chain process that affect product maintenance.
“When we look at perishables, we look at the type of packaging to be shipped; there are quite a few requirements depending on the product itself and the nature of the good, ”said Panza.
But it is not only a question of guaranteeing the best maintenance of the product.
“It’s all about speed and being quick in the process,” said Panza. “It’s about efficiency and productivity, it’s about making sure the temperature is correct while operating with different products, and it’s about providing the right environment and the right conditions so that, from the point of view from the point of view of the product, the integrity of the product is respected. “
And to control the right environment, FreshForward has the advantage of high quality equipment.
“We have a very young fleet; the facilities are very modern, and everything is equipped with temperature control devices. This means that even during the flight we are able to provide the right temperature at all times, ”said Panza.
“An important step for us has been to recognize all of these elements, such as the time taken before and after transporting food, they are all part of a process that needs to be standardized to a high level, and that is why we entered the IATA CEIV threshing certification in 2019. “
FreshForward has also adopted strict food safety management protocols under the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) methodology. As a result, FreshForward maintains its IATA Center of Excellence for Independent Validator (CEIV) certification for fresh produce.
As a result, Etihad Cargo is the first carrier in the Middle East, and the second in the world, to receive the IATA CEIV Fresh certificate.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is a global trade association between airlines that created the Center of Excellence for Independent Validator (CEIV) accreditation.
The certificate establishes standards, regulations and guidelines for the international and domestic transport of perishable goods, ensuring that safety and specific product needs are met.
Receiving an IATA CEIV certification is a huge achievement for any airline, especially considering how new FreshForward is. Currently, there are still very few established airlines that can claim this title.
Designed around dedication, priority attention throughout the supply chain and high quality management processes, FreshForward provides a highly specialized service with real-time monitoring of temperature environments.
Other key product features include expedited handling on the ramp at all points and reduced exposure to the ambient shipping environment. Through Etihad’s dedicated perishable goods center in Abu Dhabi, ground crew members serve the inbound and outbound perishable goods markets to provide priority transport from aircraft to temperature-controlled storage and vice versa to maintain the integrity of the cold chain.
Maintaining product integrity across the network is a key objective of the Etihad Cargo team, and through its own storage facilities, those of its partners and through the use of active and hybrid containers, Etihad provides temperature-controlled storage and transport conditions throughout the journey. , with temperature ranges from + 2 ° C to + 8 ° C, + 15 ° C to + 25 ° C and + 2 ° C to + 25 ° C.
Etihad can also provide specific equipment services and solutions upon request, such as dry ice packaging, active container rental and door-to-door services in the United Arab Emirates on refrigerated trucks.
While Etihad Cargo carries perishable items through its global network, its main trade routes are from North and South Asia and India, to the Middle East and Europe, while the routes also meet at the request of Europe and Africa to the Middle East and Asia.
With such a great distance between Australia and many of its consumers, it is important that the transport services used are able to meet the volume of products being exported.
“The Australian market is mainly made up of fresh meat, fruit and dairy products; FreshForward is really able to handle this volume, while maintaining the integrity and quality of the product. This is vital for the quality of the Australian product, ”said Colin Nicholls, Regional Director of Etihad Cargo – Australasia.
Along with a focus on maintaining the quality of the perishable goods it carries, FreshForward is changing traditional air travel with increased attention and support for the companies they fly for. Their membership in the Australian International Freight Assistance Mechanism (IFAM) program is a key example.
Created in response to COVID-19, the IFAM program is an Australian government program to support air links around the world.
In addition to helping customers provide required air transportation amid the grounding of passenger operations of many airlines, Etihad Cargo has also worked with the United Arab Emirates government food supply program to s ” ensure that national supermarkets are well stocked and restocked.
Etihad Cargo will continue to work closely with its partners to ensure they have the capacity to transport vital supplies through our global network.
FreshForward is changing the face of air travel; it’s no longer just a matter of moving products from one area to another. Especially as economies begin to recover from the pandemic, FreshForward seeks to forge partnerships and support every step of the supply chain and the industries in which they operate.