Schiphol Airport developing €1m early warning system for pharma shipments

Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport is developing an early warning system that will alert pharmaceutical shippers when there is a problem with their goods.

The system is being created using a €1m (US$1.07m) subsidy awarded by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO) and TKI Dinalog, the Dutch Institute for Advanced Logistics.

The funding will support data collection and monitoring of Pharma Gateway Amsterdam (PGA) shipments to identify issues, such a temperature irregularities. This data will then be used to design a model that alert shippers of the problem.

Jonas van Stekelenburg, cargo director at Schiphol Airport, said, “We are listening to shippers’ needs and working to improve transparency and cooperation in the pharma supply chain.

“Pharma shippers are asking for more visibility so they can have confidence that their sensitive cargo is being handled safely through the supply chain and find solutions if there are issues such as temperature incursions.

“This research will enable us to develop a system capable of stepping up to those challenges.”

The Schiphol Cargo Community and Cargonaut will add its performance management and alerting capabilities to the community Cloud, with Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences and Delft University of Technology completing the underlying research, contributions to the development, and measurements of the benefits for shippers and their transport suppliers.

Schiphol has teamed up with Air France KLM Cargo, Cargonaut, and PGA members for the project, which starts this month, with results expected later this year.

Marcel de Nooijer, executive vice president for Air France KLM cargo, said the pharmaceutical industry was “a leading segment within the Air France KLM Cargo strategy”.

“We are keen to improve the supply chain in collaboration with other parties in the chain, contributing to overall higher product integrity for pharmaceutical shipments,” he said.

Ferry van der Ent, director of business development at Schiphol, added, “Improving quality and transparency in the pharma supply chain is a community-wide effort, and this valuable research will help us demonstrate the service quality our community efforts achieve.”