The IATA airline association has awarded Fraport AG renewed “CEIV Pharma” certification for exemplary handling of time-critical and temperature-sensitive pharmaceutical goods at Frankfurt Airport (FRA). In 2018, Fraport received its first certification under IATA’s Center of Excellence for Independent Validators in Pharmaceutical Logistics (CEIV) programme. In a recent follow-up audit, Fraport has been recertified for another three years – in recognition of FRA’s systematic and seamless processes for handling pharmaceuticals. IATA developed CEIV as a global standard to provide airlines, airport operators, handling companies and forwarding agents with internationally-recognised guidelines for the handling and transport of pharmaceutical goods.
“Securing recertification underscores the strong performance and reliability of our processes, equipment and systems deployed for handling sensitive pharmaceutical products,” comments Siegfried Pasler, Head of Ground Services, Fraport AG. “This CEIV recognition also encourages our dedicated handling teams during these challenging times and further strengthens Frankfurt Airport’s position as Europe’s leading pharma hub. During the coronavirus pandemic, we have clearly demonstrated the vital role that airfreight plays in supplying the world’s population. Frankfurt Airport also serves as a key partner in the distribution of vaccines, by delivering reliable services such as the seamless transport of vaccines on our airport ramp.”
Because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, this year’s certification process was conducted entirely as a virtual audit. The IATA auditor reached their decision with the aid of documents and video clips provided in advance, followed up by virtual interviews. “The circumstances for the recertification were unusual for everyone involved. But thanks to the excellent preparatory work, we were able to give the auditor a realistic look at our processes,” Pasler explains.
The audit assessed various areas including equipment, IT services, defined processes, and training programmes. Fraport’s decades of experience in ramp handling have certainly paid off. Furthermore, the 20 state-of-the-art temperature-controlled transporters that the airport operator currently uses for transporting goods across the apron also convinced the auditor. Fraport’s two newest refrigerated transporters – designed specifically for pharmaceuticals – allow the inside temperature inside to be controlled precisely in the minus 20 to plus 30 degrees Celsius range. In total, Frankfurt Airport currently has about 13,500sqm of temperature-controlled handling space. Some 120,000 metric tons of pharmaceuticals, vaccines and other medical goods are handled at the FRA global hub yearly.