Pharma plat­ter: Serve chilled

China Daily (Canada) - - HONG KONG - By EMMA DAI in Hong Kong

em­madai@chi­nadai­lyhk.com

Ex­press ser­vice sounds like a sim­ple busi­ness — just car­ry­ing things from one spot to an­other.

But in the mod­ern world, this could in­volve a lot of in­no­va­tion and con­form­ing to lat­est busi­ness trends.

“One of the things we are see­ing as a growth area, and re­ally an ex­pres­sion of the chang­ing de­mo­graph­ics, is the growth in health­care. We are very fo­cused right now on de­vel­op­ing so­lu­tions for health­care busi­ness,” Karen Red­ding­ton, pres­i­dent of FedEx Ex­press Asia Pa­cific, told China Daily. “The health­care in­dus­try of­ten has spe­cial de­mands in pack­ag­ing.”

“We in­tro­duced one-stop health­care so­lu­tions in China this Jan­uary. With our tem­per­a­ture-con­trolled pack­ages, some­body in China can ship their tem­per­a­ture-sen­si­tive items out to the rest of the world and be con­fi­dent that the ship­ment is go­ing to stay within the re­quired tem­per­a­ture range,” Red­ding­ton ex­plained.

The FedEx Cold Ship­ping Pack­age is able to keep ship­ments, such as medicine and blood sam­ples, at a con­sis­tent 2 de­grees Cel­sius to 8 de­grees Cel­sius en­vi­ron­ment for up to 96 hours, or four days.

Other pack­ages can also pro­vide dif­fer­ent tem­per­a­ture­con­trolled en­vi­ron­ments rang­ing from 25 de­grees Cel­sius to as low as mi­nus 150 de­grees Cel­sius. “What we also do for some cus­tomers is mon­i­tor their ship­ments dur­ing the trip,” Red­ding­ton added.

“If we see a tem­per­a­ture ex­cur­sion, we have the op­por­tu­nity to in­ter­vene, repack and send it on its way again. For very sen­si­tive ship­ments, we pro­vide var­i­ous types of op­tions.”

The World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion de­fines “tem­per­a­ture ex­cur­sion” as an event when a time-tem­per­a­ture sen­si­tive ship­ment is ex­posed to tem­per­a­tures out­side the range or ranges pre­scribed for stor­age and/or trans­port.

Red­ding­ton added that health­care so­lu­tions have been “very pop­u­lar” in the US and Ja­pan.

“We rolled it out in China be­cause we saw de­mand in the mar­ket. We ex­pect the ser­vice to be­come in­creas­ingly pop­u­lar.”

Tar­get­ing users such as phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal de­vel­op­ers, the ser­vice could also be used for other per­ish­able com­modi­ties such as cut flow­ers.

“You could risk a lot if you don’t have a re­li­able ser­vice provider. Right pack­ag­ing and han­dling could make sig­nif­i­cant dif­fer­ence to your busi­ness,” Red­ding­ton noted.

PARKER ZHENG / CHINA DAILY

Karen Red­ding­ton, pres­i­dent of FedEx Ex­press Asia Pa­cific, says to go from vi­sion to re­al­ity in the re­gion would re­quire not only strong in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ment but also a reg­u­la­tory en­vi­ron­ment that sup­ports and en­cour­ages rapid eco­nomic growth.

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