- High-tech thermal containers and boxes “made in Germany” are essential for international logistics for temperature-sensitive COVID19 diagnostic kits, drugs and vaccines.
- Currently, more than half of all Coronavirus diagnostic kits shipped internationally are transported using va-Q-tec boxes and containers.
- One of va-Q-tec’s largest customers reports promising results in experimental tests of a drug against COVID-19.
Würzburg, 19th May 2020. With its high-tech insulation boxes and containers, va-Q-tec is supporting global efforts to combat coronavirus. This globally active medium-sized company, based in Würzburg, Germany, provides reliable transport solutions for temperature-sensitive test kits as well as for urgently needed drugs. It offers both high-tech boxes and containers for international long-distance transport as well as solutions for short-distance transport on the last mile to the end customer. Demand for such temperature-control solutions during the shipping of pharmaceutical and biotech products is rising significantly during the Coronavirus crisis. This is reflected in the majority of international transports of Coronavirus diagnostic kits using the German company’s transport solutions, as such test reagents have to be transported at temperatures below -20° C.
Regional logistics for test kits “on the last mile”
va-Q-tec’s high-tech insulation boxes and containers have been playing an important role since the outbreak of the virus. Already in February, the company provided international pharmaceutical distributors with several thousand va-Q-med® boxes for the regional shipment of drugs, diagnostic kits and other temperature-sensitive products. These boxes reliably transport tests within countries all the way to the patient, while maintaining the required temperature range.
Dr. Joachim Kuhn, CEO of va-Q-tec AG, categorizes the trend as follows: “The current situation is leading to an awareness within the healthcare sector of the importance of safe global temperature-controlled supply chains. This is not a temporary phenomenon. Rather it is creating an additional dynamic within the industry, from which we – as a technology leader for energy-efficient transport solutions using vacuum insulation – can benefit medium-term. Positive practical experience with our solutions is convincing both international existing and new customers in Asia but recently also in Scandinavia.”
Global TempChain logistics for test kits
The number of international shipments of diagnostic kits has increased since the global pandemic broke out. Several million test kits – from, among others, the current largest Korean producer in the world – are meanwhile already being shipped worldwide with the help of va-Q-tec’s solutions, such as from South Korea via Germany to Brazil. Currently, more than 50% of all coronavirus test kits are transported worldwide using va-Q-tec boxes and containers. For example, the USA is currently supplied with millions of diagnostic kits every week from Europe. These logistics also entail many challenges: Due to acute global demand and reduced airfreight capacities as a consequence of airlines’ limited operations, or even complete shutdowns, airfreight logistics are very challenging. Furthermore, absolute temperature stability must be ensured during transport over several days, even in unforeseen situations and to partly remote and hot regions of the world to guarantee the tests’ functionality. va-Q-tec has very rapidly developed a special transport solution in order to also supply these difficult destinations with drugs and diagnostic kits. The solution is available at short notice, is very light and has an excellent temperature holding period: It is specially optimized for temperature-controlled logistics for drugs. For example, it can maintain the ‑20 °C temperature range required for Coronavirus diagnostic kits for 124 hours without being dependent on external energy or dry ice. Hundreds of shipments of vital cargoes have already been transported in this innovative transport solution.
Temperature controlled logistics for medicines
va-Q-tec solutions are also playing an important role in the international distribution of drugs and vaccines. One of the company’s largest customers – a US biotech company whose temperature-controlled transports have for some time now been carried out almost exclusively in the German high-performance thermal containers – is reporting promising results from experimental tests of a drug against COVID-19. This drug has already been approved for a different indication.
Dr. Joachim Kuhn, CEO of va-Q-tec AG, comments on the importance of va-Q-tec transport solutions during the coronavirus crisis: “As experts in the temperature-controlled supply chains area, we are proving that we can ensure fast and safe global logistics for vital life science products, also in times of crisis. The current CoVid-19 pandemic is once again impressively demonstrating the crucial importance of globally and locally functioning temperature-controlled logistics chains. Since the start of the pandemic, we have ensured the reliable transport of temperature-sensitive test kits both on the last transport mile to the end customer and internationally. And we are also ready to transport a vaccine or drug with our products securely and on a temperature-stable basis worldwide.”