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Emirates SkyCargo unveils new purpose-built pharma facility in Chicago

Emirates SkyCargo has announced it will begin handling pharmaceutical cargo at a specially built Chicago facility, with a capacity of 15,000 tonnes of pharma shipments annually.

The new facility was developed in partnership with ground handling company Maestro and has temperature controlled zones for acceptance and delivery, pharma cargo build up and break down, and storage and direct ramp access.

The 1000 sq metres facility also lies in close proximity to the ramp, meaning the cargo does not have to spend as much time in transit between the terminal and the aircraft.

“Having a dedicated facility for pharma at one of our busiest stations for pharma in our network is a big boost to our pharma handling credentials and capability,” said Nabil Sultan, Divisional Senior Vice President, Emirates SkyCargo.

“This was also a unique model wherein we worked closely with the ground handler and were involved in the planning for the facility from the very beginning,” he added.

“Using our learnings from transporting pharma across six continents, we were able to collaborate to make the new pharma facility fit for purpose.”

The dedicated Chicago facility is part of the company’s broader pharma corridors initiative, which has seen the company collaborate with ground handling partners and other local stakeholders in locations that are significant origin or destination points for pharma.

“Pharmaceutical cargo being transported by air are growing in their sophistication and complexity in terms of the strict regulations for handling and temperature control,” said Henrik Ambak, Emirates Senior Vice President, Cargo Operations Worldwide.

“We introduced the pharma corridors initiative because we wanted to expand the required high standard of handling for pharma shipments further into our network and serve markets better from origin to destination.”