Cold chain logistics refers to a shipping process where the cargo needs to be kept at a cold temperature throughout the entire process. Generally, biotech and pharmaceutical companies have to follow a strict cold chain logistics cycle to move high-value, temperature-sensitive products from lab to lab or down the supply chain. Not only are the products themselves usually classified as hazardous by the DOT, but the packaging materials such as dry ice are also considered dangerous and are regulated accordingly. There are many considerations that corporations need to make in cold chain logistics – here are a few of the key items.
Following Federal, State, and Local Regulations
As with all other hazmat shipping processes, cold chain logistics requires a delicate and thorough understanding of the regulations surrounding a particular shipment. What are the means by which the cargo is to be transported? What kinds of documents will you have to fill out? What are correct labels, markings, and placards that need to be affixed to the packaging and what is the proper manner in which to do so? Knowing the right answers to these questions and planning accordingly will protect your company from liability and fines, as well as protect workers, handlers, and the general public from the dangers that may be inherent in your shipment.
In addition to following all relevant rules and regulations, cold chain logistics also concerns itself with the packaging – specifically, how to keep the cargo at a given temperature from point A to point B. When choosing a shipment method, it’s worth keeping two factors in mind: the temperature requirement and the duration of transportation. A knowledgeable shipper can use this information to choose the proper materials and cooling agents for a given cargo to ensure that it arrives at its destination safely.
Working with a TSA-Approved Courier
The TSA is authorized to open or x-ray any shipment as it passes through customs or security. If you’re shipping a product by air, there’s a chance your shipment may need to undergo this inspection. However, to minimize the risk that your cargo is compromised en route, it’s worthwhile to work with a courier that is specially trained and audited in TSA regulations.
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