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FedEx rolls out new option for healthcare shippers

By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
January 25, 2011

FedEx this week said it has rolled out a new service, entitled, FedEx Deep Frozen Shipping Solution, which it said is an end-to-end service for shipping temperature-sensitive healthcare products around the world.

Company officials said that this new offering uses liquid nitrogen dry vapor technology that maintains a temperature of below -150 degrees Celsius for up to 10 days using the CryoPort Express Dry Shipper from CryoPort Inc. in Los Angeles.

A FedEx spokesperson said the company elected to go this route, because its healthcare customers were requesting an alternative to dry ice, which is hazardous and results in shipments being labeled as “dangerous goods.”

“Dry ice is classified as a dangerous good when shipped via air, and that creates a lot of complexities for the shipper,” said the spokesperson. “We also wanted to identify more environmentally-friendly ways to ship deep frozen goods, and this was an answer to that.”

In terms of how this new service works, FedEx explained that customers place orders online through a customized FedEx portal, and FedEx provides the pre-conditioned container to the customer to load their temperature-sensitive product. And they said that FedEx then delivers the container to its final destination while actively monitoring the shipment and intervening if needed during transit, followed by FedEx picking up the container and returning it for refurbishing.

“The elimination of dry ice is a huge benefit to shippers,” said the spokesperson. “They don’t have to stock materials, train employees on handling a dangerous good, etc. Also, the length of time this technology keeps the item frozen gives customers a greater peace of mind in the event there are unforeseen delays in transit. Dry ice sublimates after approximately 72 hours, while this solution keeps the temperature for up to 10 days.
Also, another factor that gives customers peace of mind is that security is strong with FedEx. We not only maintain custodial control, but we also proactively monitor all shipments using this service, alerting the customer to any delays or problems in transit.”

When asked how many customers would be using this new service, the spokesperson declined to provide an exact number, saying instead that many of its healthcare customers are looking forward to using it.

And in terms of the competitive benefits it provides for FedEx she said that the healthcare industry is very important to FedEx and innovations like this show its healthcare customers FedEx is serious about their business and listening to what they need.

If FedEx can offer them a better solution to dry ice that eases their peace of mind while also being environmentally sustainable, we believe we can continue earning their
loyalty and business, the spokesperson explained.

About the Author

Jeff Berman headshot
Jeff Berman
Group News Editor

Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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