Mastering Third Party Logistics (3PL) In Cold Chain

May 13, 2024

Preserving temperature-sensitive goods is crucial in supply chain integrity, and the delivery of safe to consume product. The cold chain ensures product safety during shipping, transportation and storage. From pharmaceuticals to food products, demand for reliable 3PL cold chain solutions is on the rise, and is projected to reach a size of US$ 1,262.5 billion by 2032, up from US$ 322.1 billion in 2023, at a CAGR of 16.39% during the forecast period 2024–2032.

As a regional trade, commerce, and logistics hub, the State of Qatar recognizes the need for robust cold chain infrastructure. The Qatar Freight Master Plan (QFMP) – which was announced in February 2024 by the Ministry of Transport – emphasizes this momentum. Aligned with the Third Qatar National Development Strategy (2024-2030), the QFMP aims to position Qatar as a global hub for shipping; advancing the objectives of Qatar National Vision 2030.

Stringent regulations and standards shape Qatar’s cold chain market, ensuring product integrity. Amid progress and innovation, Qatar’s cold chain market offers opportunity. With ongoing investments, Qatar is set for cold chain sector growth, aligning with its vision for a prosperous future.

GWC’s Group CEO, Mr. Ranjeev Menon, stated: “At GWC, we pride ourselves on our expertise in 3PL cold chain logistics. Our comprehensive approach encompasses state-of-the-art infrastructure, advanced technology, rigorous quality control measures, and highly trained and accredited personnel. We offer end-to-end solutions tailored to the unique requirements of each client and their specific cold chain needs.”

Understanding the cold chain

The cold chain refers to the uninterrupted series of storage and distribution activities that maintain a product’s desired temperature range. This process is critical for preserving the quality, efficacy, and safety of temperature-sensitive goods, including food, pharmaceuticals, and vaccines. Any deviation from the specified temperature can compromise the integrity of these products, leading to spoilage, reduced effectiveness, or even safety risks for consumers.

Modern facilities

Central to GWC’s cold chain capabilities are modern facilities equipped with temperature-controlled storage and handling capabilities. These facilities are meticulously designed to maintain precise temperature conditions, ensuring optimal storage for a wide range of temperature-sensitive products. Whether it’s frozen, chilled, or ambient storage, these facilities adhere to the highest industry standards to safeguard product integrity.

Qatar’s first privately-owned 3PL pharmaceutical storage and distribution spans a 25,000m² facility with temperature-controlled, refrigerated, and frozen storage chambers, built and equipped to the latest industry specifications. This facility can store temperature-sensitive products anywhere between -70°C and 25°C across more than 35,000 pallet positions. In addition, GWC’s existing countrywide infrastructure includes vaccine and sample transportation strategies that ensure temperature-controlled transportation, labelling, and tagging.

Advanced temperature monitoring

Temperature monitoring is a critical aspect of cold chain management – and GWC leverages advanced technology to monitor temperatures in real-time. IoT systems are equipped with sensors that continuously monitor temperature levels, providing instant alerts in case of any deviation from the prescribed range. This proactive approach allows GWC to swiftly address any issues and maintain the integrity of the cold chain.

Stringent quality assurance

Quality assurance sits at the core of cold chain operations. GWC adheres to stringent quality control protocols at every stage of the supply chain, from receiving point to final delivery. GWC’s quality assurance team conducts regular audits and inspections to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements and industry best practices. By maintaining the highest standards of quality, GWC instils clients’ confidence and provide assurance that their products are in safe hands.

Cold transportation

Transportation is a critical link in the cold chain and GWC offers specialised transportation solutions to ensure the seamless movement of temperature-sensitive goods. With the largest transport fleet in Qatar under its command, specialized trucks are dedicated to cold transportation. These refrigerated and insulated vehicles are capable of maintaining precise temperature conditions during transit. Whether short-haul or long-haul transportation, drivers are trained to handle sensitive cargo with utmost care and attention to detail.

Cold chain solutions for major sporting events

Qatar’s renowned position as a sports hub has provided numerous opportunities for GWC to flourish on the global stage. During the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 – where GWC was the Official Logistics Provider – it was imperative to deliver a host of cold chain solutions for a range of clients, including the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, FIFA, commercial affiliates, and the media. Cold chain logistics solutions played a central role in ensuring the seamless transportation and storage of food and beverages, to maintain their quality and safety standards. This involved extensive planning and coordination efforts between stakeholders, including tournament organisers, suppliers, logistics partners, and regulatory authorities.

Empowering Growth
Entrusting cold chain logistics to a 3PL provider unlocks numerous benefits for businesses. With expertise in shipping, transportation, warehousing, inventory management and distribution; companies can prioritize core competencies such as product innovation and customer relationships. This strategic partnership fosters competitiveness, innovation, and accelerated growth, ensuring seamless operations, value addition and customer satisfaction.

 

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