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Poseidon exposing its unique PLUG & PLAY pharma ocean-freight model in London

14th January 2019, London: After a vigorous inaugural year, the wave-parting Poseidon pharmaceutical ocean-freight network will be laying bare its unique "PLUG & PLAY" operating model at the IQPC Temperature Controlled Logistics (TCL) Conference at Twickenham Stadium, London, from 28th to 31st January 2019.

A presentation on the progress of this landmark project is taking place on the TCL Sea Freight Focus Day on Thursday 31st January 2019. Here delegates will find out how the pharmaceutical industry’s only integrated ocean freight program is starting to make a huge impact in raising standards in the long-haul transportation of high-value pharmaceutical products and ingredients.

Launched at TCL 2018, the Poseidon initiative comprises an independent network of progressive pharmaceutical manufacturers, specialist freight companies and pharma logistics suppliers working together to re-engineer the pharmaceutical cold chain process in order to and make it safer and cheaper and more sustainable. State-of-the-art thermal management and real-time shipment visibility are key factors in the Poseidon model but the real differentiator stems from its highly integrated approach, bringing together all cold-chain parties to address collaboratively the long-standing problems inherent in pharma logistics. In addition to a standard full-container-load operation, Poseidon will be trialing a flexible shared-container service during 2019 to cater for smaller consignments and provide maximum flexibility.

Alan Kennedy, Executive Director at Poseidon, explained how the program is organised: “Poseidon takes the form of a strategic supply network comprising a group of independent pharmaceutical manufacturers in conjunction with all the principal actors involved in transporting a pharma product by sea. Designed from the ground-up, it involves shippers, logistics companies, marine insurers, and product suppliers all being seated around the same table as equal partners. This up-front involvement of all the stakeholders helps create an environment of trust and teamwork.”

Effective pharmaceutical cold chain services are not only expensive to develop and utilise, but typically plagued by undesirable temperature excursions which are dangerous, costly to remedy, and in often in violation of the uncompromising legislation surrounding the distribution of pharma products. “Pharmaceuticals are easily compromised, therapeutically, through temperature mis-management during transportation, explains Kennedy. “With its goal of zero temperature excursions Poseidon aims to eliminate this risk through through a re-structure of the pharmaceutical cold chain process to make it more efficient and reliable.”

Taking the rudder at Poseidon in 2019 is Torben Weilmuenster who has been elected to chair its governing Management Group. Torben is the Global Head of Supply Chain Management at Frankfurt-based Merz Pharma GmbH & Co. KgaA. Torben will be supported by Vice Chairman Dr. Steve Brabbs, Global Technology Leader for Cold Chain Protection at DuPont.

Commenting on progress over the past year Weilmuenster said: “Poseidon is creating a stir amongst the pharma shipping community as it drives industry reform through a more joined-up approach to the movement of pharmaceutical products and ingredients. Already around 30 pharmaceutical companies and logistics providers are registered on the cloud-based Poseidon collaboration hub and we invite all active shippers of pharmaceuticals to come on board and play a part in driving this exciting venture forward.”  

During 2018 Poseidon completed Phase 1 of a large-scale ‘proof-of-concept’ undertaking. This Poseidon field validation project is the largest pharma ocean freight project of its type ever conducted and involves the rigorous monitoring of several refrigerated container-loads of high-value pharmaceutical products during both summer and winter intercontinental logistics operations embracing multiple ocean and overland stages.  Attendees at the TCL Sea Freight Focus Day will be given an insight into the results of this pilot project which was designed to thoroughly examine cold-chain processes, test-out protective packaging, and verify consignment visibility and data capture.

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Last Updated: 14-Jan-2019