Continental Airlines Cargo, the first US airline to offer a structured cold chain product, has now become the first airline to be accredited as a Qualified Envirotainer Provider.
Accreditation under the Qualified Envirotainer Provider Training and Quality program (QEP) is formal recognition that Continental Airlines employs industry-recognized best practices when managing shipments using Envirotainer’s temperature-controlled air cargo containers. Envirotainer launched the program at the end of 2006 after consultation with leading healthcare companies that wanted to define those service providers most capable of ensuring the integrity of their temperature-sensitive shipments.
Under the terms of the accreditation program, airline and freight forwarder participants must demonstrate how their quality system ’ including training, procedures and audits ’ complies with the QEP program standards. These are based on both the industry and Envirotainer’s best practices.
‘This widely recognized accreditation tells our customers around the world that CO’s ClimateSecure products offer the highest handling quality available in the industry,’ says Mark Mohr, Continental Cargo’s Manager of Product Development and Specialty Sales. ‘What’s more, our customers are rewarding our quality handling with increased business including non-Pharma commodities such as specialty flowers and frozen lemon juice.’
According to the airline, Continental Cargo’s ClimateSecure product offerings are now a million dollar business with 2008 on target to be yet another record year.
Envirotainer has so far audited and accredited Continental Airlines’ stations in Houston, Newark and San Francisco. The airline has also made a commitment to roll-out the QEP program at other major global stations, including Buenos Aires, Amsterdam, Tokyo-Narita, London, Milan and Sao Paulo.
Thomas Persson, CEO of Envirotainer, said: ‘This is a significant achievement by Continental Airlines Cargo. The airline is clearly committed to being a leading provider of cold chain services and we are proud that Envirotainer’s containers and accreditation program underpin its offering to the global market.’