May 17, 2020

Ice cool courier transport a rather unusual cargo

DHL
Ernest Shackleton
Antarctic
Global Forwarding
Freddie Pierce
2 min
The whisky travelled in a temperature controlled environment
Follow @Ella_Copeland Freight specialists DHL global forwarding took on a rather unusual cargo recently, returning three bottles of rare 1986 Mackinlay...

Freight specialists DHL global forwarding took on a rather unusual cargo recently, returning three bottles of rare 1986 Mackinlay’S Rare Old Highland Malt Whisky across the equator from Scotland to New Zealand.

The whisky, which is almost 120 years old, was left behind in Antarctica by the British Explorer Ernest Shackleton after a failed expedition in 1909. Excavated in 2010, three cases were found by conservators working for the Antarctic Heritage Trust of New Zealand, where one crate was flown to New Zealand and carefully thawed, and three bottles of the historic whisky were flown to Scotland to be analysed by Whyte and Mackay, who now own the Mackinlay brand.

“We spent weeks planning this operation, investigating various different travels options and routes to get it from Scotland to New Zealand. Having been buried in the Antarctic ice for more than 100 years, the whisky is extremely precious and delicate, which gave us the opportunity to show our expertise in shipping valuable and delicate cargo”, said Alan Davis, Regional Director, Air Freight Scotland, DHL Global Forwarding.

The whisky had to be specially packed for the entire journey. It then travelled in a secure container via Dubai on to Christchurch, New Zealand, where DHL transported the whisky back to a secure facility in Christchurch before its return to Antarctica.

“We chose DHL for this shipment because we’ve had excellent service from them to date and we trust them with our high value shipments. This is a unique project, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, so it’s important we got it right,” said Hazel Clark, Customer Operations International Team Leader, Whyte & Mackay.  

Explorer Ernest Shackleton had taken several cases of the whisky on his expedition to Antarctica in 1907, then left them behind when his expedition failed to reach the South Pole. 

Share article

Jun 8, 2021

DHL Claim Multi-Sector Collaboration Key to Fighting COVID

DHL
Supplychain
COVID19
Logistics
3 min
Global logistics leader DHL’s new white paper highlights what supply chain professionals have learned one year into the pandemic

Since January, global logistics leader DHL has distributed more than 200 million doses of the COVID vaccine to 120+ countries around the globe. While the US and UK recently rolled out immunisation plans to most citizens, countries with less developed infrastructure still desperately need more doses. In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which currently has one of the highest per-capita immunisation rates, the government set up storage facilities to cover domestic and international demand. But storage, as we’ve learned, is little help if you can’t transport the goods.

 

This is where logistics leaders such as DHL make their impact. The company built over 50 new partnerships, bilateral and multilateral, to collaborate with pharmaceutical and private sector firms. With more than 350 DHL centres pressed into service, the group operated 9,000+ flights to ship the vaccine where it needed to go. 


 

Public-Private Partnerships

With new pandemic knowledge, DHL just released its “Revisiting Pandemic Resilience” white paper, which examined the role of logistics and supply chain companies in handling COVID-19. As Thomas Ellman, Head of Clinical Trials Logistics at DHL, said: “The past one year has highlighted the importance of logistics and supply chain management to manage the pandemic, ensure business continuity and protect public health. It has also shown us that together we are stronger”. 

 

Multisector partnerships, DHL said, enabled rapid, effective vaccine distribution. While international scientists developed a vaccine in record time—five times faster than any other vaccine in history—manufacturers ramped up production and logistics teams rolled out distribution three times faster than expected. When commercial routes faced backups, logistics operators worked with military officers to transport vaccines via helicopters and boats. 

 

In the UAE, the public-private HOPE Consortium distributed billions of COVID-19 doses to its civilians as well as other countries in need by partnering with commercial organisations such as DHL. For the first time, apropo for an unprecedented pandemic, logistics companies made strong connections with public health and government.

 

“While the race against the virus continues, leveraging the power of such collaborations and data analytics will be key”, said Katja Busch, Chief Commercial Officer DHL and Head of DHL Customer Solutions & Innovation. “We need to remain prepared for high patient and vaccine volumes, maintain logistics infrastructure and capacity, while planning for seasonal fluctuations by providing a stable and well-equipped platform for the years to come”. 


 

How Do We Sustain Immunisation? 

By the end of 2021, experts estimate that we need approximately 10 billion doses of vaccines—many of which will be shipped to areas of the world, such as India, South Africa, and Brazil, that lack significant infrastructure. This is perhaps the greatest divide between countries that have rolled out successful immunisation programmes and those that have not. As Busch noted, “the UAE’s significant investments in creating robust air, sea, and land infrastructure facilitated logistics and vaccine distribution, helping us keep supply chains resilient”. 

 

Neither is the novel coronavirus a one-time affair. If predictions hold, COVID will be similar to seasonal colds or the flu: here to stay. When fall comes around each year, governments will need to vaccinate the world as quickly as possible to ensure long-term immunisation against the virus. This time, logistics companies must be better prepared. 


Yet global immunisation, year after year, is no small order. To keep reinfection rates low and slow the spread of COVID, governments will likely need 7-9 billion annual doses of the vaccine to meet that mark. And if DHL’s white paper is any judge of success, multi-sector supply chain partnerships will set the gold standard.

Share article