How Do Cold Chain Logistics Impact Global Biopharmaceutical Distribution?

Three workers in warm apparel loading packages into a freezing warehouse

[This is the third of four briefs covering the state of cold chain logistics.]

Due to the sensitive compositions of medicines and vaccinations, special care needs to be taken both in the manufacturing and supply chain processes. Pharmaceuticals are required to be manufactured in rigorously sanitized clean rooms, and their distribution needs to be equally as stringent. Cold chain logistics plays an integral role in maintaining the freshness and efficiency of drugs.

  • 107% — the increased amount of pharmaceuticals transported globally via air freight between 2006 and 2016. In 2006, the amount was 265 metric tons, in 2016 the amount was 549 metric tons.
  • 99% — the increased amount of pharmaceuticals transported globally via ocean freight between 2006 and 2016. In 2006, the amount was 2,731 metric tons; in 2016 the amount was 5,437.
  • 86 metric tons — the amount of pharmaceuticals exported via air transport by the US between January and August of 2017.
  • 73 metric tons — the amount of pharmaceuticals imported via air transport by the US between January and August of 2017.
  • $416 billion — the projected 2022 growth for global biopharmaceutical cold chain product sales.
  • $18.6 billion — the projected 2022 growth for global biopharmaceutical cold chain logistics spending.

As medicine becomes more widely available across the globe, the demand for a more expansive cold supply chain will continue to grow.

Image Credit: Kokliang / Shutterstock.com

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