Friday, March 22, 2013

Logistics Group Cheers Wine Buffs with Express Freight Services at ProWein Fair

French Exports to Benefit from Shorter Lead Times
Shipping News Feature

FRANCE – GERMANY - WORLDWIDE – Whereas most wines benefit from a little ageing most wholesales and consumers demand prompt service and a new in-house express pick-up service to be launched at the ProWein trade fair in Düsseldorf (March 24 to 26) by logistics group DB Schenker aims to shorten the lead time between wineries and export platforms for high quality French wines. The company says that using its system the valuable and sensitive cargo is less affected by variations in temperature and will ship more rapidly from its ocean and air freight hubs.

Whether it’s Bordeaux or Beaujolais, from the Loire or Provence, the wine is protected in special insulated-roof trailers as soon as it is picked up by DB Schenker prior to transfer at the group’s heat-insulated freight depots where the wine is then stuffed into 15°C refrigerated ocean freight containers ready for export or moved directly into the air cargo supply chain. Schenker is currently expanding its temperature controlled air freight options by increasing the density of its network of QEP accredited locations.

For exports to China, now the world's most important market for French wine plus those destined Japan, Korea, Australia and the US, a new LCL (Less Than Container Load) groupage service is also available, using refrigerated containers. The use of these containers also helps to avoid changes in temperature during the voyage across the world's oceans. There are also plans to consolidate shipments of wine and spirits from neighbouring Switzerland, Germany, Spain and northern Italy. Schenker claim only very few freight forwarders can operate this kind of dedicated service for wine.

Schenker says that its extensive French network with one hundred offices, including in all the major wine-producing regions, and an own organisation for national procurement and distribution ensuring close proximity to the customer, it is in an almost unique position to launch such a targeted service. The technology to actually determine the ‘vital signs’ of any container can be achieved via the ‘Smartbox’ range where five options offer customers the opportunity to monitor global freight shipments, and documenting the temperature in the container.

The premium option enables real-time monitoring via the internet, using GPS coordinates. Parameters such as temperature, humidity, acceleration force, movement, vibration and inclination angle are continuously monitored whilst the device also reports any attempt to open the container.