British Airways and Iberia’s cargo division IAG has become the first airline to be awarded accreditation under new EU Good Distribution Practices (GDP) guidelines. The EU published its updated guidelines on GDP in November 2013 and following an inspection by the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), the airline IAG Cargo has been granted GDP and Wholesale Distribution Authorisation (WDA) for medicinal products.
Alan Dorling, global head of pharmaceuticals & life sciences at IAG Cargo, commented: “The authorisation is testament to the significant investments we have made in our dedicated people and our temperature controlled infrastructure facilities and capabilities, in addition to continuous product development and training to improve our customer experience. “It is welcome third party recognition that IAG Cargo has become the diamond standard for the transportation of medicines worldwide and underscores our global leadership in this fast-growing market.”
In order to be accredited full GDP and WDA, the company – formed by the merger of British Airways World Cargo and Iberia Cargo in 2011 – built a temperature controlled airside facility at London Heathrow, equipped with a three layer 24 hour reporting system.
“Our robust quality management system and quality training was delivered to over 100 operational and warehouse personnel at London Heathrow’s Premia and Constant Climate Centre facilities which handle the product shipments on a daily basis,” Doring explained. Premia and Constant Climate are products within IAG’s portfolio focused on the pharma industry’s needs.