Since the beginning of the Corona crisis, Munichbased logistics service provider GROUP7 has transported 30 million masks and 1 million protective suits. The main recipients of the medical equipment are German authorities, which amongst other things ensure the supply to the hospitals. “Since mid-March, war-like conditions have been prevailing on the air freight market with very volatile prices. We were only able to ensure deliveries because, in addition to the Belly Freight contingents, we also have pre-booked capacities for aircraft charters”, explains Günther Jocher, Managing Director of GROUP7.
Delivery of 500,000 suits through the Munich branch office
In the past four weeks, the Munich branch alone delivered 500,000 protective suits, which was the equivalent of 557 pallets or 8,912 boxes. The suits were delivered in batches of 58,000, 225,000, 100,000 and 117,000 suits to the recipients in Munich on a weekly basis. GROUP7 routed the transport by airfreight via Shanghai and Frankfurt / Hahn or from Shanghai via Liège to Munich. Some of the shipments rolled from China to Germany by train. "Our logistics warehouses in Munich and Kelsterbach near Frankfurt are also involved in services such as sorting the cartons into the five size categories, foiling and delivery in the large-scale project," explains Ralph Eder, Branch Manager Air and Sea Freight at GROUP7 in Munich.
Logistics with police protection
In addition to the shortages in airfreight capacities, there is a security problem for the goods. “From the arrival of our medical equipment at the airport in Frankfurt / Hahn or Munich, special police officers are available for certain sub-projects to escort the goods safely to their destination. For us, this naturally means additional coordination tasks - and makes us aware of the responsibility that we have”, says Jocher. The tight time frames are another challenge. "Despite national holidays such as Good Friday or Corpus Christi, our customers expect deliveries on those days nonetheless, because the hospitals obviously cannot take a break", Ralph Eder adds. In the next week, GROUP7 is expecting five more containers via train, carrying more protective suits from China.