Global provider of contract logistics solutions, DHL Supply Chain, is to open four new state-of-the-art storage facilities around Australia.

The healthcare-grade facilities will store and manage inventory of pharmaceuticals, medical devices, vaccines, animal health, diagnostics, and consumer health products, to support increasing demand for these products. The additional capacity will also enable DHL to efficiently manage the storage and distribution of any upcoming COVID-19 vaccines.

The new facilities in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, and Perth have a combined floor space of approximately 64,000 square metres – equivalent to nine football fields. More than 9,000 square metres will be dedicated to cold-chain products, supporting temperature ranges of 2 to 8°C.

Saul Resnick, CEO, DHL Supply Chain, Australia and New Zealand said, “The Life Sciences and Healthcare industry is one of the most heavily regulated industries, and DHL is the only 3PL in Australia to provide solutions that meet current global regulations. We have seen growing interest for our industry-leading cold storage facilities which in turn, drives better outcomes for the storage and distribution of healthcare products. Increasingly, we have also seen a growing appetite for local distribution centres to be an ongoing part of global supply chains.”

Resnick highlights the dependence of clinical trials on facilities such as DHL’s, particularly important in the current climate. “The success of clinical trials depends on effective temperature-controlled, accuracy, and end- to-end solutions that ensure cell-based pharmaceuticals are not compromised. For years, we have managed the safe and efficient delivery of millions of vaccines, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, and other healthcare products for our customers to ensure all Australians have access to the treatments they need,” said Resnick.

The facilities will be powered by a combined 2,700kW of solar power, including the company’s 1700kW urban solar plant powering its facility in New South Wales’ Horsley Park – the first of its kind in Australia. Says Resnick, “By investing in renewable energy sources, as well as a number of other initiatives, DHL Supply Chain is on track to meet our long-term goal of reducing all logistics-related emissions to zero by 2050.”

In addition to the new facilities, DHL Supply Chain will also invest in a new multi-million dollar transport management system and national control tower to support more efficient consignment planning and offer customers greater visibility of their deliveries.

Further plans to introduce a cold chain automation picking and packing solution to drive compliance and efficiency in the supply of pharmaceuticals are also underway. This project will be the first of its kind in Australia, based in New South Wales.