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EVA Air Recertified For Pharmaceutical Air Cargo Operations

The carrier once again earned its CEIV Pharma certification

An EVA Air 777-300ER in Los Angeles (Photo: AirlineGeeks | Wiliam Derrickson)

This past week EVA Air and Evergreen Airline Services Corp, both part of the conglomerate Evergreen Group out of Taiwan, were recertified by the International Air Transport Association’s Center of Excellence for Independent Validators in Pharmaceutical Logistics (CEIV Pharma).

Only a few airlines carry this certification which is one of the main global standards for cold transport of high-value pharmaceuticals by air. It sets baseline trust for companies seeking to transport valuable pharmaceuticals and components across the world as part of supply chain operations.

This trust is important not only due to the high cost of the goods being shipped but also the extreme complexity that is often required to create these products. A destroyed shipment will not just cause financial harm to a pharmaceutical company but will impact timelines since it may take a lengthy period to remanufacture the product.

EVA Air’s Pharma Cargo Growth

EVA first earned this certification in 2021 and it has been of significant benefit to the airline given that its pharmaceutical cold chain transport business has been growing at an average rate of 30 percent annually since then. This recertification, required every three years, is expected to help continue this strong growth originating from both inside and outside the country of Taiwan.

The airline will be able to provide temperature-controlled pharmaceutical cargo services for import and export along with connecting services. It’s expected that Taiwan’s pharmaceutical manufacturing prowess will increase in the coming years with some companies trying to become the biomanufacturing equivalents of Taiwanese Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), the current top manufacturer of high-tech computer chips globally.

EVA Air cargo operations (Photo: EVA Air)

As a result of this recertification, EVA Air will continue its hefty investments in cold chain transport. The airline and Evergeen have overhauled existing facilities and built new ones as the business has grown.

Staff training has also been a priority for the airline. It has developed a training program and deploys staff to continually monitor cargo as it moves through the EVA network in temperature-controlled containers.

Over the past few years, EVA has shown its technical competency in the transport of pharmaceuticals requiring cold handling. The business has grown significantly and the airline played an important role in transporting COVID-19 vaccines and subsequent components across Asia.

The pharmaceutical air cargo market is lucrative for players willing to make the necessary investments to build out an entire temperature-controlled transport network. Turkish Airlines recently started making big moves in the sector with the announcement of new temperature-controlled offerings on passenger and cargo aircraft through the use of specialized containers.

For years, American Airlines has run a massive pharmaceutical cargo operation out of its hub in Philadelphia. The airline has large storage facilities that can store pharmaceutical goods at varying temperatures well below freezing.

Hemal Gosai


  • Hemal Gosai

    Hemal took his first flight at four years old and has been an avgeek since then. When he isn't working as an analyst he's frequently found outside watching planes fly overhead or flying in them. His favorite plane is the 747-8i which Lufthansa thankfully flies to EWR allowing for some great spotting. He firmly believes that the best way to fly between JFK and BOS is via DFW and is always willing to go for that extra elite qualifying mile.

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