UPS acquires a temperature-controlled ground fleet for the UK

Polar Speed offers active, temperature-controlled shipping, for pharma trading partners and direct-to-patient

One way to address the need to maintain refrigerated conditions for some pharma products is to pack them with insulation and refrigerant; another is to convey them in a powered container or vehicle. The latter is the option that UPS will now be offering to hospitals, pharmacies and even direct-to-patient in the UK, through its acquisition of Polar Speed (London).

Polar Speed utilizes a fleet of 118 actively monitored temperature-controlled vehicles for transporting both 2-8°C refrigerated and 15-25°C products in accordance with UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) guidelines. A UPS statement says that the fleet is outfitted on-board temperature recorders and alarms to alert drivers of potential temperature excursions as well as PolarTrack, an online portal linked to a satellite navigation system allowing customers to access real-time delivery status and temperature conditions of their products. The acquisition adds three facilities with advanced warehousing management systems, full quality assurance services, and an experienced workforce to UPS’s existing global healthcare network, now totaling 45 healthcare facilities. Through acquisitions and organic growth, UPS’s healthcare reach and expertise in Europe now includes dedicated healthcare distribution centers in the Benelux area, Central and Eastern Europe, Southern Europe, the Iberian Peninsula and the UK.