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CryoSure®: Innovation for Smaller, Colder Shipments

Making -70°C shipping predictable and accessible

Medicines, vaccines, and many other life sciences and healthcare items often require temperature-controlled shipment and storage. Various solutions are available, with one in particular making headlines – the CryoSure® solution from Envirotainer.

We took the opportunity to discuss this innovation with Patricia Cole, Global Head DHL Same Day & DHL Global Forwarding Temperature Management Solutions.

Why are temperature-controlled shipments so important in life sciences?

Patricia Cole: At DHL, we realize that lives can be improved and, in some cases, saved by the timely and secure delivery of pharmaceuticals, vaccines, cell and gene therapies, clinical trial materials, and other non-finished products. Shipments like these may require strict end-to-end temperature control at -70 degrees Celsius (-158°F) to retain content integrity and quality.

Why is DHL partnering with Envirotainer to offer the CryoSure solution?

Patricia Cole: For our life sciences and healthcare customers, we always seek out the latest proven, smart solutions. We’ve been collaborating with Envirotainer for more than a decade and we find the CryoSure solution to be both viable and effortless to use. Shippers simply put their items inside the container and make one phone call; the rest is up to us.

CryoSure fits the personalized medicine space perfectly for high-value, temperature sensitive shipments that are smaller, colder, and require an expedited transit to maintain product stability.

What are the current challenges of shipping at –70°C?

Patricia Cole: It’s essential to keep contents at the right temperature throughout the journey. That means maintaining –70°C even when the ambient temperature is exceptionally high and if there are any unexpected shipment delays or perhaps a hold-up during customs clearance.

Traditional dry ice solutions are viable only for a limited time period, at which point re-icing can be done. But this can be problematic in certain geographies due to lack of infrastructure and dry ice supply, and it introduces a risk of human error. The fully self-contained CryoSure solution overcomes these challenges, maintaining –70°C for up to three weeks without any re-icing requirement, even if it is opened or exposed to high temperatures. Three weeks is an extraordinarily long time, with shipments in this category typically taking no more than 4 or 5 days, so there is a very comfortable safety margin.

In your view, what is the level of innovation in the CryoSure solution compared to other solutions on the market?

Patricia Cole: It’s highly innovative. The CryoSure solution is unique in terms of the transportation model, delivering a fully preconditioned, charged container to the point of origin. The customer places the life sciences product in the container, seals it, applies a destination label, and requests a pickup – a process that is done within minutes. After shipment, containers are reconditioned and ready for reuse. There is very little effort needed to complete the cycle. With the addition of real time visibility 24/7 and post-shipment data evaluation, there is a safeguard against external challenges, potential deviations, and risks associated with traditional dry ice solutions.

How can digital services support the success of a shipment?

Patricia Cole: By combining real-time shipment monitoring with the CryoSure solution, we add a layer of confidence and peace of mind that are essential in this field. Customers need to know that their potentially life-saving products are safely in transit, reaching all milestones as planned, and due to arrive on time.

Does CryoSure contribute to DHL’s sustainability strategy?

Patricia Cole: Yes, the solution makes a valuable contribution to the DHL Group commitment to net zero logistics by 2050. The container is lightweight, which is ideal for aircraft load optimization and for overall reduction in CO2 emissions and transportation costs. And reusable by design means the CryoSure container offers excellent green credentials.

Where can customers find further information about the CryoSure solution?

Patricia Cole: I recommend reviewing our temperature management solutions portfolio and discussing specific requirements with our specialist team.

Want to learn more about Temperature-Controlled Solutions?

Find out how DHL Global Forwarding ensures timely and secure transportation of sensitive and temperature-controlled air freight shipments.