21:46 PM

MIA stacks more Belgian cargo service on its plate

Air Atlanta Icelandic launches weekly flight between Leige and MIA

On February 7, Miami International Airport welcomed the first weekly all-cargo flight by Air Atlanta Icelandic from Liege, Belgium, marking the fourth freighter carrier to launch service between Belgium and Miami within the past 12 months. Air Atlanta Icelandic is using Boeing B747-400F aircraft with a maximum payload of 127 metric tons for the weekly service.

Air Atlantic Icelandic’s new Liege service follows the launch of five weekly flights by EAT Leipzig last October, three weekly flights by Amerijet last April, and five weekly flights by DHL Express last March, all from Brussels.

As Europe’s leading hub for handling temperature-sensitive pharmaceutical (pharma) products such as vaccines, Belgium continues to grow as an important freight partner for MIA, and especially now with the global distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Through the third quarter of 2020, MIA handled a total of $2.9 billion in pharma imports and exports, with Belgium ranking as one of MIA’s top 10 trade partners for pharma imports at $7 million. As the busiest U.S. airport for international freight and perishable products, MIA has been a global hub for pharma products, essential supplies and e-commerce throughout the pandemic. 

Brussels Airport and MIA were the first two airports in the world designated as Pharma Hub Airports by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), and have been working on expanding their shared pharma route for the past decade. IATA’s Pharma Center of Excellence for Independent Validators (CEIV) Certification Program certifies that pharma products are transported in accordance with global best practices.

Additionally, MIA and Brussels Airport are the co-founders of Pharma.Aero, a non-profit international organization that aims to achieve excellence in reliable end-to-end air transportation for life science and med-tech shippers, by fostering collaboration between CEIV certified airport communities dedicated in developing and pioneering when it comes to handling, storage and air transportation of pharmaceuticals. The organization now includes 44 members from around the world representing the pharma cargo and logistics industry.