LATAM Cargo’s GRU cool-chain facility to open by 2019 peak season

Santiago-based LATAM Cargo is currently working on the construction of a cool-chain facility at São Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport (GRU) in Brazil that the carrier says will be ready in time for peak season 2019.

Almost half of LATAM Cargo’s volumes are perishable commodities – such as salmon, asparagus and flowers – and, currently, 14 percent of those shipments travel through GRU. However, the airport is known in the logistics community for its slow customs processes and limited capacity for temperature-sensitive cargo, like pharma imports and produce exports, which are both moved in significant volumes through the hub.

The more-than-17,000-square-foot storage facility will increase the carrier’s cool-chain storage capacity by 33 percent at the airport and serve to “reduce the time exposition of the cargo,” since the re-palletizing process will be done within a temperature-controlled environment, the carrier said.

The building will offer storage for cargo requiring ranges of 32-36°, and 36-55°F, and be able to increase the temperature in any of its coolers up to 77° in case of a specific requests.

CEO of LATAM Cargo Andrés Bianchi indicated that the investment could lay a foundation for the carrier to expand its route network.

“Building a new cooler facility focused on connecting perishable traffic in our main hub enables us to boost our strategic position,” Bianchi said. “We can now offer our perishable customers a growing number of [origin-destination] pairs while maintaining the high quality standards associated with our value proposition.” 

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