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Takaisin Pharma - Ensuring uninterrupted flu vaccine production

Flu vaccines must reach people who need them on time - even during the COVID-19 pandemic. To ensure steady production, a leading vaccine manufacturer had to deliver critical raw materials to its manufacturing site. Kuehne+Nagel helped modify their supply chain to transport the goods quickly and efficiently.


A world leader in influenza vaccine manufacturing


Pharma & Healthcare/Vaccine Manufacturing


Urgent delivery of essential materials to the vaccine manufacturing site ensured continued production of flu vaccines during COVID-19


  • Airside collection
  • Zero delays
  • Legal compliance with driver hours restrictions

Vaccines are in high demand every flu season, but this year, because of coronavirus, was like no other. Kuehne+Nagel’s customer, a world leader in manufacturing influenza vaccines, was committed to continue the production of the flu vaccines without interruption despite the challenges brought on by COVID-19. 

Under normal circumstances, they would ship the time-sensitive raw materials directly from US to the manufacturing site in Spain. However, due to the constant changes in flight schedules and the announcement of a lockdown in Spain, the client needed to alter their usual mode of operations without losing a significant amount of time. They reached out to Kuehne+Nagel to help them develop a compliant solution. 

As the first step, we completed a risk assessment with the customer to ensure compliance with the regulations, protection of all key workers. It also helped facilitate a timely and undisturbed delivery. Since national lockdown measures were changing very quickly, borders were closing and flights within Europe were getting delayed or cancelled. To overcome these challenges, we chose to fly the goods to the UK and complete the rest of the delivery by road - using Eurotunnel to minimise the waiting time.

Once all of the delivery details were organised, the plan was set in motion. However, due to multiple flight delays in the US, the raw materials reached our UK warehouse much later than planned. The team that had been tracking the shipment status had anticipated this ahead of time. Richard Mann, our Pharma and Healthcare Development Specialist and one of the biggest contributors to this entire operation, elaborates, “Since we weren’t sure exactly when the goods might arrive from the US, we had to be ready all day to receive them when they did come.”

The team moved quickly once the shipment reached Heathrow airport - monitoring the temperature, checking the physical condition of the goods, and completing all of the legal compliance checks in record time. The shipment was picked up within an hour of its arrival and was ready to start the journey to Madrid. 

The Kuehne+Nagel customer service team kept the client updated at every critical point throughout the journey. They also shared the shipment status with the factory that was expecting the raw materials in Madrid, allowing them to plan ahead. “We were able to save almost a whole day from the normal shipping time by closely collaborating with our partners and keeping them in the loop”, explains Richard. He goes on to add, “This brought peace of mind to our customer.” The truck reached Madrid on time.

Richard is proud of the dedication and innovation that everyone displayed during such a critical period, “Our partner’s openness to exploring dynamic solutions and our trusting relationship helped us navigate through it all. We were happy that they could achieve their aim and provide continued care to the people that needed these vaccines.” 

"Thank you for making the shipment happen even on such short notice. The hard work of the team paid off and the goods arrived safely and on time." (Director, Global Logistics of vaccine manufacturing company)