Schiphol links critical flower shipment data to Air Waybills

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March 14, 2018: As part of its Smart Cargo Mainport Program (SCMP) to instill trust and transparency in the supply chain value chain, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol has recently linked the flower shipment data to its new portal, Air Waybill. 

SCMP aims to transform Schiphol as a smartest airport in Europe, through enhanced data sharing. It includes initiatives taken by the Holland Flower Alliance Data Sharing Working Group, which had primarily piloted the scheme.

According to Schiphol, Flower shipment data, comprising number of boxes, flower type and number of flowers and stems in each box, will be linked to the Air Waybill numbers by the new portal, which will subsequently generate a unique GLN code that would offer all users an access to the overall data stored in one place.

During a pilot run conducted between Nairobi and Kenya, to the flower auction in Aalsmeer in the Netherlands, flowers shipments could be traceable in real time, which included product and shipment information.

The unique GLN code comprises a shipment reference and an order code, which creates a universally recognised format that cannot be duplicated. It also provides end-to-end visibility, which can be access by every supply chain partner through their own internal systems.

Besides, it provides more information to every party in the supply chain to effectively track and trace their shipments in real time during the entire journey. It also offer options to effectively plan their operations and make changes in real time.

“With the help of a close collaboration between the floriculture and air cargo sectors, we are now able to link two critical sets of data, and foster trust between parties, by making the data available to everyone, in real time,” said Jonas van Stekelenburg, head of cargo, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol.

“The new portal uses a unique ‘global standard 1’ code (GLN), which is combined with an order number. With this, the system mitigates duplication of either order numbers or Air Waybill numbers,” said Stekelenburg.

Holland Flower Alliance partners, along with Kuehne + Nagel and Panalpina are currently working towards user-friendly ways to present the data to the end customer.  

“This unique collaboration with the help of SCMP and the Holland Flower Alliance is of great value for the precious supply chain of floriculture cargo,” said Marcel de Nooijer, EVP, Air France KLM and managing director, Martinair.

“By joining hands, we are planning to increase efficiency, quality, and lower costs throughout the entire supply chain. The development and launch of this data sharing platform is a proof that we are doing ‘new stuff’ to benefit all stakeholders in the floriculture chain,” said Stekelenburg.

The portal was developed after consultation with the cargo community, which identified priorities for the perishable cool chain, with the ability to track and trace on box level, from farm to auction, which is a priority for all parties.

“The portal offers access to sensitive data only to authorised parties, thereby increasing trust and cooperation. It will further help in encouraging collaboration towards common goals,” said Koos van der Meij, project manager, Information Sharing Working Group.

The SCMP aims to increase efficiency at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol by way of enhanced use to data sharing. The projects that fall under the program, includes Pharma Gateway Amsterdam, and EU Green Fast Lanes.

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