United Arab Shipping Company, UASC, a leading container shipping line and emerging global carrier, plans to make significant investment in new "reefer" units, the company announced today at WOP Dubai, the international perishables exhibition for the Middle East.
The expansion of its fleet of refrigerated units and enhanced geographic access to the South America trades - following UASC’s recently announced cooperation with Hamburg Sud - ensures that all UASC customers now have access to the important South America trades as part of UASC’s comprehensive global reach, including those moving refrigerated cargo.
Gareth Madsen, Head of reefer Management at UASC, commented, "Through partnerships with leading operators, investment in some of the largest and most eco-efficient container vessels ever built, and a commitment to expanding reefer services, UASC is moving up the rankings of the global container liner shipping industry in a way that reflects our strategic growth plans.
"We are continuously investing in our container fleet to meet customer demand and to comply with the most up-to-date specifications. Expanding our reefer fleet will ensure that we continue to offer our customers the most cutting-edge, energy-efficient solutions for the carriage of frozen and chilled cargoes." With a global network servicing established and emerging markets, UASC’s steadily expanding reefer fleet is one of the youngest in the industry, with an average reefer container age of three years. Significantly, 80% of UASC’s current reefer fleet has the ability to measure the CO2 levels of the cargo and automatically ventilate as required, enhancing both product quality and environmental performance.
Designed to automatically regulate the internal atmosphere of the container, the AV+ system uses greatly reduced energy consumption compared to manual or other automated fresh air systems. It intelligently monitors the concentration of O2 and CO2 gases inside the container, resulting in an optimum atmosphere and the safest possible transport of the valuable cargo.
Specialised product management is crucial to successfully transporting reefer cargo. This includes both chilled and frozen cargo - commodities such as meat, fish, poultry, fresh produce, dairy products and pharmaceuticals. UASC’s dedicated professionals help customers by providing guidance in this process, including input on temperature, humidity and ventilation, among other specifications, and quality control procedures.
Madsen explains: "What differentiates UASC as a carrier in the reefer market is our focus on our customers’ cargo, flexibility and the reliability of our services. We work closely with our customers to safeguard the quality and freshness of their products, advising them on the optimum temperature settings, as well as their supply chain ‘from the farm all the way to the supermarket’." "UASC has offered reefer cargo services for the past 20 years and we are proud of our track record in providing customers with world-class temperature controlled cargo solutions. Our aim is to be the carrier of choice, not only to and from Middle Eastern markets but also in other key global reefer markets. Our aspirations for the reefer business form a key element of our ambitious expansion strategy." This announcement follows news of UASC’s current new building programme, comprising 17 ships (eleven 14,500 TEU vessels and six 18,800 TEU vessels), and cooperations with leading liner shipping companies CMA CGM and China Shipping Container Lines (together forming the Ocean Three alliance), as well as The Hamburg Sud Group. UASC believes that these milestones demonstrate its commitment to driving down costs, optimising networks and continuously improving the products offered to customers.
WOP Dubai 2014, a leading trade show for the fresh produce industry in the Middle East, is taking place this week at the Dubai World Trade Centre.