Miami International Airport, the only airport in North America to receive a designation of excellence in pharmaceutical (pharma) cargo logistics from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), this week celebrated two more of its pharma hub partners – Worldwide Flight Services (WFS) and LATAM Cargo – achieving IATA’s Center of Excellence for Independent Validators in (CEIV) pharma logistics certification.

IATA, the trade association for the world’s airlines – representing some 265 airlines, or 83 percent of total air traffic – created the CEIV program to certify that pharma products are transported in accordance with global best practices.

“Congratulations to WFS and LATAM Cargo for being awarded these internationally recognized seals of excellence in pharma logistics,” said Miami-Dade Aviation Department (MDAD) Chief of Staff Joseph Napoli. “We appreciate their dedication and support toward expanding MIA’s role as the Pharma Hub of the Americas.”

After becoming the first CEIV-certified airline at MIA and in the Americas in April, LATAM Cargo has also now completed its IATA certification as a ground handling company. WFS and LATAM Cargo join Amerijet and Swissport as the four CEIV-certified companies at MIA – the most of any North American airport. Swissport’s Miami station was the first cargo handling company at MIA and the first Swissport station in North America to be CEIV-certified. The Miami stations of international freight forwarders DHL Global Forwarding and Kuehne & Nagle, located off MIA property, also received their CEIV certificates in 2017.

“This certification demonstrates the quality and consistency of our pharma product,” said Andres Bianchi, CEO of LATAM Cargo. “As the first airline CEIV-certified for pharma in the Americas, and now that we’ve achieved this certification as a handler service in Miami, we reaffirm our aim of becoming the preferred choice for cargo transport to, from and inside Latin America. It also reflects our commitment to deliver excellent service to our customers.”

In 2015, MIA was designated a pharma hub by IATA for organizing nine of its logistics providers – which included airlines, ground handling companies and freight forwarders – to undergo the CEIV program, making it the first pharma freight hub in the U.S. and the second in the world to receive the global recognition. MIA’s pharma trade has grown in value from $1.8 billion 2010 to $4.4 billion in 2016.

“MIA has demonstrated great vision and leadership in encouraging CEIV certification for cargo operators at the airport, “ said Nick Careen, IATA Senior Vice President, Airports, Passenger, Cargo and Security. “The airport’s commitment to CEIV Pharma is yet further proof of the importance of this certification scheme to raising standards and quality across the cold-chain freight network. By putting CEIV Pharma certification at the heart of their operations, cargo stakeholders will ensure that Miami becomes a destination of choice for these high-value shipments.”