On October 1st, 2021, Air Canada announced expand and enhance the cold chain handling facilities at its Toronto Pearson International Airport as part of the country’s fight against an ongoing pandemic. The new move will reduce the cargo handling time required at the airport considerably and smoothen overall functioning of units that handle cold chain cargo. It is especially intended to ease the movement of pharmaceutical products, fresh food and other products which have a limited expiration period. The Air Canada Media Room reported that the project will be part of a larger plan of growth in the cargo division of the airlines. In line are moves for “the acquisition of freighter aircraft, the launch of dedicated freighter routes and an expansion into e-commerce”.
“This is another important step for Air Canada Cargo as we continue to grow our business and invest in our facilities to better serve our customers. Our new temperature-controlled facility, which will be the only one of its kind for a Canadian airline, represents a significant addition to Air Canada’s on-site capabilities at Toronto Pearson and to Canadian cold chain logistics. It will also give Air Canada Cargo a strategic advantage at our main hub, which handles more than 60 per cent of all our traffic, and will support the launch of routes to be served by our new freighter aircraft,” said Jason Berry, Vice President, Cargo, at Air Canada.
The upgraded facility will feature over 30,000 square feet of temperature-controlled areas and an expanded cooler to fully meet the requirements of cold chain shipments such as pharmaceuticals, fresh food and other perishables.The extended cooler will accommodate more unit load devices (ULD) and loose shipments with COL (+2°C to +8°C) and CRT (+15°C to +25°C) temperature requirements, provide additional racking, and an upgraded dedicated area for active temperature control units. These enhancements are the first step in a multi-year investment plan for the facility and are part of several planned infrastructure investment projects for Air Canada Cargo.
Air Canada is Canada’s largest domestic and international airline, and in 2019 was among the top 20 largest airlines in the world. It is Canada’s flag carrier and a founding member of Star Alliance, the world’s most comprehensive air transportation network. In 2020, Air Canada was named Global Traveler’s Best Airline in North America for the second straight year. Air Canada has also committed to a net zero emissions goal from all global operations by 2050.