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Peter Stafleu, APC Handling:

"Looming restriction on cargo flights would undermine Dutch position as gateway into Europe"

Tholen - Five years ago, Amsterdam Perishable Center (APC) was launched as a sister company of IPHandlers, specifically focused on the handling of fruits and vegetables. Just a stone's throw from Schiphol, APC offers a complete handling service for both air and sea freight with its cold store of over 6,000 m2. In addition to logistic solutions for fruit and vegetable clients, the service has also been extended to fish, meat, and foodstuff clients. Since last December, Peter Stafleu has been active as general manager, with a growing team of specialists, one of whom, Rene Baan, will be retiring on August 1.

"Practically all the fruits and vegetables grown worldwide can be found here, whether they arrive via airports or come in containers through the ports. We take care of the entire handling process, from customs clearance to storage, quality checks, and transport to the customer. Our warehouse offers conditioned storage spaces with different temperature zones to ensure that all goods remain in perfect condition, whether they are asparagus from Peru, mangoes from South America, or dragon fruit from China," Peter explains.

APC Handling offers an all-in package from all Dutch and Belgian airports, as well as airports like Frankfurt and Paris. "We distinguish ourselves through our speed and accuracy. Shipments that arrive today are delivered to the customer's warehouse early tomorrow morning before 06:00. "We don't open products, because they are not ours. Loose cargo that comes from the airport, we build up on pallets as efficiently as possible, so it can be delivered to the customer in a tidy manner," Peter tells.

"We also share our customs expertise with our partners. For this reason, we have also recently become a member of GroentenFruit Huis. Besides import and export procedures, we can always share the right information about fiscal, customs, and phytosanitary regulations," Peter continues. "In addition to the service our team provides via email and phone, our customers are also kept up to date in real-time with our comprehensive track-and-trace system."

In addition to the AEO and SKAL certifications, APC has recently obtained the new FSSC 22000 V6 certificate. "We are proud that we can already meet this new standard. FSSC 22000 stands for Food Safety System Certification and is based on ISO 22000. The FSSC 22000 standard is tailored to the logistics sector and is globally equivalent to GFSI standards like IFS and BRC. It confirms our focus on hygiene, food safety, and administrative processes and strives to eliminate as many risks as possible and relieve customers of their worries."

Peter shows the new certificate.

When asked about the biggest challenge, Peter mentions the sentiment around air freight and the uncertain position of the airport. "We have a leading position in the Netherlands as a gateway to Europe, but it is increasingly being undermined. Schiphol processes 1.5 million tons of high-quality air freight annually, about half of which arrives in passenger planes and the other half in cargo planes. However, due to current environmental and noise legislation, the number of cargoes is increasingly being limited. How a possible new cabinet will deal with this is uncertain, but it is a concern for us."

"Cargo planes significantly contribute to the prosperity of the Netherlands and make the country a crucial hub for global air freight. A looming restriction on cargo flights via Schiphol would undermine the Dutch position on global trade routes and harm the economy. International companies are also increasingly reconsidering the position of the Netherlands. We are already seeing fewer planes landing. However, we do see that the planes are being loaded fuller. In April, we received 10% more volume, while the number of flights had decreased by 9%."

"Politicians sometimes seem to forget that planes are becoming greener. And sometimes, you're dependent on air freight. This year, for instance, the attacks on ships in the Red Sea have led to a significant increase in trade from Asia via air. It is therefore in the national interest that Schiphol's position is not further eroded. At the same time, amidst all uncertainties, one certainty is that we are increasingly heading towards a food shortage. That convinces me that we are needed more than ever before."

For more information:
Peter Stafleu
APC Handling
Noordpolderweg 13
1432 JH Aalsmeer
Tel: +31 297 747 266
[email protected]

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