The use of monitoring systems in fruit and vegetable shipments has become “very important” in recent times due to the challenges and delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and industrial disputes, according to an Australian-based cargo technology company.
Avcatech National Sales Manager Steve Tenni says the pandemic has created havoc with shipping line schedules and huge increases in airfreight costs, but its system Avcacheck aims to help optimize the performance of client's supply and distribution chains, to ultimately improve quality and productivity.
"The Avcacheck service has allowed our clients to locate precisely where their vessel is, live at any point in its voyage anywhere in the world," he explained. "This has given them the ability to manage delays by taking corrective action upon arrival. They have also been able to access updated ETAs to stay informed about the progress of their shipments."
Mr Tenni added that clients have been able to identify temperature spikes in the supply chain bringing accountability to all the distribution participants from the farm to the store.
"This has provided maximised shelf life by optimising the arrival condition of our clients produce," he said. "The increased visibility in the supply chain also minimises the risk of food wastage and rejections. With our live vessel tracking our clients have been able to keep up with shipping delays and follow where their goods are live throughout the journey and get updated ETAs on their vessels’ arrivals. This has allowed them to optimise logistics contingent on arrival."
Director and CEO Sanjay Savur says Avcatech was recently formed from a Management Buyout of the MAXtend Division of Mitsubishi Australia. MAXtend is a pioneer in providing Controlled Atmosphere Services to all major Shipping Lines and Perishable Produce Exporters globally over the last 20 years and is a trusted brand worldwide. MAXtend assists in extending the storage life of perishable cargo thus enabling safe transport over longer distances and transit times.
"Key markets we service are exports outbound from Australia, New Zealand, USA, Mexico, Chile, Peru, Colombia, South Africa & Kenya," Mr Savur said. "We also have Agents in inbound destinations such as the UK, EU, Japan, Korea, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand and Singapore to provide logistics and customer support. Major cargo handled are Avocado, Blueberry, Asparagus, Snow Pea, Lettuce, Mango, Banana, Peaches, Plums."
Over the last few years, Avcatech has developed our own patented low-power modems to monitor MAXtend shipments globally so we could take corrective action if needed to avoid customers suffering cargo claims.
"We also developed a unique in-transit Cargo Respiration Rate monitoring technology to monitor the health of cargo throughout the voyage," Mr Savur said.
"As a logical next step in response to demand for data from our Customers, Avcatech introduced the Avcacheck Data Service to provide value-added monitoring solutions to the Fresh Produce Industry. The Avcacheck technology is simple to integrate into any company's existing operations. We can customise our sensors to our clients’ requirements. The Avcacheck device is simply placed with the product and the antenna is placed in position. Once the unit is turned on all the client has to do is log on to their device and they can access the data. As more fresh produce suppliers learn about the benefits of data analytics and live location tracking the demand for our service will continue to grow."
While Avcacheck is a recent entrant in the Australian market it has been created from our own Maxtend technology which has been successfully utilised by many of the major shipping lines around the world for over twenty years.
"We are certainly looking to grow our business," Mr Tenni said. "We have been servicing the fresh fruit and vegetable industries but there is increasing interest from other producers such as meat, dairy, poultry, grains and nuts who recognise the value in quality data and supply chain visibility. We also service dry cargo and high-value goods manufacturers who benefit from the security they get from live location tracking of their products anywhere in the world.”