Carramore International Limited
Carramore International Limited

Frequently Asked Questions: Shipping

Do Carramore use a Freight Forwarder for shipping?

Mostly no but sometimes yes. When cargo is shipped by air from northern Europe, Carramore acts as the freight forwarder, and almost all product supply is shipped this way.

Carramore International is a registered IATA Cargo Agent. As such we book flights directly with the airlines and deliver straight to the airline handling sheds. We also prepare all the relevant documentation required; this includes generation of the Master Air Waybill, completion of Dangerous Goods Notes, preparation of Cargo Security Declarations and completion of customs formalities online. We therefore act as a de facto freight forwarder avoiding the need to involve a third party.

When Carramore acts as the logistics partner by air from other regions of the world, or ships by sea, we use a variety of freight forwarding partners, depending on origin and destination.


Does that mean you draw up the Air Waybill (AWB)?

Yes, when we are the freight forwarder we draw up the AWB electronically, which improves accuracy and the quality, as the soft copy is emailed.


Do you tend to favour one or two airlines?

No, we use a very large number of airlines, and make the choice based on routing, timings, capacity, airline restrictions and cost. Airlines also make changes to their schedules and to the planes they operate on routes, the detail of which we keep up to date with.


How often do you ship?

Our standard procedure is to prepare, pack, document and deliver cargo to the airlines every Friday.

This means that in most cases your cargo reaches the arrival airport on Sunday, or Monday at the latest. This allows inward customs clearance to start at the beginning of the working week and goods to be delivered to you within that same week. The frequency to a particular destination will vary according to the volume and value of orders.


How much will it cost?

Our quotations department will have set this out in your quotation/proforma invoice. This will not change no matter how we ship your order.


How is freight calculated?

There is a calculation which determines the volume weight and the larger of this value or the gross weight is the one used for the calculation of freight. The formula used depends on the actual airlines or courier company, but generally 1 cubic metre is the equivalent to 166.66 volume kg.


What does insurance cover?

Loss or damage, see Insurance for more details

Can you supply hazardous products?

Yes we can, if they can be shipped by air. The Safety Data Sheet (SDS) confirms the transport details in section 14, and determines how we can package, label, document and ship.

We are an IATA cargo agent, which requires that we have at least two members of staff who are trained and qualified in the UK CAA (Civil Aviation Authority) requirements on Dangerous Goods.
We can also ship hazardous products by sea; however the cost is considerable and usually disproportionate, unless the quantities are very large, which is not normally the case for research materials. We would instead seek to provide the product in a form which can be shipped by air.


Do you have to use cargo aircraft to ship hazardous goods?

No, most hazardous products can be and are shipped by Carramore using passenger aircraft. Nevertheless, the regulations typically allow larger bottles (inner packaging) and larger total quantities per outer pack when shipped by cargo aircraft.


Why do you typically use passenger aircraft rather than cargo aircraft?

We use the most appropriate routing, and passenger aircraft frequency is greater than that of cargo aircraft, which means we have more choice of flights, and should cargo not fly as scheduled (unusual) the next flight will be sooner. Consequently if cold chain is involved passenger aircraft offer greater cold chain security.


Why would you use a cargo aircraft?

For a number of reasons:

• Some destinations are only served by cargo aircraft, for the movement of cargo.

• The product or products to be moved are too large for one of the legs of the journey to the destination airport. The plane with the lowest door height on the journey is the limiting factor.

IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations do not allow the shipment on passenger aircraft of some chemicals, when supplied in certain inner packs.


Are there any size restrictions for shipment by air?

For practical purposes the answer is no; in terms of scientific products supply there are no weight limits. Height limits are determined by the planes serving the destination airport, and this changes over time, both increasing and reducing capacity.

Our system retains product dimensions and weight, and also maximum height availability by destination, so we are able to determine in advance what is and is not possible, and the consequent costs.


Can you supply products that require shipment under dry ice?

Yes we can, to all destinations. We use our own packaging and ship with a considerable weight of dry ice, the exact quantity dependent on the destination and journey time. We can, if necessary, get access to shipments during the journey and have boxes re-dry-iced.


But the consignee is not my physical address or where the goods are to be delivered?

The consignee should usually be the top level institute, so that import customs processes relate to the institute, and that can include the exemption from taxes.

Actual delivery of goods can be to another location.


What shipping documents do you send?

For air shipments the standard documents are:
Air Waybill.
• Packing List (in which amongst other things we record lot numbers and expiry dates).
• Packing Specification.

In addition, depending on destination we may send:
• a customs report, including commodity codes, to assist with the customs entry.
• a letter of donation.
• a Certificate of Origin.
Inspection Agency forms.

Depending on the products being supplied we may also send:
• a Dangerous Goods Note for the airline.
• a UK Export License. We obtain these from the appropriate UK Government Department and then send a copy to UK Customs (HMRC).


What do we need to do on receipt of the shipment?

The carrier’s delivery note should be carefully read to check that it covers your goods, and the number of pieces. The pieces should be counted, labels checked to ensure they are all for you, and that no damage is apparent. If any pieces are not for you they should be refused, this and any damage should be noted on the delivery note, and if no copy is provided a copy should be taken. 

Check the consignment for temperature sensitive products and put them to the appropriate storage conditions, even if checking off is to happen the following day.


What sort of damage should be noted?

Physical damage to a carton, leaking liquids etc.


What do we do next?

Open up the boxes and carry out your usual goods received checking, it may well be that some external damage has not translated into product damage. If product is damaged, set out the details in an email to your Carramore order administrator, including any documentation you have.


Can I get a replacement for broken and/or damaged goods?

Yes, when goods arrive damaged or broken we will replace them, and seek redress from the supply chain if possible.


Where do you send the shipping documents?

We email the full set of documents to the company clearing the cargo at the final destination, although we may also send all these documents to the relevant user/s. Invoices are also sent individually to the Requester, User and any finance contacts specified for the relevant buying organisation (customer), with each email referencing the customer number, the original quotation/proforma number, the purchase order reference and the invoice number.


How do you ensure cold chain products arrive in good condition?

We carefully manage the cold chain:

• by reducing delay in the system through understanding and managing the processes at each stage of the journey.

• by ensuring that the appropriate method of shipment is made to Carramore, from the supplier.

• from arrival at Carramore, where temperature conditions are checked, monitored and recorded

• by shipping all cold products in polystyrene boxes with outers and either wet ice or dry ice, as  appropriate; or using qualified packaging for the most sensitive products, such as medicines

• through appropriate labelling of cold chain boxes.

• holding temperature sensitive cargo in airport cold rooms during customs clearance.

• refreshing ice bricks and adding additional dry ice during the journey, as appropriate.


Our processes are inspected by the UK Medical and Healthcare Regulatory Agency (MHRA) who have issued Carramore with a Good Distribution Practice (GDP) certificate.


Do you manage Lot Numbers and Expiry Dates?

We manage lot and expiry dates. This information is recorded when we receive products and is printed on the product label as well as appearing on our packing list. In both cases we aim to help you with both inventory control and better record your lot changes according to GCLP.


Can you ship pharmaceuticals and clinical trial materials?

The sourcing, storage and distribution of medicines is a regulated activity in the EU. As we are based in the UK we are regulated by the MHRA (Medical and Healthcare Regulatory Agency) and Carramore hold a Good Distribution Practice certificate and Wholesale Dealer’s Authorisation, which enables us to purchase, store, and ship pharmaceuticals.

The EC guidelines require that we maintain such products within their permitted temperature range from receipt through to the final delivery point, and to this end we use our regular packaging where possible, and qualified packaging when the conditions require.

All pharmaceuticals have their temperature recorded from arrival using our fixed systems, through temperature recording devices during their shipment.

We are able to use our qualified systems to ship clinical trial material, and maintain records in order to meet your demanding requirements.


What temperature information do you hold on products?

We record:

• the temperature conditions in which we receive the product (ambient, wet ice, dry ice or liquid nitrogen).

• the storage temperature, refrigerator, freezer, ultra-freezer or liquid nitrogen).

• the temperature conditions in which we will ship the product (ambient, wet ice, dry ice or liquid nitrogen).

• additional temperature notes.


Additionally all products requiring temperature control are stored after receipt by Carramore in locations with temperature monitoring and data recording. The monitoring and recording are to the standards required by the MHRA for the storage of medicinal products for human use, and is one aspect covered by our Good Distribution Practice certificate.


It is often the case that we will ship under more stringent conditions than those in which the products are received, which generally reflects the difference between the short delivery period to us from the supplier (typically one day – from within the EU, or two days from the US or Japan) when contrasted to the longer shipment time to the tropics, with more complex clearing and exemption processes.