Bureau Veritas and Optel tackle Covid-19 supply chain

  • January 19, 2021
  • Steve Rogerson

French firm Bureau Veritas is partnering Canadian company Optel to launch V-Trace traceability technology for Covid-19 vaccines along the whole supply chain.

Bureau Veritas specialises in testing, inspection and certification, and Optel provides pharmaceutical supply chain traceability platforms. They have joined forces to address the critical issue of reliability and traceability in Covid-19 vaccine logistics chains.

In the next few months, billions of doses of Covid-19 vaccines will need to be rapidly and safely administered to people around the world. The complexity of cold chain conditions, the timeliness of delivery as well as the need to mitigate risk of any deviation are identified as critical difficulties for successful large-scale vaccination.

V-Trace is designed to track and trace Covid-19 vaccines, while ensuring risk mitigation thanks to controls and inspections all along the logistics chain. It provides a global control of the supply chain thanks to the local presence of inspectors in the field.

“The priority for all governments and private institutions is to ensure that vaccine doses are safe and secure,” said Didier Michaud-Daniel, CEO of Bureau Veritas. “This means tracking and tracing vaccines along the supply chain. Bureau Veritas’ experience in independent inspections along the supply chain to control inventories, storage and logistics conditions complements Optel’s ability to provide real-time traceability information. By combining our respective expertise, we are able to provide a single way to control and mitigate risk throughout the logistics chains.”

V-Trace is said to provide governments with:

  • Visibility to control their vaccine orders all along the logistics chain in one single control tower, ensuring the traceability of every batch of vaccines.
  • Compliance of vaccine batches through verified collected information on storage and distribution conditions all along the logistics chain.
  • Assurance that vaccines are well stored, transported and conserved, in particular assurance that cold chain requirements are met, with temperature verification performed by Bureau Veritas’ inspectors along the logistics chain.

“The Covid-19 vaccine distribution is an unprecedented challenge for nations across the world,” said Louis Roy, CEO of Optel. “To successfully address this challenge, nations will need transparency at every level of the supply chain. This is precisely what Optel’s traceability platform has been built for, over the last three decades. Optel is proud to be joining forces with Bureau Veritas to bring complete visibility and certainty to the distribution of vaccines. As the leader in digital traceability, our mission is to use our technologies to create a better world. We know our traceability technologies combined with the expertise of Bureau Veritas can make a difference to overcome this historical challenge.”

Optel provides end-to-end traceability, with actionable, granular data at every step of the supply chain from raw materials to the consumer and beyond. Founded in 1989, it is headquartered in Canada, with facilities in India, Ireland and Brazil, as well as employees worldwide.

Created in 1828, Bureau Veritas has more than 75,000 employees in more than 1500 offices and laboratories around the globe. It offers services to ensure that assets, products, infrastructure and processes meet standards and regulations in terms of quality, health and safety, environmental protection, and social responsibility.

Kuehne+Nagel has signed an international supply chain arrangement with Moderna to provide distribution and storage of its Covid-19 vaccine following the granting of conditional marketing authorisation by the European Medicines Agency.