hassle-free import handling for our customers”
In the summer of 2021, Edwin Stuik joined Amsterdam Perishable Center (APC) Handling as Managing Director. This was after a long career handling perishable air cargo. APC is a subsidiary of IPHandlers specifically focused on handling fruit and vegetable imports at Schiphol and surrounding airports.
“IPHandlers has always focused on the flower and plant business,” Edwin begins. “However, its fruit and vegetable segment was growing rapidly. Convinced that each market requires its own approach, they created sister company APC Handling in 2019. Since then we have grown a lot, but now we have realized our true potential.”
APC Handling has 6,000 m2 of air-conditioned refrigeration space. It is one of the largest international players in the air cargo handling of fruits, vegetables and other fresh produce. The company is SKAL and BRC certified. “We’re big and small, that’s how we position ourselves,” Edwin continues.
“We have a privileged interlocutor for small businesses. Our customers always have a single point of contact who takes care of the entire process: entry planning, customs formalities, control, delivery and invoicing. At the same time, we have access to a large organization (combined with IP Handlers). Our freight warehouses near Schiphol allow us to be on the front line 24/7.”
“Our motto is that we handle imports hassle-free for our customers. It involves a lot of things. Many inbound freight shipments have some sort of problem. The goods have traveled halfway around the world, so there are regular temperature problems. , delays or, for example, damaged packaging. We must ensure that the products reach the buyers in the best possible condition. We can adapt the layout of our warehouse and our cooling complex has four different temperature zones,” says Edwin.
“This greatly increases our flexibility and our level of customer service. Our unloading team are in the front row of airline hangers. This means that we often have the cargo available for our customers before most other companies. Our buyers then receive their goods earlier, or we can re-chill the products while delivering them quickly.We choose the right storage depending on the product and its condition when it arrives at our facilities.If necessary, we will re-cool properly using, for example, vacuum or blast cooling.”
“The types of fruit and vegetables that APC Handling handles around the world are endless. The most common are mangoes, avocados, asparagus, papayas, pineapples, berries, mushrooms, beans and peas. Each variety must be treated in its own characteristic, in a specific way. We know what these requirements are and we can meet them,” says Struik.
The pandemic has severely affected the air cargo industry and the market has yet to fully recover, says Edwin. “Available freight capacity is still limited. In addition, some of our customers’ imports were usually destined for Eastern Europe. These trade flows are now lagging due to the situation in Ukraine. The only advantage of the airfreight is that seafreight isn’t in a much better situation right now. Every modality has its issues, and I don’t see that improving anytime soon. However, that means we’ll remain crucial, so I’m confident that in the future of APC Handling.
“APC Handling is a young, growing and developing company,” says the managing director. “I want, in the long term, to see our activities being distributed more and more equitably. The management of fruit and vegetable imports will remain central, and this concentration will be strengthened. However, it is time for air and sea freight, exports to contribute more as a service. is a recognized name in the air cargo market.”
“But we’ve only just started with APC. We will use our current customer base and renewed identity to convince more potential customers that APC Handling is the right partner for them. in the Netherlands and surrounding European airports,” concludes Edwin.