CNIC Member Profile: Pacer Air Freight

With over 30 years of experience in shipping and a global network of trustworthy partners, Pacer Air Freight (Pacer) can safely, quickly, and effectively deliver isotope products worldwide.

Pacer is an independent freight forwarder responsible for transporting many life-saving isotope supplies to hospitals and research institutions, and a valued member of the Canadian Nuclear Isotope Council (CNIC).

As specialists in time-sensitive and expedited shipping, Pacer is an expert in ensuring that made-to-order medical isotope products reach customers, saving lives worldwide. Given that many isotopes have short half-lives, radiopharmaceuticals may only be effective for days, or in some cases, a few short hours. As a result, it is essential to mitigate any delays or setbacks when transporting isotope products from manufacturers to hospitals. Pacer provides last-minute shipping solutions and expert problem-solving to ensure that radiopharmaceuticals reach the patients that need them.

Pacer’s newly updated secure facility allows customers to store goods in the warehouse, which helps to expedite the transportation process for many goods. Now, when goods arrive at the airline, customers can ensure that products are already secure and ready to ship at a moment’s notice.

When moving radioactive products internationally, Pacer understands the process from start to finish, allowing them to anticipate and eliminate potential shipping bottlenecks. In addition to the technology and tracking management software to effectively move radioactive products across borders, Pacer also provides a person-to-person connection in the form of 24/7 customer service to clients. Acting as the liaison for all players involved in a project, Pacer can connect the global supply chain for isotopes and expertly mitigate problems as they arise.

Pacer joined the CNIC in 2021 to form connections between other members of the isotope industry who represent different parts of the isotope supply chain. Over the last year, Pacer has brought its expertise and ISO 9001 Certification to act as the carrier for Bruce Power, ITM Isotope Technologies, and Isogen’s historic Lu-177 project. Integrating each company’s needs, Pacer has successfully shipped Lu-177 from Canada to Germany thanks to their understanding of integral transportation regulations, flexibility, and customer-centric nature. Pacer has supported the entire production process, helping to offer new treatments to patients around the world.

If Canada is to maintain and increase its leadership position in the world’s isotope supply, we must ensure that Canadian isotope producers can safely and efficiently transport goods across borders. The CNIC is actively working to raise awareness around the needs of Canada’s isotope community, including freight forwarders like Pacer. Better clarity around the regulations and transportation requirements will help move goods faster and more efficiently.

Awareness is key to fueling innovation in the isotope sector. Airlines and customers have default procedures in place to transport radioactive materials, but are often unsure how to handle experimental isotopes or materials for clinical trials. While Pacer offers individualized training and customized operating procedures to handle new radioactive goods safely, there is work to be done to ensure all shipments of innovative products can be transported safely without delay.

In 2023, the CNIC will continue to work with valued members like Pacer to advocate for increased awareness for essential isotopes, and the vital contribution that transportation safety and efficiency make to Canada’s role in the global isotope industry.