Sealogis Belgium invests in perishables vertical with hire of Jakob Van Poucke

Transporting fresh or frozen food requires a lot of expertise from your logistics partner. There are many factors you have to take into account, such as certain mandatory inspections or the cold chain that must be respected. To ensure a growth in their perishables vertical, Sealogis Belgium has attracted Jakob Van Poucke at the end of 2023. Jakob has over 20 years of experience in the sector, and will leverage his extensive network to further grow the perishables division.

We rarely dwell on it, but a big part of our vegetables, fruits and seafood is imported from abroad. To do so, companies rely on the knowledge and expertise of logistics partners such as Sealogis.

"What makes logistics for perishables so unique is that there is always a certain time pressure. You really have to be passionate about your trade in order to be good at it", explains Jakob Van Poucke, Business Development Manager Agro/Perishables at Sealogis Belgium. "Because you work with fresh products, your timings have to be right. Otherwise you risk your cargo no longer being usable on arrival."

Count on our network

This requires a lot of knowledge, which is also present at Sealogis. Indeed, for perishables, there are many procedures that must be followed. Think about the temperature at which certain things must remain frozen throughout the entire journey. But it’s also important to be able to move quickly, and to be able to count on your extensive network.

Jakob continues, "For our operations, we depend heavily on different factors that you cannot control in advance. Harvests sometimes fail due to the weather, geopolitical situations cause unexpected detours. To manage all that, we count on our knowledge and extensive network that we have built over the years.

"Let’s look at the situation in the Middle East. We’ve already worked a lot with potato importers from Israel, but next season there seem to be more problems there because of the well-known geopolitical situation, etcetera. All of a sudden Northern Europe is looking at Egypt to replace the import from Israel. For those traffics to and from Egypt, we can be an added value for a lot of importers and exporters", says Jakob.

Present at key trade shows

One way to maintain and expand those relationships is by participating in trade fairs in Belgium and abroad. For example, Sealogis is present at the Fruit Logistica fair in Berlin early February, and we’re also participating in the WCA Conference in Dubai and Fish International in Bremen in late February.

"We have offices in all major European food gateways. This allows us to shift focus fast, which is especially valuable for our customers in the perishable segment. Right now it's low-season, but soon enough early potatoes will appear on our and our clients radar. Then the West African mango season starts, where we will again look to engage with some new customers. On the other hand, from August/September to December, exports of potatoes, carrots and onions from Belgium and the Netherlands will become interesting again.”

In the coming year, Jakob and Sealogis Group want to grow the perishables vertical steadily and sustainably. “We also want to focus on fresh and frozen products this upcoming year. But we can do much more in this vertical. Just think of shipping grain, honey or syrups in large quantities or even pet food. All things we will definitely look at in 2024.”

Sealogis Freight Forwarding Belgium is present at the upcoming Fruit Logistica fair at the Port of Antwerp-Bruges booth: Hall 26, H-51.

For more information:
Jakob Van Poucke
Sealogis Freight Forwarding Belgium
+32 (0)3 470 21 49