Nearly every international airfreight forwarder and carrier has a tale or two about an unusual consignment. The Sub-Saharan Africa Services division of DHL Express, however, appears to have had more than its share.
In a press release, Sumesh Rahavendra, head of marketing for the region, noted that the number of strange food-delivery requests has been increasing. The most unusual, perhaps, was 70 pounds of haggis (a Scottish meat pudding made from lamb innards), flown from the United Kingdom to Tanzania for an event.
Rahavendra also noted that DHL often transports human eyes to Kenya for surgical purposes. The corneas have an extremely short life span and are highly perishable. Because the recipient is prepped for surgery while the cornea is in transit, success depends on prior customs releases, dedicated delivery vehicles, and a team that is willing to pull out all the stops, he said.
Other unusual deliveries: a load of laundry from the U.K. to a Southern African country for dry cleaning; 1.7 tons of fresh flowers from South Africa to Cameroon for a double wedding; and a delivery in Kenya of rare butterfly larvae that would die if delayed. (Local staff applied the same process used for corneal transplants to ensure on-time delivery.)