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Cold Storage Company Gets Designation To Aid Foreign Imports

By Audrey Elsberry, posted Feb 1, 2024
Frontier Scientific Services recently gained a Foreign Trade Zone designation for its 805 N. 23rd St. warehouse, the company announced Wednesday. (File photo)
Frontier Scientific Solutions, a life science cold storage and logistics company, recently took a step to facilitate its international business with a Foreign Trade Zone designation, the company announced Wednesday.

The firm's about 60,000-square-foot warehouse is on North 23rd Street in Wilmington. Frontier’s new FTZ designation will facilitate importing goods from its customers in foreign countries, namely Ireland, India and in the greater European Union, said Michael Braddock, Frontier’s chief revenue officer.

Frontier is a cGMP pharmaceutical storage company, meaning it recieves pharmaceutical goods like drugs from its customers and stores them using Current Good Manufacturing Practices, ensuring the drugs are stored at the right temperature. Its 23rd Street facility has storage space ranging from ambient, or controlled room temperature, to -86 degrees Celsius.

There are several Foreign Trade Zones across the country, and these zones allow for domestic activity involving foreign items to take place before formal customs entry, according to the International Trade Administration.

Frontier’s is Wilmington's “first fully bonded and FTZ designated warehouse within zone 214,” Braddock said. Each Foreign Trade Zone in the country is numbered, southeast North Carolina is Zone 214, where Frontier is designated. Frontier is the first activated warehouse to be given the designation in the southeast N.C. zone, according to Braddock.

Advantages of the zone include reducing duties, or import taxes, on imported materials when they come into the port and minimizing administrative roadblocks of the import process, accelerating the rate at which goods can be processed through the Wilmington warehouse, according to Frontier officials.

Zone 214 spans 22 counties in southeast N.C. It stretches as far west as Robeson and Cumberland County, up to Nash County and as far east as Carteret and Hyde County. The zone includes both the Port of Wilmington and Morehead City.

Other Foreign Trade Zones in the state include Zone 93, the Greater Research Triangle Zone; Zone 230, the Piedmont Triad Zone; Zone 57, the Greater Charlotte Zone; Zone 20, the Northeast N.C. Zone; and Zone 301, the Land of Sky Zone out of Asheville.

In 2022, Frontier officials announced it would take over the cold storage facility at 805 N. 23rd St., which was then being used as a beer distribution warehouse by Adams Beverages. The cold storage company inked a deal with Wilmington International Airport to plan two new facilities by the airport, named ILM Depot I and ILM Depot II. ILM Depot I is under construction and is set to span 500,000 square feet. Depot II is in the design phase and is planned to be at least 250,000 square feet, according to Frontier’s website.

The FTZ designation currently only applies to its North 23rd Street warehouse, Braddock said, once construction is completed, Depot I and II are expected to become FTZ facilities.
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