Industry news

Kids pack revamp for TUI Group

October 17, 2017

Kids packs specialist, Milk Jnr’s & Kidworks have updated its inflight children’s packs for TUI Group’s airlines.

The revamp for packs flying on TUI Nordic, TUI Netherlands, TUI Belgium and TUI / Thomson Airways merges two packs into one and features a passport-style activity book that children can fill out with information about their journey and holiday, along with holiday-themed games and puzzles.

It also features a new set of ‘Perfect Pairs’ playing cards which have been designed and formatted to be used as a tray table game. Whilst ‘Jet Set Squares’ – a bingo style game – encourages family time and interaction and can be taken away and used post-flight.

Milk Jnr’s & Kidworks has again incorporated multi-lingual game instructions in the pack and made all the other activities intuitive and language neutral.

Claire Serdet, product manager inflight supply chain at TUI, says: “The packs were hugely popular with our customers when they launched back in 2015. This new and updated version builds on that success and I’m sure it will be a real hit with our young travellers and their families.”

Gemma Drew, account director at Milk Jnr’s & Kidworks, adds: “We see the new pack as an evolution of the previous one we created for the group two years ago and we’ve worked hard to keep TUI’s brand essence at the centre of every element.”

Etihad champions young designers

October 17, 2017

Etihad Airways has launched a competition to engage four young Emirati fashion designers to create its new onboard loungewear.

With local designers on the rise, Etihad has chosen to cultivate home-grown talent. The competition aims to engage four designers who specialise in loungewear and will see Rowdah Al Shaafar (of A Friend of Mine by Xpoze), Manaal Al Hammadi (of Manaal Al Hammadi), Asma Al Matrooshi (of Epiphany) and Aiisha Al Marri (of 1981 Boutique) compete for the contract to design Etihad’s sleepwear.

The sleepwear will be presented to passengers in First and The Residence onboard the Airbus A380, by the first quarter of 2018.

The winner will be chosen based on comfort, style and wearability post-flight, and must involve strong Emirati and UAE influences, working with traditional patterns, accents and local colours. It must be contemporary and trendy.

Linda Celestino, Etihad Airways vp guest experience and delivery, says: “As the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, and with our sponsorship of 17 international Fashion Weeks, engaging local designers and audiences is the logical step for us, and this is the perfect platform to do so. I cannot wait to see what these incredible designers have in store for us.”

Singapore focuses on provenance

October 17, 2017

Singapore Airlines has launched a new “From Farm to Plane” concept to promote environmental sustainability and support local farmers’ communities through its inflight food and beverage offerings.

The strategy means the airline will be using fish from fisheries certified by the Marine Stewardship Council for their sustainable fishing practices, and obtaining produce from local farms in countries the airline serves. The airline will use more sustainable and meatless ingredients, as well as local produce, working with partners overseas to source such ingredients.

In addition, the airline’s International Culinary Panel (ICP) of world-renowned chefs will focus on sustainable ingredients such as cherry tomatoes, pumpkins, green beans and lettuce. The new menus will initially be introduced to Suites customers on selected routes from later this year, and will progressively be made available to customers travelling in other classes.

Marvin Tan, Singapore Airlines’ senior vp product & service, says: “Our food and beverage sustainability efforts will further demonstrate and reinforce Singapore Airlines’ ongoing efforts to help reduce our carbon footprint and ensure a greener environment. While we continue to deliver a quality in-flight dining experience, we would also like our customers to know that we are playing our part in ensuring sustainability.”

SPIRIANT gets Smartium

October 17, 2017

SPIRIANT is now supplying Premium Economy amenity kits to Asiana Airlines in the Smartium cabin featured on the carrier’s newest A350 aircraft.

The kits were created using a holistic and culturally inclusive approach. They include luxurious slippers with a focus on cleanliness and feet protection, key concerns on the Asian market. In addition, the pouch contains a dental-hygiene set and eyeshade.

Angie Fung, SPIRIANT’s general manager for amenity kits, says: “We’re honoured to embark on this collaboration with Asiana with a groundbreaking move for the Premium Economy arena. We are always looking to delve into undiscovered territory, particularly with amenity kits, so this project has been both eye-opening and interesting.”

SPIRIANT has a dedicated amenity-kit business unit in Hong Kong where the team is on a mission to create innovative kits with powerful collaborations behind them.

Bedding upgrade for Qantas

October 17, 2017

Galileo Watermark has collaborated with Qantas to launch a luxurious bedding range for First designed exclusively by Australia’s premium home and lifestyle brand, Sheridan.

The new bedding range marks the first stage of Qantas’ major A380 fleet cabin upgrade, including refurbished First class suites with new contoured cushioning and a larger, higher-resolution entertainment screen.

The Sheridan bedding ensemble has been crafted using natural, luxury materials in neutral and soft earthy tones to match the First Class cabin interior.

For the first time, customers will able to choose from a pillow menu featuring: Ultimate Comfort Pillow, Memory Foam Pillow and Feather & Down Pillow. The ensemble also includes a memory foam mattress, super-soft Sheridan sheeting, a duvet cover made from soft-touch tencel, a 100% combed-cotton woven throw and a soft-touch bolster cushion.

Sheridan has also designed a soft baby blanket in pure cotton for infants aged under two years of age travelling on all international services in all cabins.

The bedding is being rolled out progressively onto A380 services to London, Dubai, Los Angeles and Dallas/Fort Worth.

LSG goes green with ANZ

October 11, 2017

LSG Sky Chefs has teamed up with Air New Zealand and the New Zealand Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) to tackle inflight waste from Air New Zealand’s international services arriving in Auckland.

The waste reduction initiative “Project Green” is expected to divert 150 tons of waste from landfill annually. It has already enabled 40 Air New Zealand inflight products previously sent to landfill due to biosecurity controls, to be reclassified so they can be reused on future flights if removed from aircraft sealed and untouched.

Products approved to date include sealed beverages and unopened snacks with further items expected to be added in coming months. In the first month of running Project Green across Air New Zealand’s international fleet, 13 tons of waste, including 266,000 plastic cups, 480 kg of sugar packets and 3.5 tons of bottled water were diverted.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) data estimates the global industry generated 5.2m tons of inflight waste in 2016. While Air New Zealand has always been waste-conscious, quarantine controls have presented challenges to recycling initiatives in the past.

LSG Sky Chefs New Zealand general manager Pieter Harting says: “Our role in Project Green is to ensure items taken off aircraft are sorted correctly and meet the standards we’ve agreed with MPI and Air New Zealand, before reloading trolleys with approved items for the next service. It’s been an exciting journey for us, requiring a big culture shift and getting our people onboard with new ways of working.”

New Nordic rolls out

October 11, 2017

SAS has expanded its pre-order food service to SAS Go passengers with a range that includes vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free and lactose-free options.

An evolution of the “New Nordic by SAS” programme launched for travellers in SAS Plus, the concept focuses on locally-sourced products and seasonal ingredients.

The pre-order option is available on flights within Europe and Scandinavia of at least two hours’ duration.

“We want to be able to offer our guests onboard a tailored experience,” says Therese Lorenius, head of product & services at SAS. “We want them to be able to eat according to their lifestyle while they are onboard with us. So we are pleased to be introducing the opportunity for our passengers in SAS Go to pre-order food from our new and wider range within Europe.”

The food is served through the New Nordic by SAS concept is inspired by take-out culture. All meals come packed in a cube, making it easy to eat while working, reading or watching a movie.

Pre-ordering is the only way to guarantee this food, which must be purchased in advance. The meals can be pre-ordered at least 18 hours before departure, at the time of booking, and cost EUR 11.

Also new to the mix is a non-pork option and mini pizza which is lacto-ovo vegetarian (pizza is priced at EUR 6).

A proper brew for MSC Cruise

October 11, 2017

Following a nationwide vote, MSC Cruises, the world’s largest privately-owned cruise line, has chosen Yorkshire Tea to be served onboard MSC Magnifica through 2018.

Over 1,000 Brits were asked to vote in an online social media poll which led to the selection of the popular brand for all onboard bars and restaurants and, in a first for the company, also in cabins along with a kettle, coffee, milk and sugar.

Other enhancements being made to the onboard product includes the addition of British and Irish beer and cider on draft, and favourite big-brand condiments including HP Sauce, Colmans Mustard and Marmite.

Flying Food Group HNL welcomes QANTAS

October 11, 2017

Flying Food Group in Honolulu is now catering five QANTAS flights a week between Honolulu and Sydney.

According to longtime QANTAS head of operations Richard Allison, the launch of service was the airline’s “most successful first flight”.

Nicolas Rondeau, FFG executive vp airline sales, praised the Honolulu team and added that QANTAS also taps FFG at Los Angeles and San Francisco. QANTAS has been an FFG customer since 2007, Rondeau said.

Customer Experience Award goes Red

October 11, 2017

Red Funnel, the Isle of Wight ferry specialist, has won first place in the UK Customer Experience Awards, within the travel, leisure and hospitality sector.

The annual event honours UK companies which have demonstrated leadership in delivering superior customer experiences.

Kevin George, Red Funnel’s ceo, commented: “Being recognised at this level is a real honour. We take tremendous pride in what we do and we like to think we’re doing a good job, but to hear it from our customers and now to be acknowledged by industry experts is a tremendous compliment. Our staff work tirelessly to make the crossing to and from the Isle of Wight a warm and memorable experience for our customers, so this award truly belongs to them. I could not be prouder of their achievement.”

The award came as Red Funnel announced a £3m refurbishment of its ro-pax ferry, Red Eagle. In an effort to further elevate the onboard customer experience, the project will deliver a significant increase in the number of interior seats, upgraded facilities and a modern new look to match sister vessels Red Osprey and Red Falcon. Renovations will start in January 2018 and be completed in time for the summer timetable starting 29 March.

Bedding upgrade for American Airlines

October 2, 2017

American Airlines has unveiled a new suite of bedding designed to create a new ‘sleep experience’ in Business and First through an innovative partnership with bedding specialist Casper.

The suite of products will go onboard in December and will include a mattress seat pad, duvet, pillow, day blanket, lumber support, pyjamas and slippers. The roll out will be supported by WESSCO.

Casper studied the travel environment for months to better understand the challenges of inflight sleep, researched more than a dozen versions of the onboard pillow, and tested it with a variety of fibres to find the perfect balance of support and breathability for customers.

Inspired by performance outerwear, Casper’s signature duvet and the onboard duvet are created to provide comfort at all altitudes, and its sewn-through seams create small, rectangular chambers for a consistent fill distribution helping it stay fluffy and in place.

Casper co-founder and ceo, Philip Krim, said: “Our mission has always been to create products that help people dream their way to a better life. In collaboration with American, we are now able to apply our expertise in sleep science to redefine comfort and sleep in flight.”

FORMIA does the business for Brussels

October 2, 2017

FORMIA has launched a new-look onboard amenity kit for Brussels Airlines featuring the well-known luxury bag brand Mandarina Duck.

Inspired from Mandarina Duck’s Tank Collections, the new design will appear in Business. The bag will be offered as a red zip pouch with piped design construction, yellow rubber patch logo and contrasting yellow interior.

The contents will be supplied by cosmetic brand Institut Karité, known for its Shea products, and will include items from their Verbana line. The updated design reflects Brussels Airlines’ aim to offer an innovatively appealing product that enhances the passenger’s travelling experience.

Roland Grohmann, ceo & managing partner of FORMIA says: “FORMIA is always looking for innovative new ways to enhance its range of bespoke amenities. This includes capitalising on our own creativity to improve our existing collection of luxury inflight amenities. The new one-style look of the Mandarina Duck amenity kit speaks to that goal.”

Flying Food Group KOA starts JAL service

October 2, 2017

Flying Food Group KOA is now servicing daily JAL flights between Kona, Hawaii and Tokyo Narita.

According to FFG executive vp of marketing, Nicolas Rondeau, the new route successfully launched on September 15.

FFG HNL caters six flights daily for JAL, which has been an FFG customer at Honolulu since 2011. FFG has catered JAL out of New York JFK since 2001, and also caters JAL out of Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Rondeau added that FFG’s Honolulu kitchen recently received the 2016 JAL Meal Quality Award for Medium Haul (worldwide).

Beverage retail fizzing

October 2, 2017

Beverage research specialist IWSR has released data on the top 20 Champagne and sparkling wine brands in travel retail.

Moët & Chandon and Veuve Clicquot were ranked first and second with Bottega Prosecco ranked third in the global travel retail market. Bottega’s ‘Il Vino dell’Amore Petalo Moscato’ (a sweet sparkling Moscato) was also in the top 10 – ranked ninth.

Bottega has been in the market for 30 years, starting with artistic, blown glass bottles of grappa, and eye-catching distillates and liqueurs, and its sparkling range have been crucial to its success. Amongst the range of Bottega sparkling wines, Bottega Gold – the iconic gilded bottle – is immediately recognizable and appreciated for its elegance and personality.

Bottega products are listed in the catalogues of more than 50 airlines and globally present at all of the most important duty free shops. Over the past 12 months, the sales volume generated by DF and TR business has increased +10% compared to the previous year – and the same rate is expected for the next year.

Eurostar add cocktail menu

October 2, 2017

Eurostar has launched a range of new winter cocktails for Business Premier passengers waiting in its Paris lounge.

Designed by the London Cocktail Club and Michelin star chef Raymond Blanc OBE, the bespoke cocktails feature high quality ingredients including French spirits such as pastis and Côtes de Provence rosé and typical British ingredients such as cucumber juice and fresh rosemary. The drinks are designed to suit tastes on either side of the Channel.

For those looking for something lighter, Michelin star chef and Eurostar Business Premier culinary director, Raymond Blanc OBE, has designed two non-alcoholic cocktails. Named the Mellow Mojito and The Zester, the drinks are a virgin take on the Cuban classic and the spritz.

These drinks are a welcome addition to the menu, which currently features Eurostar’s signature cocktail, Angelique. The tipple contains Eurostar’s very own gin, Toujours 21, which was designed by Raymond Blanc and created by Silent Pool Distillers. It is a delightful fusion of French botanicals and honey from the Kent countryside.

Festival flavours for Oktoberfest

September 20, 2017

UK carrier bmi regional has themed it onboard offer during September to include a traditional Bavarian welcome, as the airline celebrates Munich’s Oktoberfest.

For the duration of Munich’s famous beer festival, flights to and from Munich from Southampton will include traditional Oktoberfest delicacies such as heart shaped Lebkuchen and tasty beers. Many cabin crew serving on Munich flights will be wearing traditional Bavarian dress, including lederhosen for men and dirndls for women.

Once on the ground, the fun continues with bmi regional’s car hire partner, Sixt. During Oktoberfest, the car hire company is also getting into the festival spirit, with staff sporting dirndls and lederhosen in bright orange brand colour.

Oktoberfest is Germany’s biggest annual festival of beer, showcasing some 545 stalls selling everything from beers and wines to food and gifts. The event is open all day every day and includes designated family fun days each Tuesday.

LSG extends Alaska contract

September 20, 2017

LSG Group has extended its system-wide contract with Alaska Airlines (AS) for another three years. The agreement covers 40 airports in the U.S. and Mexico with an average of 3,100 flights per week.

Alaska Airlines is a longstanding customer of the LSG Group that has grown significantly over the years. Since acquiring Virgin America (VX) in 2016, it has become the fifth-largest airline in the U.S.

LSG Group manages the product design, equipment warehousing and distribution for both AS and VX and also provides shelf-stable boxes and the vast majority of their catering services.

“We have successfully positioned ourselves as an innovative business partner and are supporting AS and VX as they move forward with redesigning their airline by combining the two carriers,” said Dale Messling, LSG Group Key Account Manager AS. “We look forward to further opportunities by offering our future-oriented concepts, which include our Retail inMotion solutions, continued support through SPIRIANT and our Oakfield Farms box solutions.”

Formia adds luxury for Singapore

September 20, 2017

FORMIA has confirmed an agreement with new customer Singapore Airlines to supply luxury onboard amenity kits for First passengers.

Under the terms of the contract, FORMIA will bring a range of high quality, Lalique-branded bags individually designed for male and female travellers.

Bearing the Lalique name and famous rondial birds logo, each bag reflects the brand’s elegant style and quality.The bags will contain a selection of cosmetic items.

FORMIA managing director, Roland Grohmann, comments: “Naturally, we are absolutely delighted to welcome Singapore Airlines, one of the world’s most respected airlines, to the list of our valued customers. This contract is an outstanding example of FORMIA’s service “sweet spot” in operation: with Singapore and Lalique, we have brought together two of the world’s greatest luxury brands in a unique collaboration which beautifully reflects both companies’ approach to matchless quality and customer delighting. That is what FORMIA specialises in and this announcement exemplifies our approach which places top priority on the pleasure, comfort and delight of our customers’ passengers.”

FORMIA lays on the style for Air Astana

September 12, 2017

FORMIA has launched inflight amenity kits for Air Astana’s long and short haul Business passengers featuring a collaboration with luxury fashion and style brands Christian Lacroix and Furla.

The Christian Lacroix bags are designed to embody the spirit of the famous Parisian designer known for his flamboyant prints and bold use of colour. They also feature the company’s signature butterfly pattern.

The Furla women’s bag also reflects the brand’s style as a miniature version of its handbags, including the quintessential Furla gold zip pull.

Each kit includes a pair of slippers, making a luxurious alternative to the usual socks.

FORMIA managing director, Roland Grohmann, said: “At FORMIA, we know from several years of working with our partners at Air Astana that it is an airline which focuses on design excellence, high quality and innovation. It gives us great pleasure to be supplying these uber-luxury branded bags and we congratulate Air Astana on maintaining its leading edge reputation for quality and innovation.”

Yelena Obukhova, Air Astana’s Director Inflight Product, said: “The brands’ attributes are superbly and very neatly represented in these new Christian Lacroix and Furla bags. We thank FORMIA for bringing us such premium labels which cannot fail to delight passengers with their unrivalled style and luxury in a practical product with the potential for many after-flight uses.”

New-look tabards from Russums

September 12, 2017

Russums, supplier of catering and hospitality clothing, has launched a new range of hybrid wrap tunic tabards.

Designed specifically for catering and hospitality workers, the new polyester cotton tabards feature a centre pocket and are available in a range of colours, including on-trend fuchsia pink and purple.

Front and back ties aim to combine comfort and style and are a reworking of the classic tabard. Items can be embroidered to suit customer needs. They are available in sizes small to extra large.

Austrian adds Premium Economy

September 12, 2017

Austrian Airlines is introducing a Premium Economy cabin on all its long-haul routes from March 2018.

The airline is refitting its entire fleet of B767 aircraft, with the new Premium Economy cabin featuring wider seats with a 38-inch pitch, footrests, 12-inch IFE screens and USB power points. The new seat was produced for the Lufthansa Group by aircraft seat manufacturer ZIM.

Passengers will also benefit from a larger checked luggage allowance, amenity kits and enhanced dining.

Tickets for the new class are now on sale for flights from March 6, 2018.

“The new Premium Economy Class is an important milestone in our strategy aimed at linking the issue of individualisation with quality,” says Austrian Airlines CCO Andreas Otto.

“The customer can individually choose the travel class according to her or his needs, whether the preference is to fly in a price-conscious manner in Economy Class, treat oneself to a little more service and comfort in Premium Economy or luxury travel in Business Class.”

MNH wins Etihad’s contract

September 12, 2017

MNH has been awarded a new contract with Etihad Airways to provide a consolidated laundry service spanning Europe and Australasia.

Initially covering five major ports, MNH will deliver procurement efficiencies and a single point of contact whilst managing daily operational service levels.

Operating as an extension to the inflight service team, MNH’s global network and specialist laundry management IT platform, ROTIX, will standardise Etihad’s laundry supply chain, driving costs down by reducing wash volumes and inventory usage.

MNH continues to expand its global laundry reach adding Etihad to a long list of premium carriers looking to reduce resource cost and improve management information in this area.

The power of the press

September 5, 2017

Everyone loves a success story and at Onboard Hospitality we have been excited to see just how successful specialist companies can be once they get onboard.

We’re always on the look out for newcomers to the industry, love to champion their cause and watch their progress as their business soars, so it was with great pride that we received the following from Mr Lee’s noodles, now flying onboard Jetstar with other exciting onboard contracts imminent.

Kasia Bigda, marketing and communication director at Mr Lee’s Pure Foods Co, said: “A huge “thank-you” to Onboard Hospitality for featuring us in one of your previous issues. It made a huge impact on our business – you helped to put us on the map! Thanks to just one feature we have won a huge account on the other side of the world. We wouldn’t have got it otherwise!

Commenting on the best way to target the onboard market she added: “If you expect thousands of visits to your website, forget it – you will not get them…but what you need is a few quality ones, which will hopefully bring you thousands of pounds. It is not about how many eyeballs see your message, it is about who these eyeballs belong to!”

Onboard Hospitality publisher, Sue Williams, responded: “We spend a lot of time trying to support newcomers into the market and it is so exciting when those efforts are rewarded. We wish Mr Lee’s much further success and are delighted to have played a small part in their development as an onboard brand.

Find more great onboard brands, or promote your own at

Mood food for Monarch

September 5, 2017

Low-cost carrier Monarch has developed a new experimental snack-box offering of ‘mood-enhancing food’ designed to relax, re-energise and reduce traveller stress.

The ‘Monarch Mood Food’ box was developed in collaboration with leading food psychologist prof. Charles Spence and chef Jozef Youssef of Kitchen Theory.

Prior to take off, passengers are offered black, immunity-boosting echinacea and liquorice ice cream, said to have anti-inflammatory and cell protective abilities; while onboard they receive a blend of herbal tea containing chamomile, fennel seed and kelp to combat bloating and aid digestion; a sweet caramelised nut bar coated in umami rich mushroom and tomato powder to re-energise and awaken the senses as passengers arrive at their destination.

In search for veg-friendly airlines

September 5, 2017

PROVEG International is to rank the world’s most veg-friendly airlines through a product survey.

The ranking will take account of vegetarian/vegan options onboard and in lounges; survey how customer-friendly the available information is; the ease of ordering/extra costs; retail availability; and future intentions of the airlines in this area.

The results (see our November issue) will aim to increase awareness of vegan-related issues and encourage improved inflight offerings.

Buzz gets personal with Delta

August 30, 2017

Delta’s TUMI hard-case amenity kit, based on the company’s popular 19 Degree collection, can now receive complimentary monogramming at most TUMI retail stores post-flight.

The kits will continue to feature Kiehl’s skincare products and will include new amenities such as hand cleanser, a mouthwash stick and TUMI eyeshades, as well as updated striped socks.

The kits will feature hard- and soft-cased TUMI options – a silver hard-sided kit outbound from the U.S. and a soft-sided black amenity kit inbound.

Allison Ausband, Delta’s senior vp inflight service, says: “We are excited to offer customers the ability to monogram their amenity kits and create a personalised souvenir to take with them as they jetset across the globe.”

Customers in the Delta Premium Select cabin, which debuts on Delta’s first Airbus A350 this autumn, will receive a soft TUMI blue pouch which includes Malin+Goetz vitamin B lotion, a dental kit featuring Colgate toothpaste, an eye mask, socks and ear plugs.

Additionally, on international and select long-haul domestic flights, Delta Comfort+ customers receive a Rest and Refresh kit with eye shades, ear plugs and a dental kit featuring Colgate toothpaste, while Main Cabin customers receive kits that include eye shades and ear plugs.

Do&Co lays on a restaurant-style menu for BA

August 30, 2017

British Airways has worked with Do&Co to create a new restaurant-style dining experience in Club World on flights between Heathrow and New York JFK.

Travellers will be able to select freshly-prepared starters and desserts from new display trolleys, which will be served by the crew on to new table settings.

Starters include Loch Fyne smoked salmon tartare with wasabi crème fraîche; burrata and tomato carpaccio with olive oil and balsamic dressing; creamy butternut squash soup with chive and sour cream; and fresh seasonal salad, grilled vegetables and a choice of French dressing or olive oil and balsamic dressing.

Entrees include heritage beef homemade gnocchi in Café de Paris sauce and pan-fried green asparagus; line-caught grilled Cornish Dover sole with Mediterranean lentils, celeriac mousseline and lemon butter; homemade artichoke ravioli Parmesan.

Desserts include DO & CO‘s double chocolate medley, lemon tart, Viennese-style apple strudel with vanilla sauce, fresh strawberries and cheese board with Somerset brie, Keen’s cheddar, Cropwell Bishop stilton, walnuts, grapes and fig chutney.

White wines and Champagnes will be presented on top of the trolleys in large, silver wine coolers, while regiments of red wine bottles stand alongside.

Colin Talbot, British Airways’ head of catering, said: “We’ve really focused on attention to detail with the new Club World menu, with the aim of delivering a real restaurant experience in the sky. We’ve considered everything from flavours and textures, to look and feel, all of which have to work at altitude. The dishes are designed to pop with taste and the table settings are both elegant and practical, with thought-through details such as stemless wine glasses.”

Aeroflot to present new Business menu

August 30, 2017

Aeroflot is developing new inflight menus inspired by the winners of the first High Flyers Culinary Competition, held to discover new names in gastronomy.

The competition, held in association with the Russian Restaurant Festival, saw eight chefs from five cities – Moscow, St Petersburg, Sochi, Novosibirsk and Vladivostok, prepare three hot meal suggestions for Aeroflot Business passengers including a fish dish, a vegetarian dish and a final dish of either meat or poultry.

The menus were evaluated by a professional jury including restauranteurs Boris Zarkov and Ilya Tyutenkov, culinary critics Alexander Ilyin and Svetlana Kesoyan, and Russian Restaurant Festival organiser Alexander Susov, with Evgeny Vikentev, head chef at Wine Cabinet and Hamlet + Jacks in St Petersburg announced as the winner.

Internationally acclaimed chefs, including Michelin-starred ones, have traditionally helped develop Aeroflot’s menu but now the airline is focused on pursuing new and creative ideas from new Russian talents.

Festival founder, Alexander Sysoev, said: “Chefs from all cities demonstrated a very high level of skill, and more and more new names are appearing every year. We are pleased that Aeroflot has entrusted us to develop High Flyers, which we believe will help talented chefs express themselves in Russia and globally.”

Gulf Air inherits 1960’s uniform sketch

August 30, 2017

An original, signed sketch by the late Joy Stokes, designer of Gulf Air’s cabin crew uniform, was recently donated by her son to the national carrier.

The sketch, which now appears in the airline’s Gulf Air Falcon Gold Lounge at Bahrain International Airport, demonstrates how Stokes defined the look of the airline: from the turtle collar dress and pillbox style beret, to the then revolutionary concept of outfitting both male and female cabin crew in trousers.

Today, a version of the original Middle Eastern headscarf is still worn by female crew.

Joy’s son Michael Stokes, who donated the sketch said: “Joy Stokes was inspired by the brilliant light and vibrant colours of Bahrain and the Gulf. She loved wandering in the souqs and markets of Bahrain where she could derive ideas for her designs and drawings. She shared her passion for Bahrain with her husband, Jimmy Stokes, a captain with Gulf Aviation/Air who joined the airline in 1961.”

He added: “Joy would be deeply humbled and honored by the recognition that Gulf Air is providing to her in prominently displaying her original uniform design in the Gulf Air Falcon Gold lounge. As a family we are privileged and delighted by the enduring link with Gulf Air and Bahrain that this represents.”

Alitalia adds new kit

August 23, 2017

Alitalia has launched a new Premium Economy kit developed by Galileo Watermark.

The neoprene kit is is designed to be re-used post-flight either as a smartphone case or to store small personal belongings.

Each kit contains a luxurious moisturiser and lip balm from Scaramouche + Fandango, socks, comb, earplugs and a fun double-sided eye mask which passengers can use to let the crew know whether they would like to sleep or be woken up.

Qantas refreshes Country Road connection

August 23, 2017

Qantas has launched a new design for its Premium Economy amenity kits, refreshing the established partnership with Australian lifestyle brand Country Road.

Galileo Watermark has worked with Country Road to develop the new kit which replaces the iconic black and white gingham print previously onboard.

The new canvas bag features a stylish and simple modern design which aims to capture the essence of the authentic Australian way of life. The kit also includes a matching Country Road-branded eye mask, black socks and dental kit.

Oceania Cruises introduces La Cuisine Bourgeoise

August 23, 2017

Oceania Cruises has unveiled a new epicurean, seven-course menu focused on fresh, seasonal ingredients.

The menu has been created by executive culinary director, master chef Jacques Pépin, to provide passengers with a traditional taste of mid-twentieth century Paris, with each dish being expertly paired with a different wine.

The menu starts with kir royal (Champagne with crème de cassis), and is followed by veloute reine-margot (poultry cream with vegetable julienne and pistachio diamonds); soufflé de homard plaza athénée (Maine lobster and cheese soufflé); filet de sole brillat-savarin (Dover sole fillet with crustacean mousse and French black truffles); filet de boeuf rôti richelieu (
roasted beef tenderloin with stuffed mushrooms, tomatoes, braised lettuce, château potatoes and madeira sauce); brie de meaux aux noix et laitue (nut-crusted brie de meaux with Boston lettuce hearts); omelette siberienne (baked Alaska with Williams pears and chestnut ice cream). It is finished with petits fours and chouquette aux pralines roses (Parisian-style pink praline cream puffs).

“Oceania Cruises is all about feeling and emotion, so I am especially pleased with what Jacques has created with La Cuisine Bourgeoise. Imagine being transported back to the halcyon days of the Hôtel Plaza Athenee in Paris, enjoying a celebratory meal with great friends. This is an experience you cannot have anywhere else and one that will create memories for a lifetime. It is the epitome of special,” stated Bob Binder, president & ceo of Oceania Cruises.

La Cuisine Bourgeoise is now available aboard Marina and Riviera.

ANA presents ‘Tastes of Japan’

August 23, 2017

All Nippon Airways (ANA) is treating passengers to a taste of Japan’s lesser-known prefectures as part of its ‘Tastes of Japan’ campaign.

From September through to November 2017, ANA passengers will experience culinary cuisines from Hyogo, Iwate and Okinawa, in a bid to expand the profile of Japan’s vast cuisine and boost consumption of regional agricultural products.

Passengers travelling Business on international flights will be offered Hittsumi, a local dish from Hyogo featuring flour dumplings in a broth, served with locally-caught salmon and wheat bran (nanbu-fu). They also have the option of agu pork in a moromi bowl, originating from Okinawa which is known for its sweet and juicy pork. Customers flying in November will be served a lightly-smoked Tajima sukoyaka chicken sauté with a kobe red wine sauce.

The ANA suite lounge dining restaurant at Haneda Airport has also updated its menu to showcase the three destinations. Passengers can sample ANA original parfaits Iwate made using Iwate’s famous Shinsekai apples, a refreshing desert of Okinawa-grown shequasar with herb jelly or Hyogo’s gokoku-manju (five grained steam buns) with Akashi sea bream accompanied by a soup made with onions and mushrooms. There is also the chance to sample Japanese sake and shochu spirits in the lounges.

LSG Group enters new partnership with GOL

August 15, 2017

The LSG Group has announced a new catering partnership with GOL Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes, providing for all national and international flights departing São Paulo International Airport (GRU) as of this month.

The partnership includes the provision of the items sold through the GOL onboard retail programme on domestic flights including gluten-free, lactose-free and vegan options, alcoholic beverages and hot meals.

The agreement also includes catering GOL’s international flights departing from GRU, as well as the delivery logistics of the “Mãe Terra” organic snacks distributed free on domestic flights.

With 760 daily flights within Latin America and the Caribbean, the Brazilian airline, GOL has a 36 percent share of the national market, with Gyarulhos International Airport being one of the carrier’s main hubs.

LSG has worked with GOL since 2001 when the airline launched its operations, and supported the introduction of the first onboard retail programme in the country in 2006.

JAL award for Flying Food Group

August 15, 2017

Flying Food Group’s Honolulu kitchen (HNL) has earned the 2016 JAL Meal Quality Award (Medium Haul).

The JAL awards recognise excellence in three categories with these worldwide award: Small, Medium and Large Haul.

FFG HNL caters six flights daily for JAL which has been a FFG customer at Honolulu since 2011. FFG has also catered JAL out of New York since 2001 and also caters FFG out of Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

New recipes from Pandaw

August 15, 2017

Pandaw River Expeditions has unveiled a new range of recipes to be rolled out across its fleet designed to appeal to well-travelled and food-fanatical passengers.

The recipes, each inspired by indigenous cuisine and sourced locally, have been created by location specific food and beverage managers in keeping with the brand’s emphasis on culinary experiences.

In Burma passengers will be offered dishes such as Myanmar tea leaf & ginger salad and local river prawn ravioli with basil foam. Diners cruising Halong Bay and Red River will sample authentic chicken, scallop and banana blossom salad (Goi bap chuoi, so va ga) and locally inspired entrees such as chargrilled free-range pork belly marinated in coriander seeds, black pepper and oyster sauce (Thit heo nuong). The wine list has also been refreshed to suit the climate and cuisine.

Qantas adds designer tableware

August 9, 2017

Qantas has unveiled a new range of inflight tableware by Australian industrial designer, David Caon. The range includes crockery by Noritake, cutlery and glassware.

Caon is lead designer of the Qantas 787 Dreamliner cabin interiors and collaborated with Qantas creative director food, beverage & service, Neil Perry, to create tableware that is modern, lightweight and practical for First, Business and Premium Economy and the Qantas lounges. The result is an elegant, 16-piece crockery set in fine bone china, a five-piece brush-finished stainless steel cutlery setting and a collection of modern glassware.

Caon’s objective when designing the new tableware was to combine minimal, classic elegance with quality and functionality. “There is a fine balance between finding ingenious ways of making a product lighter and compromising its utility or quality,” said Caon.

“We’ve taken key design cues from the 787 interiors as our inspiration for the tableware. Straight lines were minimised in the design with the same 800mm curve applied to each object in a way to soften and humanise. This organically geometric aesthetic lends continuity of design across the range and to the aircraft,” he added.

Qantas group executive brand marketing & corporate affairs, Olivia Wirth, said the 787 Dreamliner had given Qantas the opportunity to re-design the entire travel experience. The range will be on board Qantas flights from the first 787 Dreamliner service from Melbourne to Los Angeles on 15 December, and will progressively roll out to the remainder of the Qantas fleet.

LSG extends with Sichuan

August 9, 2017

LSG Group has extended its joint venture contract with Sichuan Airlines in Chengdu, China, for a further 20 years, too 2037.

Sichuan Airlines LSG Catering was founded in 2000 to provide catering services at the Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport (CTU), the major international airport in China’s Sichuan Province (southwestern China).

Today, 300 employees at the centre deliver services to an average of 120 flights per day for 29 airlines, including hub carriers Sichuan Airlines, Chengdu Airlines and China Southern Airlines. The contract extension secures the company’s partnership at the existing airport but also its presence at the new Chengdu Tianfu International Airport, which is expected to begin operations in 2023.

Having handled more than 46 million passengers in 2016, CTU is ranked among the world’s top 30 busiest airports and the fourth busiest in mainland China. It has enormous growth potential (there are 15 million inhabitants in the Chengdu area) and a strong economic pull (more than 260 Fortune 500 companies have established branches in Chengdu).

“This long-term extension is proof of the mutual trust and solid cooperation that we have established with Sichuan Airlines over the past 17 years,” said HK Cheung, LSG Group’s rcoo Asia-Pacific, during the contract signing ceremony. “We are excited about further expanding our activities along with the prosperous development taking place at this strategic and highly important location.”

Loganair flies the tartan

August 9, 2017

Loganair has unveiled a new look – with tartan tails for its aircraft and original tartan uniforms for its cabin crew and ground staff.

The airline has adopted the bold image as it starts flying under its own name again from September 1 after 23 years of operating under franchise agreements with other carriers.

The first passenger aircraft to fly in the novel Loganair black, red and white colours – a Saab 340B named Spirit of Caithness – is now operating flights around the airline’s extensive network in Scotland. A further 15 aircraft will receive a make-over in the coming weeks.

The unique “Loganair Tartan” has become entry number 11,744 on the official Scottish Register of Tartans.

New uniforms for all of Loganair’s staff have also been unveiled, in a collaboration with Paisley-based Matrix Uniforms.

Loganair’s managing director Jonathan Hinkles said: “The bold image means that we’ll immediately be recognised as Scotland’s airline wherever we fly, whether we’re landing in Manchester, Bergen or the Outer Hebrides.“

Matrix Uniforms, established in 2000, manufactures all of its garments in Scotland.

NIKI canvases opinion

August 9, 2017

Tourist airline, NIKI, is offering holidaymakers a new selection of inflight menus with the chance for 150 people to select and test their preferred meal free of charge. During August, anyone who has booked their holiday flight with NIKI can become a food tester.

The new menu includes a spicy sandwich with cheddar, caramelised onion chutney and salad; a panini with BBQ chicken; a light quinoa and vegetable salad with Asian lime dressing; or rigatoni in a creamy tomato sauce with courgette, aubergine, mozzarella and Grana Padano.

Passengers are to rate which dishes they enjoy and also have the opportunity to submit their own suggestions, to help the carrier evolve its autum/winter range.

New investors for Gastro Culinary Innovation

August 1, 2017

Heinemann-Scorpio International Holdings (HSIH), owner of inflight specialist Scorpio Worldwide, has bought a majority stake in Gastro Culinary Innovation (GCI).

GCI provides sales, marketing and distribution services for a range of non-competing high street brands, as well as developing and sourcing its own branded artisan savoury and sweet onboard snacks.The company is managed by directors Jacqui Davidson and Caroline Thompson, guided by Lance Hayward, ex Alpha LSG, as a non-executive director.

Stuart McGuire, chairman of HSIH and CEO of Scorpio Worldwide Ltd said: “It is clear that there are great opportunities to develop both the complimentary and buy on board offer for the travel food service sector including inflight, cruising, ferries and rail services, an area we have been looking at for a while. GCI are highly respected within the trade, and are already serving the major airlines and caterers in the UK and overseas. We believe that with the GCI product and sales expertise, and our brand management and access to market, we can grow quickly into this rapidly developing sector.”

Jacqui Davidson, director of GCI, said: “We are very excited to be able to take our business to the next level through this partnership. Buy-on-board food to date can be limited and viewed by many travellers only as a necessity not a ‘cannot resist’ choice! Through experience, out-of-the-box thinking and pure passion, we are proud to share our talent for identifying new trends and creating inventive ways of bringing culinary and boutique excellence to the paying passenger. The new partnership means we have the support and expertise of a large group behind us, freeing us up to fulfil our ambition to provide great food onboard tailored to client and customer expectation.”

Kaelis shows that disposable linen can be eco-friendly

August 1, 2017

In an effort to promote its range of disposable cotton linen products, Kaelis has released some facts and figures about the environmental impact of rotables.

The Spanish company’s range of disposable 100% cotton linen products includes napkins, coasters and tray mats which are 33% lighter than rotable linen and the new research it has released highlights the positive environmental impact associated with disposables.

Kaelis has divided the benefits of disposable linen into three separate issues: weight, land logistics and washing/drying cycles.

Each rotable product can be washed up to 20 times and Kaelis has found that by not washing, drying, ironing and transporting linen to and from laundry facilities companies can save 10,160 litres of washing liquids, 1,600,000 litres of water, 10,400 kilowatts of electricity and 18,824 litres of fuel.

A reduction in CO2, HC, NO and CO emissions is achieved in the air due to weight savings and on the ground due to less transportation.

Ancillary earnings are on the up

August 1, 2017

The latest report on ancillary revenue from consumer research company IdeaWorks shows that total ancillary revenue from the top ten earning airlines has risen from $2.1 billion to more than $28 billion in 10 years.

The research, sponsored by Car Trawler, reveals the top ten airlines for 2016 and sees US airlines holding up the top four, starting with United ($6,222,000,000 total revenue), followed by Delta, American and Southwest. Air France/KLM come fifth followed by Ryanair, easyJet, Lufthansa Network, Qantas and Air Canada respectively.

The research also details how most of the top ten airlines earn their place on the table through their frequent flyer programme – generated by the sale of miles or points to banks that issue a carrier’s co-branded credit card.

Ryanair and easyJet are the exception, each generating their ancillary revenue exclusively through a la carte fees and the commissions earned from travel retail activities at the website, such as car hire bookings and travel insurance sales.

The report also looked at the top ten airlines ancillary revenue as a percentage of total revenue, allowing low-cost carriers to shine. US carrier Spirit Airlines headlined the list (46.4%), followed by Frontier (42.4%), Allegiant (40%), Wizz Air (39.4%), Ryanair (26.8%), (26%), Volaris (24.3%), Hong Kong Express (24%), Jetstar (22%) and Pegasus (22%).

Commenting on the top 10 ranking, Pegasus Airlines ceo Mehmet T. Nane said: “We can attribute much of this success to our mission at Pegasus to transform the company into a full travel brand that answers all guests’ travel needs with a door to door experience beyond ticketing, including providing transfers to the airport and accommodation.

“Our strategy moving forward is to continue with our products and services such as seat selection, pre-order meal, package fares, excess baggage, car rental, travel insurance and freeze the price – but also to continue expanding on this model with more innovative and affordable products that prioritise convenience such as the Pegasus Flex Product, the new Business Flex flight package and Private/Shared Airport Transfers.”

AIX Long Beach almost sold out

August 1, 2017

Exhibition space for the Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX) in Long Beach, California is 90% sold with almost 100 days until the show commences.

This year’s event takes place September 26-28 at the Long Beach Convention Centre, California, and is co-located with the APEX Expo and IFSA Conference & Expo.

Katie Murphy, senior exhibitor director at Reed Exhibitions, said: “To have virtually all of the exhibition space already sold is testament to the growing popularity of the only fall event dedicated to the passenger services industry.

“AIX Long Beach brings together APEX, IFSA and AIX into a powerful partnership and to have generated so much interest already gives us great confidence that it is quickly becoming established as the must-attend event for the passenger experience industry in the fall.”

The co-located passenger experience event showcases the latest innovation, technologies and products in the industry, such as galleys, lighting, cabin management systems, IFEC and passenger services.

The event will welcome more than 300 exhibitors from a wide range of renowned companies including Acro Aircraft Seating, Avio Interiors, Diehl, Gogo, Inmarsat, Isovalta, Panasonic, Geven and Thales.

Joe & Seph’s appears on UK news

August 1, 2017

British popcorn specialist and onboard supplier Joe & Seph’s has been featured on prime time UK news talking about the impact of Brexit on its business.

Following a report that the UK’s growth forecast for this year has been downgraded by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), from 2.0% to 1.7%, Joe & Seph’s Adam Sopher was interviewed by ITV news on the factory floor.

Representing small British business, Sopher pointed out that a weak pound meant popcorn is now much cheaper for overseas customers to buy and Joe & Seph’s are exporting more gourmet popcorn than ever. However, Sopher also identified a disadvantage in the form of more costly overseas ingredients such as Belgium chocolate.

Overall, Sopher was positive but concerned that the lack of an agreement on what Brexit will look like could start to hurt exports.

You can see the full report, here:

Laundress debuts on Singapore

July 26, 2017

Upmarket fabric care range, The Laundress, has partnered with Singapore Airlines in an exclusive first-to-market collaboration brokered by Buzz.

As part of the airline’s 70th anniversary celebrations, the selection of The Laundress products are being gifted to customers travelling on selected flights out of Singapore in Suites, First and Business Class.

The Laundress is a global company producing eco-friendly detergent, fabric care and home cleaning products and the items available for Singapore Airlines’ premium customers were designed with a traveller’s clothing care needs in mind.

All are travel-sized and items include The Laundress Crease Release, The Laundress Fabric Fresh Classic and The Laundress Wash & Stain Bar all scented in the brand’s signature ‘Classic’ fragrance for a “clean laundry smell”.

Leonard Hamersfeld, director at Buzz, said: “This collaboration brings together two luxury brands and delivers Singapore Airlines’ passengers a valuable and functional lifestyle gift for their journey. It is an exciting collaboration that delivers a truly unique travel product.”

BAC expands in Phuket

July 26, 2017

Bangkok Air Catering (BAC) Phuket has won the contract to provide services for Turkish Airlines, TK172.

With a capacity of 12,000 meals a day, the Phuket unit began operations at Phuket International Airport on June 15 with services for Bangkok Airways. On July 1, Asia Atlantic Airlines and other charter carriers were added.

BAC Phuket is run by a hand-picked team who are dedicated to matching the renowned standards of the parent operation, BAC Bangkok.

Mr Lee’s on Jetstar

July 26, 2017

Mr Lee’s Noodles has teamed up with Australia’s Jetstar Airlines to bring tasty, warm, gluten-free noodles to all passengers throughout Australasia and the Pacific.

Low in calories, salt, sugar and saturated fats, Mr Lee’s ‘Hong Kong Street Beef’ is positioned as an ideal inflight meal for those wanting something healthy and wholesome.

Unlike other instant noodles, the ingredients are gluten-free and include chunky bits of freeze-dried meat and vegetables, meaning all of the nutritional value is locked in.

Mr Lee’s believes oriental flavours shine in onboard catering thanks to their punchy spices and strong sweet and sour tones cutting through the effect of aircraft humdity on the sense of taste and smell.

River cruise flavours go local

July 19, 2017

River cruise operator, Pandaw Expeditions, has unveiled a series of new menus designed to offer fresh, authentic dishes inspired by the Indochina destinations visited on its itineraries.

Using locally-sourced ingredients prepared by onboard chefs, the new menus for the Indochina region have been overseen by Pandaw’s newly-appointed food & beverage manager (Indochina), Brian Woolley.

Born and raised in Australia, Brian has 40 years’ experience having trained and worked in Australia, France, the UK, USA, South America and Southeast Asia. Brian has been the owner of two award-winning restaurants in Australia and his career highlights include time as an executive chef for a number of the five-star Fairmont Hotels & Resorts properties in North America and Canada.

“Sampling the local cuisine and discovering new flavour combinations is one of the best things about travel, as the experience creates lasting memories and inspires cooking techniques to take home and share with friends and family,” says Brian Woolley.

Fantastical Air New Zealand

July 19, 2017

Air New Zealand has teamed up with American actors Katie Holmes and Cuba Gooding Jr. for its latest safety video A Fantastical Journey.

The video is an Alice in Wonderland-inspired adventure featuring a number of iconic locations throughout New Zealand and New Zealand singer and songwriter Gin Wigmore has also recorded her own unique version of the song ‘My Little Corner of the World’ as the backing track.

Katie Holmes says it’s been fun working alongside Cuba Gooding Jr. and the Air New Zealand crew to produce A Fantastical Journey.

Cuba Gooding Jr. says he wanted to get involved in Air New Zealand’s latest safety video as he does a lot of travelling and loves the airline’s fun and different approach. He commented: “They make you laugh, smile and pay a little bit more attention.”

Air New Zealand general manager of global brand and content marketing, Jodi Williams, says: “A Fantastical Journey will put all eyes on New Zealand by showcasing some of the best the country has to offer.

The airline’s safety videos have collectively generated more than 108 million online views to date along with significant international media exposure.

You can view the new video here:

SPIRIANT’s decade in Hong Kong

July 19, 2017

SPIRIANT is celebrating the 10th year anniversary of its operations in Hong Kong.

Opening in the city was the first milestone in SPIRIANT’S “Going Global” initiative, with Hong Kong chosen as a gateway to the largest manufacturing region of the world.

The office has enabled SPIRIANT to interact directly with manufacturers and create synergies in product development and sourcing. It is supported by a product quality team in Shanghai who monitor standards, and now includes a dedicated competence centre with 50 employees who are expert in design, sales, procurement and logistics.

Having started in Hong Kong, SPIRIANT’s global expansion has progressed to include further teams in Dallas, Dubai, Istanbul and Santiago de Chile, in addition to the long-established home base in Neu-Isenburg near Frankfurt, Germany.

“SPIRIANT has successfully evolved from a company which was entirely focused on our parent company Lufthansa to an industry-leading equipment expert serving more than 130 customers worldwide on all continents,” said Erdmann Rauer, ceo of LSG Group. “Our portfolio and expertise in this segment spans from crew and service equipment, smart solutions for leisure travellers, amenity kits and onboard comfort items to individually-designed products to enhance the traveller experience.”

Flying Food Group supports Air India launch

July 19, 2017

Flying Food Group (IAD) is catering Air India’s new Washington D.C. to New Delhi service.

The thrice-weekly route launched on July 7. It is the first direct service between the two capitals.

“This historic new route effectively links two major global destinations,” said Nicolas Rondeau, FFG executive vp of airlines sales. “Air India has been FFG’s customer at EWR, ORD and SFO. We welcome them to IAD. It is affirming when an existing customer chooses FFG catering for an added gate,” he added.

FFG provides catering services to more than 80 airlines — primarily international — from its strategic network of 22 US facilities.

Authentic culinary concepts from Crystal River Cruises

July 12, 2017

Crystal River Cruises has unveiled details of new culinary concepts for Crystal Bach, the first of the company’s Rhine Class river yachts, debuting in August.

Sailing routes along the Rhine, Danube and Main Rivers, the vessel will offer menus inspired by the region and crafted by a team of expert European chefs.

Guests will dine on fresh fish and seafood from Holland, seasonal fruits and vegetables from Germany and the Netherlands, meat and poultry from Bavaria and the Austrian Alps, along with wine, beer and cheese specific to the region. Dutch herring on dill mousse and German green split pea soup with smoked duck join other European delicacies such as Dornfelder braised oxtail ragout, sturgeon caviar from Eindhoven and river crawfish from the Rhine.

Crystal Bach will also feature coffees and teas by Julius Meinl, a prestigious Vienna-based company which has crafted the beverages since 1862.

A new dedicated selection of vegetarian dishes will also be offered aboard Crystal Bach.

“The culinary experience aboard all Crystal vessels is meant to inspire travellers to discover more about the world they explore, as food and the camaraderie of dining is such an integral part of the travel experience,” says Toni Neumeister, senior vice president of hotel operations. “Guests aboard Crystal Bach will not only enjoy extraordinary new and classic flavours, but also a taste of the history and culture of this beautiful region.”

New economy tableware for Lufthansa

July 12, 2017

Lufthansa has introduced new Spiriant-designed tableware for its Economy Class intercontinental flights.

Environmentally friendly and easier to handle than the previous design, Lufthansa says it should appeal to all target groups and stand the test of time when it comes to fashion trends, thanks to “a clear use of form and elegant, consistent design.”

Lufthansa Product Management worked together with designers from the LSG subsidiary company Spiriant to design the new tableware from scratch, using a range of materials, colours, shapes and individual components. Around 900,000 components will go into service worldwide.

The range includes new trays, coffee cups, packaging and accessories, all characterised by faceted shapes. Dynamic lines create shadows which give the tableware different color nuances, depending on the light reflection. Two different surfaces – matt and smooth – ensure a pleasant feel.

Disposable materials will be largely dispensed with, thus significantly reducing volume of waste.

New trays offer more stowage options due to their space-saving design which means that one trolley can accommodate more meals than before.

Slip-resistant materials, like the new anti-skid coating, facilitate handling for the crew. The tray holds the meal in a slightly tilted position and stowing the trays back is also significantly easier.

Matrix partners with BA and The White Company

July 12, 2017

British Airways has partnered with London-based design and procurement specialist, Matrix, and British lifestyle company, The White Company, to launch a new range of bedding and amenities for its Club World product.

The new range aims to deliver a great night’s sleep in the sky and is part of British Airways’ £400 million customer investment plan.

Launching later this year to customers travelling Club World between Heathrow and New York JFK, it will see a whole new suite of products onboard including a new, elegant day cushion which will double up as a lumbar support when working or relaxing.

Exclusively for British Airways, Matrix and The White Company have also designed a bespoke, soft, large pillow and a white cotton pillowcase.

Customers will be given a ‘super-soft’ woven blanket with satin trim and a specially developed luxury duvet to improve their quality of sleep, as well as a padded mattress topper. The new bedding from The White Company will be gradually rolled out across British Airways’ other long-haul routes.

The new Club World amenity kits come in an elegantly designed bag from The White Company and contain products from the retailer’s Restore & Relax Spa Collection, as well as a soft jersey eye-mask.

Harry Zalk, director at Matrix said: “We wanted to ensure that we provided Club World flyers with products that would truly enhance their ability to sleep on flights, enriched with the luxury quality that The White Company is known for. It’s part of Matrix’s wider initiatives to promote healthy sleep patterns for people on flights.”

United refreshes its menu choice

July 3, 2017

United Airlines has added new inflight dining options for its buy-on-board service.

From July 1, customers can experience a slice of Chicago with personal-size Uno’s deep-dish pizza, and United will expand its onboard beer list to include new Belgium Voodoo Ranger IPA from September 1.

United customers will also have more Choice Menu options, including Bistro on Board items like the breakfast egg white flatbread; Uno’s deep dish spinach, cheese and garlic pizza; Thai-style chicken ciabatta sandwich; and the new, Mediterranean-inspired Protein Box, featuring a healthy mix of almonds, sesame sticks, roasted red pepper hummus and cracked wheat salad.

United has also refreshed some of its Snack Shop items, including the Tapas Box, to include flatbread crackers, almonds, bruschetta, cheese spread, hummus, olive crackers, dried fruit, ginger mints and a sea salt dark chocolate caramel.

All new menu items and refreshed snackboxes will be available for purchase on flights within the U.S. with a scheduled flight time of more than 3.5 hours and on all international flights from the U.S. to Canada, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. Snack Shop items including the Tapas, Classic, Select and Ben Flyin Kid’s snackboxes are available on all flights over 1.5 hours within North America, including the Caribbean and select Latin American cities, Singapore and Australia.

United’s popular cheeseburger and fries ($11.99) will remain on the menu.

Also starting July 1, United will provide customers seated in Economy Plus on its premium transcontinental routes (BOS-SFO, EWR-LAX and EWR-SFO in both directions) a complimentary hot fresh entrée, dessert and fruit, a pre-arrival snack and alcoholic beverages. Sample menu selections include savoury roasted chicken with a smoked barbecue sauce and butternut squash tortellini with sage cream sauce. Dessert options will include cheesecake, as well as a chocolate brownie and fresh seasonal fruit.

Singapore adds local favourites

July 3, 2017

Singapore Airlines (SIA) customers have voted for their favourite local dishes to be served on selected flights from Singapore during the month of July.

The ‘Popular Local Fare’ dishes feature are part of SIA’s 70th birthday celebrations, through a collaboration with the Singapore Tourism Board and in conjunction with Singapore Food Festival, where the dishes will also be displayed.

Customers travelling in Suites, First Class and Business Class can savour iconic Singaporean dishes such as Singapore Chicken Rice (the top voted-for dish), Nasi Lemak, Fish Ball Kway Teow Soup, Prawn and Chicken Laksa, and Peranakan Hokkien Mee Soup.

A handful of the favourite dishes are currently only available for pre-ordering through the ‘Book the Cook’ service on selected flights. Introducing these ‘Popular Local Fare’ dishes to the regular in-flight menus for the month of July will give more travellers the opportunity to enjoy a taste of Singapore.

SPIRIANT develops spritz for Royal Jordanian

July 3, 2017

SPIRIANT has brokered a brand collaboration between Royal Jordanian Airlines and 4711 House of Fragrances.

Royal Jordanian has featured the classic 4711 Eau de Toilette cologne in its aircraft lavatories since the early 70s and it is now being featured in the airline’s amenity kits.

“4711 is a world-renowned brand, synonymous with refreshment and invigoration,” said Luay Qunash, head of inflight services & products at Royal Jordanian. “As these benefits are always important to customers, particularly on long-haul flights and during the summer months, it seemed a perfectly natural progression to include the cologne in our amenity kits.”

Born in Cologne, Germany, 4711 is a globally-known line of fragrances with a long and successful history of over 225 years. All 4711 products are unisex, a fact that makes them very popular among travellers and is unique in the industry.

Tobias Diebold, managing director SPIRIANT, said, “Our dedicated amenity kits business unit is on a mission to progressively create smarter brand collaborations. Knowing exactly how to initiate matches between airlines and luxury, lifestyle, fashion and cosmetic brands is a complex and intuitive skill in which we are proven experts.”

Kaelis blanket for Royal Air Maroc

July 3, 2017

Kaelis has supplied a new duvet for Royal Air Maroc’s Business passengers.

Working with the airline’s marketing and product departments, the Kaelis team designed a new duvet noted for its softness and embroidered with the airline’s logo to reinforce the brand.

The duvet colours reflect those of the airline – red on the front side and light beige on the back – and was created following extensive research and discussion to match the airline’s interiors and seats.

The duvet has been featured in a new advertisement featuring Moroccan artist, Said Taghmaoui. To see Royal Air Maroc’s video, click here.

HNA pledges charity support

July 3, 2017

Gategroup parent company, HNA Group, has announced more than $35 million in new charitable commitments to programmes around the world supporting health care, education, and disaster relief.

The new commitments were spotlighted at HNA Group’s annual Charity Night, held this year at the Petit Palais in Paris, France on June 26.

The event, co-hosted by the Cihang Foundation, also marked the release of HNA Group’s 2016 Social Responsibility Report and the start of HNA Paris International Week, a series of events hosted by HNA Group to celebrate its global platform.

Since its founding, HNA Group has made approximately $1.5 billion in charitable contributions across a range of initiatives aimed at supporting communities and empowering individuals with the tools and skills necessary to experience all the goodness life offers

Qantas teams up with academics to improve onboard wellbeing

June 27, 2017

Qantas is partnering with the University of Sydney’s Charles Perkins Centre to rethink its customers’ onboard experience.

The academic institution will work with Qantas to help develop the airline’s new approach to long haul travel ahead of its first Boeing 787 Dreamliner flights launching this year between Perth and London.

The centre brings together researchers from a variety of fields covering subjects ranging from nutrition to physical activity and sleep. Research projects include strategies to counteract jetlag as well as looking into onboard exercise and movement, menu design and service timing, pre and post-flight preparation, transit lounge wellness concepts and cabin environment including lighting and temperature.

Qantas Group ceo Alan a holistic view of our customers, our partnership will examine everything Joyce commented: “The Charles Perkins Centre researchers will allow Qantas to design and develop a range of new innovations and strategies to complement the Dreamliner experience. By taking from reducing the impact of jetlag through to health, nutrition and sleep through the entire journey experience.”

Joyce said that the centre’s research has already influenced what meals and beverages Qantas will be serving onboard and when, as well as cabin lighting and temperature. Neil Perry, Qantas’ creative director, food, beverage & service, is working with the centre on new menus for the 787 flights.

Qantas and the Charles Perkins Centre are looking at opportunities to involve some Qantas frequent flyers in trials that involve wearable technology in the measurement of existing biorhythms during travel, enabling future products to be developed and designed with the insight of robust data.

Delta triples meal options for domestic routes

June 27, 2017

Delta is tripling food choices for customers flying its 12 domestic coast-to-coast routes which offer free meals in the main cabin.

The move is part of the airline’s focus on offering continuous refreshments and
Delta has increased the variety of complimentary meal options by offering distinct breakfast, lunch and dinner menus that vary on eastbound and westbound flights, increasing the total number of meal options from six to 18.

Highlights from the menus include a Cheese Plate with items from the popular Murray’s Cheese store in New York City, a Luvo Harissa Roasted Veggie Wrap, a Greek Meze Plate, a Beef Pastrami Sandwich and a Sesame Noodle Salad.

Said Allison Ausband, Delta’s senior vice president in-flight service. “Our goal is to offer more choice to customers to satisfy different cravings and preferences, while continuing to offer fresh and healthful options.”

Delta introduced free meals in its main cabin on some of its longest domestic flights in March between JFK and LAX/SFO and in April expanded complimentary meals to 10 other domestic markets including Seattle, New York, Boston and Washington, D.C.

In addition to offering free meals, Delta has made other enhancements to its main cabin as part of a multi-billion dollar investment in the customer experience including the addition of sparkling wine, enhanced blankets, refreshed ‘Flight Fuel’ food-for-purchase options and free in-flight entertainment as well as rolling out the Delta One transcontinental experience on flights between DCA-LAX and BOS-SFO (customers on long-haul international flights are treated to complimentary beer, wine and spirits as well as sleep kits).

LSG acquires TGV Lyria as part of its expansion into rail

June 27, 2017

The LSG Group has acquired TGV Lyria, a train service that connects Paris with Switzerland’s major cities, including Geneva, Lausanne, Basel, Bern and Zurich.

The LSG Group will take over the services’ catering in two phases. The first one will take place by the end of the summer with the existing service concept. The second phase will take place by the end of this year and will entail the introduction of a new catering concept that will be characterised by the ‘Swissness’ and the ‘Frenchness’ of the products offered onboard.

“This customer win reconfirms our decision to make train services part of LSG’s core businesses and growth areas in Europe,” said Lars Redeligx, chief commercial officer Europe, LSG Group. “Our success is based on an in-depth understanding by our team of what the train operator and passengers expect and need. Our new concept itself is outstanding, innovative, customised and meets the targeted cost structure.”

LSG Group currently provides the train sector with services in the areas of procurement and supply chain, assembly and logistics, meal production, last-mile and onboard retail.

The company currently services iDTGV in France, Eurostar and Thalys in Belgium, Deutsche Bahn (Intercity 2) in Germany, Snälltaget in Sweden, Virgin in the United Kingdom and L-Exspresis in Latvia.

Etihad introduces new services to add value

June 27, 2017

Etihad Airways is introducing a series of changes to its onboard and on-ground service designed to offer increased value and flexibility based on customer feedback.

Inflight, Etihad has introduced a new ‘Neighbour-Free Seat’ option in Economy Class. The service provides guests with the option to enhance their flying experience by ‘bidding’ for up to three empty seats next to their original seat – subject to availability and cabin configuration.

The initiative gives guests the opportunity to enjoy increased space, comfort and privacy, for significantly less than Business Class ticket. Guests can bid at the time of booking online and successful bids will be confirmed 30 hours prior to departure.

On the ground, guests travelling Etihad’s Business can now also pay and upgrade to the airline’s luxurious flagship First Class Lounge & Spa when flying from, or transiting through Abu Dhabi.

Etihad Airways will also offer Economy Class guests paid access to its growing portfolio of dedicated lounges around the world, including its Premium Lounges in Abu Dhabi, London, Manchester, Dublin, Paris, Washington D.C., New York JFK, Sydney, Melbourne and Los Angeles.

Mohammad Al Bulooki, executive vice president commercial for Etihad Airways, said: “Etihad Airways is constantly looking at ways to improve its value proposition for guests, focusing on the service elements that are most important to them. This change is being put in place as the airline looks to evolve its product proposition while continuing to match individual customer requirements.”

Studio Culinaire expands its expert team

June 20, 2017

Gategroup has added two new prestigious chefs to its Studio Culinaire team, pioneered by Servair.

Michel Roth and Régis Marcon join a team headed by Chef Joël Robuchon, and will work on culinary innovation alongside chefs Guy Martin (Le Grand Véfour), 
Michel Quissac (Servair Corporate Chef) and Bruno Goussault (CREA).

The team aims to pool their complementary knowledge, reflect on the advancements in culinary technology, seek out new trends and respond to the specific needs of all gategroup customers.It acts as a creative think tank for the group and aims to continuously raise the quality of meals offered to airlines.

Michel Roth is a past winner of the Meilleur Ouvrier de France (MOF) competition and the Bocuse d’Or competition and his dishes reflect the grand tradition of French gastronomy blended with contemporary tastes.
 He was awarded two stars in the Michelin Guide for his work at the restaurant L’Espadon at the Ritz Hotel in Paris, where he was head chef until August 1 2012. In September 2012 he became head chef at the restaurant Bayview, located in Hotel President Wilson in Geneva, Switzerland.
In November 2013 he received a Michelin star and then joined the team at the Lenôtre School as an expertise director. In 2016 he developed the menu for the legendary restaurant Lassere in Paris.

Régis Marcon is a Relais et Châteaux grand chef and past winner of Bocuse d’Or. 
He ran his family owned hotel-restaurant, Auberge des Cimes, at the start of his career, earning his first Michelin star in 1990 and then a second one in 1997. After the opening of the new restaurant Régis et Jacques Marcon in 2005, he received his third star. 
He is also the owner of bakery La Chanterelle, the hotel La Découverte, the restaurant La Coulemelle. 
 He named Chef of the Year by the Gault & Millau guide in 2001 as well as a Relais et Châteaux Grand chef in 2008. He was awarded the French Legion of Honour in 2003.

Emirates tech deal

June 20, 2017

Emirates Flight Catering has forged a new partnership with Coupa Procure-to-Pay (P2P) to streamline procurement and spend processes across its organisation.

Coupa Software is a leader in cloud-based spend management and will provide a new tech solution to automate processes, from routine buying to e-invoicing, allowing employees to concentrate on the more strategic and mission critical aspects of its business.

“We spent a great deal of time evaluating solutions in depth as we were looking for the best solution in the market. We’re extremely confident that we have chosen the strongest possible solution,” said Kieran Dowd, vice president of procurement at Emirates Flight Catering. “Not only will Coupa provide us with greater visibility into our current spend, but it will completely transform our procurement practices, increase collaboration with our suppliers and is able to be deployed within a quick time frame which is vital to our business.”

KLM adds Business flexibility

June 20, 2017

KLM is turning its focus onto the freedom to choose with the introduction of “Anytime For You” options in Business.

Due to launch this summer on flights from Amsterdam and Johannesburg the service will include the choice of the regular three-course meal, plus an additional ‘anytime’ range.

The items available throughout the flight will include eight hot and cold dishes – both savoury and sweet – including healthy choices and indulgent treats.

This more flexible offer will be rolled out in coming months with the second route set to be announced in October.

Delta extends its restaurant collaborations

June 20, 2017

Delta has announced a new partnership with two Los Angeles-based chefs, Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo, for flights departing Los Angeles International Airport.

Delta One customers on flights from LAX to JFK and DCA will enjoy culinary creations inspired by the duo’s local restaurants. The new menus will feature local, fresh and seasonal ingredients, and will be reflective of the fare served at several of Shook and Dotolo’s most popular establishments including Animal, Son of a Gun and Jon & Vinny’s.

“Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo are known for delighting diners at their restaurants through diverse offerings and familiar flavours presented in bold, unexpected ways,” said Allison Ausband, Delta’s senior vice president – in-flight service. “We are thrilled to bring their fare to the skies and offer a taste of some of Los Angeles’ most popular restaurants to our Delta One customers — whether they’re locals who are craving a taste of home or visitors who want one last essential L.A. experience before heading home.”

Similar to the meals Union Square Hospitality Group creates daily for Delta One customers out of New York, Shook and Dotolo will prepare the new menu selections at a dedicated facility in Los Angeles. The freshly made meals will be transported to LAX each day from their catering company, Caramelized Productions, to ensure customers experience restaurant level service in the skies.

“Delta is really taking an innovative approach to onboard dining and we are proud to partner with them as they change the conversation around airplane food and elevate the customer experience inflight,” Ausband adds.

Mile One collaborates for Jetstar crew

June 13, 2017

Mile One Group has signed a contract with Qantas Group to supply 300k fresh daily meals each year to the crew of Jetstar Australia.

The team worked with nutritionists and the Australian superfood ready meal company, Super Nature, to create a crew offering that uses high energy and healthy ingredients across a full menu.

The crew meal boxes are packaged in specially-designed recyclable boxes designed by Star Packaging in Australia and include Chobani yoghurts, MOMA porridge pots, MyMix Muesli, Mini Bites and Chika Nuts in addition to the Super Nature offerings.

Mile One has also been working with FlyFit and placed its healthy snacks onboard Jetstar alongside Super Nature meals, supported by a product training roadshow introducing crew to the range throughout April.

APOT.Asia reschedules

June 13, 2017

APOT.Asia has rescheduled its annual conference and changed the planned venue following government advice warning against unnecessary travel to some regions of the Philippines.

The event was due to take place next month in the Province of Cebu, but will now be held at the end of October (22-24) in Bali, Indonesia.

Bambang Sujathmiko, chairman of APOT.Asia, says: “My team and I deeply regret having to make this difficult decision but felt it was in everyone’s best interest to not only be safe but to have the peace of mind to fully enjoy the event.”

The precise details of the new venue have not yet been confirmed but all delegates that have already registered for the forum and made payment, will have their payments reallocated to the Bali Forum.

Anyone with any concerns or queries can contact the team on:

Eva adds Melvita

June 13, 2017

Taiwan-based EVA Air is the first airline in Asia to offer Melvita products in the RIMOWA amenity kit.

The products are now onboard in Royal Laurel thanks to a brand collaboration brokered by SPIRIANT which brings together the French organic beauty products range, Melvin, and the German luggage manufacturer.

After nearly three years in the EVA Air inflight duty-free catalogue, Melvita’s presence in the domestic Taiwanese market has increased to over 10 retailers.

“Melvita organic products have been very well received to date due to an increase in customers favouring gentle and natural properties on their skin, particularly after a long-haul flight,” says Anne Deligny Villet, brand development director at SPIRIANT.

The RIMOWA hard case has been used by EVA Air since 2013 and is offered in seal grey and pearl white. EVA Air will rotate the two colours so passengers can collect them both.

ANA’s duo of bespoke wines

June 13, 2017

ANA has collaborated with wine connoisseur, Ned Goodwin, to create two bespoke wines designed for optimum inflight enjoyment.

A smooth red wine and a crisp white will be available in Business and First from September. They were blended to complement the way taste and smell faculties differ when flying at altitude.

The white was crafted from grapes grown in an ecologically sustainable fashion in South Australia, and the red is smooth and full-bodied.

Goodwin, who was Japan’s first Master of Wine, has worked as a sommelier, educator, TV show host, critic, consultant and wine writer. He has also worked alongside chef and sommelier, Katsuhito Inoue, to determine ANA’s wider inflight wine list for 2017.

Akira Nakamura, ANA senior vice president EMEA comments: “ANA is dedicated to delivering a five-star service to its passengers, and for us that means a high-quality and personalised service that embodies Japanese culture. With our original blend of wines, we’re giving our Business and First passengers an opportunity to enjoy fine wines that have been uniquely crafted to suit heights of 30,000+ feet.”

Hawaiian Airlines adds FFG service

June 13, 2017

Hawaiian Airlines has chosen Flying Food Group (FFG) Kona to service seasonal flights between Kona and Los Angeles as of May 28. Hawaiian is now offering three flights weekly to the mainland from Kona.

Since 2014, FFG HNL has catered 24 Hawaiian flights daily. System-wide, FFG services Hawaiian at New York JFK, LAX, SEA and SFO: plus Sacramento, Oakland and San Jose via remote catering.

Nicolas Rondeau, FFG executive vp, airline sales, noted that the Flying Food Group-Hawaiian Airlines partnership continues to flourish. FFG HNL has twice been named Hawaiian’s Domestic Kitchen of the Year (2015 + 2016).

Rondeau added that FFG HNL also earned Hawaiian’s 2017 Valued Partner Award for providing a “high level of support” and “daily contributions.”

FFG services over 80 leading airlines – primarily international – from its strategic network of 22 facilities.

Whittard goes to sea

June 6, 2017

Cruise and Maritime Voyages is partnering with Whittard of Chelsea to put the specialist beverage brand onboard its ships.

Whittard offers more than 100 blends of tea and in an exclusive arrangement, will supply tea and chocolate drinks on board flagship Columbus, and Magellan and Marco Polo. Whittard gift products will also be featured in the onboard shop.

Mark Dunhill managing director at Whittard said “This is an exciting initiative to be working with CMV who offer a traditional British cruise experience. Our original and imaginative products are perfectly suited for further benefiting their passengers’ onboard experience.”

The CMV and Whittard partnership will start from June 8. Pictured is Justine Perrin (Whittard) & Alistair Sellers (CMV) onboard Magellan.

Emirates’ cabin revamp

June 6, 2017

Emirates will showcase a new First Class product at the Dubai Air Show in November.

Making its debut onboard a Boeing 777-300ER, the new First cabin will feature six private suites laid out in a 1-1-1 configuration, compared to the existing eight private suites in a 1-2-1 layout on its existing 777 fleet.

In addition to the redesigned First product, the new Boeing 777-300ER will include new features in Business and Economy.

Sir Tim Clark, president Emirates Airline says: “This bigger revamp takes our onboard experience to the next level. All cabins will sport a totally fresh new look. We are excited to showcase the results of years of planning and development invested into our new First Class offering, and our overall Emirates 777 experience. More details will follow, watch this space.”

Emirates is the world’s largest operator of the Boeing 777, flying 162 of these aircraft to six continents from its hub in Dubai.

LOT expands Flying Food Group service

June 6, 2017

Flying Food Group (FFG) has been chosen by LOT Polish Airlines to cater two new routes: Los Angeles-Warsaw (four times a week) and Newark-Warsaw (five times a week).

Services at both locations launched in April 2017. In July, FFG will start catering LOT’s new service between Chicago and Krakow. Since 1989, FFG has exclusively catered LOT flights between Chicago and Warsaw, and between New York JFK and Warsaw.

“It is affirming when an existing customer adds gates after having experienced our customer-focused service first-hand,” said FFG executive vp airline sales Nicolas Rondeau. Rondeau noted LOT has been a loyal FFG customer for almost three decades.

FFG services over 80 leading airlines – primarily international – from its unique US network of 22 facilities. The company has received numerous awards of excellence from satisfied customers.

Nordic takeaway concept for SAS

May 31, 2017

SAS this week launches a new food concept inspired by its passengers and the Nordic food philosophy which is focused on local, seasonal ingredients.

The “New Nordic by SAS” is focused on function, quality, taste and design, to create a selection of taste experiences based on fresh, local ingredients and pure flavours in new pared down packaging designed for life onboard.

The concept will appear on SAS domestic, Scandinavian and European flights and has been developed by SAS food and drinks managers in consultation with passengers and cabin crew.

The new design is inspired by the takeaway culture. Lunch and dinner come pre-packed in a cube that makes the contents very easy to eat while continuing to work, read or watch a movie.

The menu includes Norwegian fjord salmon, Swedish lamb and Danish veal plus locally grown vegetables from Skags Gård farm. Accompaniments such as filled muffins will also be served along with main meals. The food and drinks are now available onboard Scandinavian and European flights and are included in the ticket price.

“We are on the constant look out for local producers that we can build a close relationship with and develop our menus together to ensure we serve ingredients that are in season, whether this be stone-baked bread from II Fornaio, asparagus grown at Stenhuse Gård Farm, handmade chocolates from Hedh Escalante or potatoes from Tollby Gård Farm,” Peter Lawrance, head chef and menu planner, SAS, says.

The new food and drinks concept is part of the SAS New Experience where SAS is also upgrading all its short and medium haul flights with new cabins and high speed WiFi.

The previous snacks and drinks range consisted of premium products from local Scandinavian suppliers. Favourite products from major international brands will continue to feature in the range, but the majority of products are from some of the largest brands in Scandinavia.

Accolades for Addis

May 31, 2017

Qatar Airways has awarded Addis International Catering ‘Best Caterer – Africa 2016’ for the second time since it started operations to Addis Ababa.

Addis International Catering (AIC) was established in 2006 to provide world class catering services to airlines, international conferences and other large scale events around Addis Ababa and the award recognises the dedication the company demonstrates in pioneering and maintaining the highest standards of quality and safety in the culinary field in Ethiopia.

Qatar Airways flies to more than 150 destinations globally, has 105 caterers around its network and operates to 24 destinations in Africa. It monitors caterer performance against several parameters including crew comments, time performance, passenger feedback, and other various food and safety related audits. Caterers are also vetted with sample checks, equipment inventories, communications, chefs table reports and operational performance.

AIC also caters other airline customers operating from Addis Ababa Bole International Airport including Air Djibouti, Egypt Air, Emirates Airlines and Kenya Airways. It also handles a wide variety of VIP, charter and private operators as well as smaller regional operators like Abyssinia Flight Services and Trans Nation Airways. As well as inflight catering, AIC also additionally performs cabin cleaning services to a number of carriers including Fly Dubai and Saudi Arabian Airlines.

AIC’s ISO accredited Food Safety Laboratory Services caries out full laboratory & microbiological testing as well as hygiene and HACCP training.

AA ups its dine before you fly option

May 31, 2017

American Airlines has opened a newly-renovated Flagship Lounge and new Flagship First dining option at New York John F. Kennedy International Airport.

Part of a $200 million investment in the luxury travel experience,Flagship Lounges are now available to Business customers travelling on international and transcontinental flights, in addition to First customers.

Customers will enjoy a range of food options including a robust hot and cold food buffet, an a la carte dining menu and a chef’s table with a rotating menu of made-to-order entrees. They can pair their meals with premium wine and champagne or a drink from our “make your own cocktail” station.

Passengers travelling in First now also have exclusive access to Flagship First Dining, located within the lounge where a sit-down restaurant experience offers complimentary, full-service dining with locally-inspired menus.

The JFK menu will feature ingredients from local purveyors including cheese from Sprout Creek Farms and grass-fed beef from Joyce Farms that will be used in American’s signature Flagship Burger. Customers are also offered specialty cocktails designed by renowned New York mixologist Pamela Wiznitzer and hand-selected wines from master sommelier Desmond Echavarrie.

The new lounge style will also roll out in Miami and Los Angeles later this year with London Heathrow and Dallas Fort Worth next, and Chicago O’Hare and Philadelphia in coming years.

Middle East show tracks growth

May 31, 2017

The fourth World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo Middle East (WTCEME), concluded successfully with exhibitors exploring new opportunities generated by the region’s strong aviation growth.

The Middle East region commands a big chunk in the global travel catering market, estimated at $15 billion and expected to increase to $17.6 billion by 2020. The region’s share in the global travel catering market has been rising above the global average growth of five per cent due to significant expansion of airports and airline networks.

More than 70 exhibitors showcased a wide range of travel catering services and solutions, including food, snacks, beverages, food packaging, processing, preparation and preservation equipment, tableware and chinaware, accessories, toiletries and travel amenities at the WTCEME.

LSG deal with AAS catering

May 23, 2017

LSG Group has signed an agreement AAS Catering to provide technical services for their inflight catering business.

AAS Catering supplies up to 25,000 meals per day to customers including Lufthansa, Emirates, Korean Air, KLM, Air China and Hainan Group Airlines at Kansai Airport, Osaka. The airport is one of the country’s major international hubs with an annual passenger volume of 23 million.

The LSG Group has been present in Asia-Pacific for more than 25 years. Today, its network in the region encompasses 39 wholly-owned or partnership facilities in China, Japan, Micronesia, Myanmar, Nepal, New Zealand, South Korea and Thailand.

Brics get onboard Qatar

May 23, 2017

BRIC’S has signed an exclusive, three-year partnership with Qatar Airways, to provide new amenity kits to complement its First and Business experience.

Facilitated by Formia, the BRIC’S deal sees two bespoke premium amenity bags go onboard, inspired by the world-famous suitcase collection and the brand’s mission to create products that match fashion & function.

The First kit is a stylish reproduction of the Bellagio rigid suitcase collection featuring high-tech, lightweight, resistant shells accented with genuine tobacco-colored Tuscan leather trim and contrast stitching. The Business kit is a refined reproduction of the Sintesis Collection, distinguished by its asymmetrical and curved shape.

All amenity kits will come in four colours: black, grey, burgundy and cream, with full grain leather inserts paired with a high-tech shell designed with contrasting stitching accents, with tobacco color trim.

They will feature skincare products from Italy’s Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio including lip balm, hydrating facial mist and City Cream anti-ageing moisturiser in Business, with the added Night Recovery Cream for First.

Alaska service ranks top

May 23, 2017

Alaska Airlines has been ranked highest in airline customer satisfaction among traditional carriers for the 10th consecutive year in the J.D. Power 2017 North America Airline Satisfaction Study.

The study, based on 11,015 responses, measured satisfaction of business and leisure travellers who flew a major North America carrier between April 2016 and March 2017. Alaska Airlines ranked highest of any traditional airline across five categories, including cost and fees; boarding/deplaning/baggage; flight crew; check-in; and reservations.

Alaska Airlines, together with Virgin America and its regional partners, flies 40 million customers a year to 118 destinations with an average of 1,200 daily flights across the United States and to Mexico, Canada, Costa Rica and Cuba

New WESSCO deal with Elyptol

May 16, 2017

WESSCO International has signed a partnership with Elyptol to feature its health and hygiene products as an onboard offer for airlines.

The products contain no toxic chemicals and carry the natural scent of eucalyptus oil, and are designed to help reduce infection and the spread of germs amongst passengers. They are natural, effective and have multiple uses suitable for both passengers and cleaning staff.

“This partnership represents a great opportunity for airlines to carry an award-winning, effective, FDA registered, hospital grade, natural family of sanitising products that will help reduce the spreading of germs in airline travel,” said Tim O’Connor, president & ceo of Elyptol. “We are very excited to partner with WESSCO International and be able to offer our products to all its global customers and try and make airline travel safer for passengers and crew”.

The products are packaged in specially sourced bio-degradable packaging and use a natural formulation base on the effective sanitising qualities of eucalyptus oil which is said to kill almost all bacteria, fungi and other common germs and cut the risks of allergic reactions or contact dermatitis. They also have moisturising properties. Elyptol is a member of the World Health Organizations (WHO) collaborative hand hygiene programme, Private Organizations for Patient Safety (POPS).

WESSCO is scheduled to include Elyptol anti-microbial skin care products in its amenity kits, which are also available in full-size bottle and floor dispenser for airport lounges.

Alpha LSG recognises top crew

May 16, 2017

Thomas Cook Airlines and and Alpha LSG have recognised top performing members of the airline’s cabin crew at their two-day OMG! Conference, Training and Awards event.

The event, focused on workshops and seminars, is designed to help cabin crew achieve better commercial results, and provides an opportunity to reward outstanding performance.

Awards were given out across nine categories including highest spend per head, incentive participation and positive approach to sales among others.

The overall winner of OMG! 2017 was Glasgow based Jennifer Bell, who excelled in all categories. She won two Thomas Cook Airlines flights to San Francisco plus £500 spending money.

Uwe Balser, Thomas Cook Group, director of cabin crew, said: “I am so proud to see our cabin crew from across our markets attend this event to learn the latest sales techniques, to learn more about our fabulous products and to have lots of fun in the process.”

Crews rate kids gifts onboard

May 16, 2017

Research on travelling with children suggests kids gifts and amenities significantly help optimise brand experience and at the same time create better job satisfaction for cabin crew.

As part of a new product development programme KIDZinflight had an independent research company survey 100 cabin crew from 21 airlines and their working conditions and attitudes to child passengers.

The research highlights the challenges kids onboard pose for crew with 69% of 
respondents saying their role had become more demanding in recent years, in part because of the increasing number of children onboard.

Some 97% of those surveyed said that distribution of activity toys
 during flights had a positive effect on the children and 86% said it benefitted other passengers.

While up to 30% of cabin crew do not currently give out activity toys, and a further 28% of the respondents have never distributed toys, the majority (89%) of cabin crew said they would welcome the opportunity to do so provided the gifts were easy to handle. Some 64% of the cabin crew said giving out a activity toy made their job easier.

Eurostar seeks sustainable talent

May 16, 2017

High speed passenger rail service, Eurostar, has joined forces with GoodPlanet Foundation (France), GoodPlanet Belgium and the Young People’s Trust for the Environment (YPTE), to launch a culinary challenge across the UK, France and Belgium.

Young people aged between 15 and 19 will be asked to create a sustainable Business Premier dish and the competition will be open for entries from now until June 30 2017. The winning dish will feature on the Eurostar Business Premier class menu for three months from November this year.

The challenge is a well-balanced, seasonal and nutritious Business class dish, which also reflects a strong understanding of the provenance of the ingredients and the sustainability of the dish.

Raymond Blanc, OBE, the renowned Michelin starred chef, Eurostar Business Premier Culinary Director and President of the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA), will be the lead judge of a panel of experts from the supporting organisations. He said: “Today, more than ever, we should all be thinking about the provenance and sustainability of our food, as well as the flavour and presentation. Whilst more consideration is now given to food miles, not everyone is aware of the negative consequences of food production. I am proud to be judging this competition and will enjoy working with the winner on the introduction of their dish to the Eurostar menu.”

New looks for Air Canada

April 26, 2017

Air Canada has unveiled a range of upgrades covering its livery, uniforms, cabin interiors and onboard menus.

The airline has worked with British Columbia-based chef, David Hawksworth, and Quebec-based sommelier, Véronique Rivest, to develop premium menu choices which showcase Canadian ingredients from across the country. New to the mix is Lavazza premium Italian coffee and Toronto-based Dufflet Pastries’ pumpkin spice loaf on flights to Europe.

Rivest has selected a Vineland Estates Winery white wine from Ontario’s Niagara region and Les Athlètes du Vin, a French Pinot, to debut in Air Canada’s Business from April.

The refresh is part of celebrations to mark Canada’s 150th birthday and Air Canada’s 80th year, and aims to ensure the airline better reflects the Canadian spirit. The new livery was created by Winkreative, a design firm headed up by Canadian entrepreneur Tyler Brûlé, and features a black and white colour scheme with the red maple leaf encircled ensign returned to the aircraft tail fins for the first time in 24 years.

Red accents continue through the airline’s new uniform which is black and charcoal with red accessories styled by Canadian fashion designer Christopher Bates. The uniforms reflect the greys, natural tones and reds featured in the new interior cabin design for Air Canada’s international fleet.

The new livery has been immediately applied to three new Boeing 787 Dreamliners with others in the fleet, and the new uniforms, being rolled out through the coming year.

Air Transat adds celebrity flavours

April 26, 2017

Air Transat has partnered with chef Daniel Vézina to offer a selection of gourmet signature dishes.

The Chef’s Menu by renowned Quebec chef Vézina will be offered to Club passengers as of May 1, and will also be available to Economy passengers, in limited quantity, on transatlantic flights for $25.

Jean-François Lemay, president-general manager of Air Transat says: “Daniel Vézina is known for his attention to quality and his desire to make haute cuisine accessible to all, which makes him the best chef to partner with for our brand.”

The menu will be served with a cheese plate, dessert and glass of wine and includes chicken ragout with lemon zest and seasonal vegetables; duck confit lasagna with spinach and a sherry and foie gras emulsion; braised leg of lamb with spices, maple syrup and Indian vegetable curry; sweet potato gnocchi with red wine bolognese; spinach pesto and Parmesan shavings; vegetarian moussaka with grilled vegetables, creamed goat cheese, tomato and red pepper coulis; and vegan risotto with rice cream, red pepper coulis and diced root vegetables with fennel.

The meals created by Daniel Vézina will change over the seasons and can be pre-ordered on Air Transat’s website.

American Airlines upgrades with linen

April 26, 2017

American Airlines has refreshed its amenity kit for Premium Economy in a collaboration with WESSCO.

Made from textured linen with printed geometric patterns, the bag features overlapping hexagon patterns designed to create the subtle illusion of a cube by connecting every other vertex to the centre. The effect is formed by using three diamonds shaded differently.

The bag’s zipper pull doubles as a quick release keychain with the American Airlines’ logo printed on it.

The contents include a pair of grey socks, an eyeshade, earplugs and dental kit.

Emanuel Ungaro gets onboard

April 26, 2017

AK-Service has forged a new collaboration for Aeroflot which brings the Emanuel Ungaro toiletries brand onboard for the first time.

The Parisian fashion house brand has been used for Aeroflot’s new Business amenity kits, each of which includes a moisturising face cream and moisturising lip balm.

Both items have the subtle perfume of l’Eau d’Ungaro, said to particularly suit the tastes of sophisticated passengers. The kits also include an eye mask, dental kit, shoe horn, comb and pen.

Following the ongoing success of exclusive pouches featuring ‘the best of’ Aeroflot’s stewardesses, a new range of bags has been introduced for Business passengers extending this collection. Blue pouches with a classic form are designed to suit both women and men and have post-flight functionality. The unique design on the bags encourages passengers to collect them and also try to get the autograph of a featured stewardess.

Green Gourmet gains Queen’s recognition

April 26, 2017

Green Gourmet has been awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise 2017 – the UK’s highest accolade for business success.

The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are the UK’s most prestigious enterprise awards and aim to celebrate and encourage business excellence in the UK. Winners of the innovation award show outstanding results and/or sustained commercial success over a period of years. The winners are chosen by the Queen, on advice of the Prime Minister.

Green Gourmet’s recognition follows its development of a portion-controlled chicken breast fillet for school catering providing consistently-sized, ethically-sourced chicken portions, using the part of the chicken breast that provides the required protein.

The company worked with suppliers and producers to develop a 57 gram portion. By owning several steps of the process, Green Gourmet maintains quality control and by outsourcing manufacturing it reduces cost of production.

Julie Moore, managing director says: “Receiving the Queens Award is a great recognition for the hard work the whole team has put in over the last five years. Because Green Gourmet is an innovation company, we fully understand the benefits we bring to the market with our products, however, the Queens Award gives us a stamp of approval to give to customers. I think it will open up a wealth of new opportunities for us.”

Spiriant’s Audi hat-trick

April 19, 2017

SPIRIANT and the design studio of the Audi Group have developed three collections of onboard service products for premium passengers.

The three collections named Smart Comfort, Relax & Recharge and Dine & Delight reflect the team’s predictions for future wellbeing needs and focus on providing passengers comfort and good health while facilitating easy handling by crews.

Items in the collections include an innovative sleeping mask with slots for flat headphones (Smart Comfort), a thermal cape to prevent any neck or upper back pain (Relax & Recharge) and a modular tray system that can be configured in a variety of ways (Dine & Delight).

“Our airline customers are looking for innovative ways to differentiate themselves in order to attract premium passengers,“ said Daniel Knies, SPIRIANT’s director of design and products. “In addition to fulfilling comfort requirements, these new collections also respond to the increasing desire among consumers to take care of their health while travelling.“

The products could also be used in the future in self-driving cars. “The well-being of passengers is not only essential on flights. This new way of driving will also allow car passengers to use their time to relax or work. That means that long-term, many of the products we designed can also be used in AUDI-cars,” said André Georgi, Audi Industrial Design.

Alpha LSG extends with Jet2

April 19, 2017

Alpha LSG has been awarded a five year extension to its contract to provide catering and logistics services to’s entire UK network, including new routes out of Birmingham and London-Stansted that are being launched from the end of March.

The enhanced contract, which runs through to 2021, reflects the excellent long-standing relationship between Alpha LSG and since the award-winning airline commenced its UK operations back in 2003 from its main hub at Leeds-Bradford.

The UK’s fourth largest scheduled operator has extended its services at the regional airports of Belfast, Edinburgh, East Midlands, Glasgow, Manchester and Newcastle, most recently adding Birmingham and London-Stansted to its portfolio.

Alex Forbes, ceo of Alpha LSG, says: “We have been the caterer of choice for since the airline’s inception 14 years ago, working closely with their team to support the airline’s rapid growth through our renowned expertise and our ability to meet all of their requirements at all of their bases across the UK. In 2016 we achieved a remarkable on-time performance score of 99.83% across Jet2’s bases, underpinning our reputation for reliability and consistency.”

Skysupply adds colour

April 19, 2017

Skysupply and Thomas Cook Condor have joined forces to bring a splash of summer colour to its Business cabin.

New inbound and outbound amenity kits which skysupply developed, created and produced embed the Thomas Cook corporate identity in kits designed for use beyond the flight.

“As we developed the new kits we deliberately refrained from creating a classic cosmetic pouch. All products were designed in a way that allows both  usage while being in the vacation destination and after usage at home,” says Wolfgang Bücherl, Managing Director at skysupply.

The inbound kit features a pouch made of neoprene containing a dental set, earplugs, grey socks with a yellow toe tip and an eye mask. The mask has a yellow coloured “wake up” side with an alarm clock symbol relating to the sunrise, and a “good night” side coloured in grey with a moon and star print symbolising the sleeping mode.

Outbound passengers will be handed a yellow hard shell sunglasses case – with grey and white details – which can easily be unzipped and securely closed again. In addition to the box, passengers receive a dental set, earplugs, grey socks with yellow toe tip as well as the double-sided eye mask, as in the inbound kit. All items are stored in the sunglasses case.

Buzz gets arty for Qantas

April 19, 2017

Buzz has work with some of Australia’s leading artists, photographers and digital influencers to feature their work on the international Business class amenity kits for Qantas.

The ‘Qantas Curates’ programme has seen the airline work with professional Australian contemporary art curators to select artworks from 16 Australians specialising in a variety of different styles including pop culture, photography, fine art, abstract landscape, Indigenous art and textile design.

The new range of amenity kits (eight types for men and eight for women) will be onboard from May 1 with two designs launching every few months.

The bags are positioned as collectible pieces to take away post-flight and use as make-up bags, an evening clutch or for mobile phone storage.

Billie Justice Thomson, whose artwork ‘Fairy Bread’ will feature on an amenity kit for women said: “It’s really exciting to be part of an art exhibition at 38,000 feet. This is a powerful way to share contemporary art, particularly alongside some of Australia’s most talented artists.”

The amenity kits include ASPAR products by Aurora Spa (hand cream, lip balm and face moisturiser), a wrap-around eye mask in the same artwork as the kit, Colgate toothpaste, toothbrush, earplugs and travel socks.

Every one’s a winner

April 10, 2017

Just three years since we launched the Onboard Hospitality Awards, these are now THE awards for the onboard hospitality industry. Check out our photo gallery of the 2017 awards presentation evening here.

This year almost 200 products and services were put forward in 11 categories and the winners were announced to an invited audience of buyers and suppliers at the Radisson Blu in Hamburg just prior to the World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo.

Onboard Hospitality’s editor, Julie Baxter, said: “If it was up to us, they’d all be winners because we see on a daily basis just how passionate businesses in this sector are about their products and services, just how genuinely they believe in what they bring to market.

“In fact it is our entirely independent judging process which sets these awards apart, giving our readers – this industry’s buyers and suppliers – a key role in the judging process. This ensures the Awards represent peer to peer recognition of the most valuable kind, they have been judged by their industry colleagues – all with expert knowledge and experience in the onboard hospitality field.

“The awards have been driven by the industry – they are YOUR awards and we are proud to make them happen for you.”

Be apart of them for 2018 – entries open September 1 2017.

Full 2017 Award Winners details here

Taste of Travel

April 4, 2017

Don’t miss the fun and inspiring sessions at the Taste of Travel Theatre today and tomorrow, if you are attending WTCE Hamburg.

Onboard Hospitality is delighted to be working with the World Travel Catering & Onboard Services Expo (WTCE) team again this year to pull together an exciting programme of lively and inspiring sessions at the Taste of Travel Theatre.

Today (Wednesday) sees Finnish Chef of the Year and Bocuse d’Or finalist, Eero Vottonen present a range of signature breakfast dishes he created for Finnair; and high-profile Asian chefs, Chef Ms Trinh Diem Vy and Chef Happy demonstrating how teaming up with restaurants can improve airline and rail customer satisfaction.

Tomorrow (Thursday) Alan Hayes, inflight retail and managed services director for Alpha LSG, discusses an alternative view of the buyer/supplier relationship and key considerations you should follow in really making your product’s sales soar. And there is a chance to meet new products targeting the onboard market and get the lowdown on everyone’s favourite cuppa – tea.

All sessions are free to attend with fantastic food samples available as well as plenty of interactive discussion and inspirational ideas. The Onboard Hospitality team is based beside the Theatre on Stand 1G99.

Full Taste of Travel programme details here.

Check out highlights from Tuesday’s Taste of Travel session with Levi Roots here.

AIX in action

April 4, 2017

Onboard Hospitality is pleased to be attending the Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX), in Hamburg, this week. Richard Williams, Julie Baxter and Sue Williams are touring the stands looking for the latest innovations, technologies and inflight entertainment.

Polly Magraw, Event Director, comments: “There has been major growth in the number of exhibitors this year and in particular in the expanding IFEC zone, which is reflective of another successful year for the industry.”

Among those companies making their mark at the show are:

FliteTrak: Unveiling next generation intelligent airline seating technology that will transform passenger comfort with seating that can measure individual seats for temperature, movement and seatbelt closure.

Dimer LLC: Showcasing its mobile sanitising robot for airplane interiors, “GermFalcon”. The highly effective germ-killing device is mobile and compact — no larger than a flight attendant’s food and beverage cart

GENTEX: Showcasing the latest in electronically dimmable windows to enhance the flight experience. The dimmable windows feature high‐speed transition between clear and dark, a new ultra‐dark low‐end transmission, an innovative thin‐film coating for elimination of harmful IR and UV light, and reduced maintenance and operation costs

AeroFoam Industries: Debuting their comfort configuration tool. Using a seat configuration platform, people will be able to sit with AeroFoam experts as they adjust the comfort.

Zyenalabs: Showcasing its technology that provides for cabin exploration and feasibility studies through visualisation technology.

Starling Aerospace: launching their new track and swivel seat to optimise passenger space for recline and relaxation.

Skysupply prepares for the sun

April 4, 2017

Skysupply has launched a new summer sun focused amenity kit offer for the airlines of the Thomas Cook Group Airlines.

The Premium Economy Class inbound kit comprises a handy, foldable shopper bag in a discreet gray and white pattern. Its cover has a hook to be attached to the inside of a purse, for example.

In addition, passengers receive a liquid hand sanitizer, in-ear headphones, a dental set, earplugs, gray socks with a yellow tip and an eye mask.

The mask has a yellow coloured “wake up” side with an alarm clock symbol relating to the sunrise, and a “good night” side colored in gray with a moon and star print symbolizing the sleeping mode.
The whole content is presented as a gift held together in place by a neat banderole.

Wolfgang Bücherl, md at skysupply says: “As we developed the new amenity kits for the Thomas Cook Group, we deliberately refrained from creating a classic cosmetic pouch. All products were designed in a way that allows both a usage while being in the vacation destination and an after usage at home.”

When flying outbound, Premium Economy Class passengers receive a water bottle showing a friendly yellow and white colour concept. All amenities are stored in the bottle, once again held together in place by a neat banderole for an easy and organised transportation.

The airline group includes Thomas Cook Airlines UK, Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia, Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium and Condor Flugdienst.

Japan Airlines introduces new First amenity kits

March 28, 2017

Japan Airlines (JAL) will introduce new amenity kits for its international First passengers this week supplied by Formia.

The new kits, developed in collaboration with Porsche Design, will be available on routes to Tokyo Haneda and Narita from London Heathrow, New York JFK, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Two different colours of amenity kit cases will be available separately on inbound and outbound flights.

The kits will include a toothbrush set, mouthwash, ear plugs, eye mask, brush, moisture mask and tissues as well as Porsche-designed hand and body cream, facial spray and lip balm.

Additionally, JAL will introduce new Porsche-designed inflight relax wear, also supplied by Formia, for a three-month period.

MSC Cruises reveals new dining offerings

March 28, 2017

MSC Cruises is to launch an enhanced onboard dining experience which will include flexible dining, new specialty restaurants, chefs tables and open kitchens.

The new experiences will first be available on MSC Meraviglia in June and MSC Seaside in December and will also include collaborations with chef Roy Yamaguchi and award-winning French chocolatier and pastry chef Jean-Philippe Maury.

MSC Cruises’ head of product development and guest experience, Andrea Gangale, says: “The new dining concepts are being introduced to cater to the needs of today’s cruise guests, who are looking for flexibility and choices. We are also introducing new ways for guests to manage their choices – through cutting-edge onboard technology – and offering an even greater selection of international restaurants to deliver culinary experiences from around the world.”

Onboard ‘Flexi Dining’ allows a guest to pre-select a time slot for their evening meal, with the ability to change it at any time during their cruise.

Both ships will feature restaurants with ‘open kitchens’, following the trend in land-based restaurant design, allowing guests to see the chefs at work.

Kaito Teppanyaki will open on MSC Meraviglia offering a modern twist on Asian cuisine; additionally the Butcher’s Cut American Steakhouse will open onboard. MSC Seaside will feature Asian Market Kitchen by Roy Yamaguchi and seafood restaurant, Ocean Cay.

Etihad celebrates its 2000th flying nanny

March 28, 2017

Etihad Airways celebrated the graduation of its 2000th Flying Nanny from its bespoke training programme devised in partnership with UK-based higher education college Norland.

The college specialises in early years education and ensures Etihad’s onboard Flying Nannies can combine service and hospitality expertise with childcare skills.

Linda Celestino, Etihad Airways’ vice president guest experience, says: “Flying with a young family can be daunting, even for our most experienced guests, and the Flying Nanny role demonstrates our understanding of their needs and our unwavering commitment to making the journey as relaxing, entertaining and comfortable as possible.”

Etihad also now features a Flying Nanny Kit as part of the ‘Etihad Explorers’ programme, with children’s activities including origami, games, pom-poms, flight certificates, magic tricks and face painting.

Pictured is Linda Celestino, (right), Etihad Airways’ 2000th Flying Nanny, Isabel Moya Guzman (centre), and Claire Burgess, head of research, consultancy and training at Norland (left)

Foodie focus at WTCE

March 20, 2017

Development chefs, Michelin-star chefs, TV and celebrity chefs will all be among the lineup at this year’s Taste of Travel Theatre, during WTCE.

Moderated by Onboard Hospitality’s former editor Jo Austin, the lively foodie sessions will include a star-studded collection of innovative chefs sure to provide culinary inspiration for onboard application and some great tasting samples every day of the show (April 4-6).

First up will be development chef consultant, TV presenter and founder of Posh Pasty, James Strawbridge focus on foodie products which work best for the buy-on-board market.
Followed by Michelin-starred celebrity chef Mark Sargeant who demonstrated dishes he created for onboard American Airlines while treating his audience to highlights from his career – including his time working under Gordon Ramsay.

Later in the day, TV personality and celebrity chef Levi Roots will talk about the journey behind his successful Reggae Reggae range of Caribbean-inspired cooking sauces, ready meals, soft drinks and desserts.

On the second day, Eero Vottonen, winner of the Worldchefs Global Chef Challenge 2016, will present his range of signature dishes – created to celebrate Finnair’s centennial anniversary. He will be joined by Maarit Keränen, Head of In-Flight Service at Finnair, who will explain the value of working with a celebrity chef like Vottonen.

From Vietnam, Chef Ms Trinh Diem Vy – one of Vietnam’s most recognised restauranteurs and chefs – will also speak on the second day is a session with Chef Keerthi Hapugasdeniya (Happy) to explain how partnering with restaurants can improve airline and rail customer satisfaction.

For the full Taste of Travel Theatre programme

Alessi for Delta

March 20, 2017

After three years of research and product development, Buzz has introduced Alessi for Delta, a modern, bespoke serviceware range created exclusively for Delta Air Lines.

Buzz facilitated this partnership with globally renowned design house, Alessi to curate a modern, stylish and functional line of service products and tableware for Delta. This will be the first time Alessi has appeared inflight with a major airline with such a comprehensive program.

The Alessi for Delta range includes flatware, cutlery, glassware, ceramics, tabletop accessories such as napkin rings and cruet, servingware and trays.

The Buzz team designed, produced, tested, coordinated and delivered all the products for the Alessi for Delta range, working alongside Alessi to ensure their design visions remained true whilst translating their product for onboard use taking into account the weight, size, material and logistical considerations.

Natural attractions

March 20, 2017

The UK’s biggest trade event for natural and organic food and drink opens in London on 2-3 April

Purple tea, cashew milk yoghurt, pure grain bread, turmeric lattes, goat’s kefir, high-protein noodles, sunshine soup, and matcha tea butter – will be among the new product launches taking place at the Natural Food Show, held at London ExCeL.

Part of Natural & Organic Products Europe trade show, which attracts over 10,000 attendees annually, the Natural Food Show is a vibrant showcase of the best (and biggest) choice of natural and certified organic food and drink from around the world.

Many of the 400+ companies confirmed for 2017 won’t be exhibiting at any other event in the UK this year – making it a useful event for buyers looking to discover innovative new ideas and emerging trends that they won’t see elsewhere.

Details of new products launching at the event here

Boris drops in on Ethiopian

March 20, 2017

The Hon. Boris Johnson MP, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, has toured Ethiopian Airline’s Headquarters in Addis Ababa, praising its commitment to fast growth in the region.

During his visit to the airline’s Aviation Academy and flight simulators the Foreign Secretary said: “Ethiopian Airlines is one of the fastest growing airlines in the world and my visit to Ethiopia is quite instrumental in boosting the existing partnership between the UK and Ethiopia.”

Ethiopian currently flies to London, Brussels, Dublin, Frankfurt, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Rome, Stockholm and Vienna in Europe and will add Oslo as of March 26, 2017. It is the fastest growing airline in Africa and one of the continent’s leading carriers.

Qatar sets new standards

March 14, 2017

QATAR Airways claims to be setting new standards in the Business cabin with the launch of QSuite seating.

Two years in the making, the flexible private suites can be opened up into a double bed while adjustable panels and movable TV monitors on the centre four seats can be stowed to create an even larger suite for four passengers to work and dine together.

The new product will be retrofitted on the existing Qatar Airways fleet from June.

The new Business experience will also include an enhanced food and beverage concept, including sharing options, new chinaware and cutlery, ‘sumptuous’ soft furnishings, luxury bedding, sleep suits from The White Company and amenity kits featuring Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio olive oil-based toiletries.

Virgin renewal for Gategroup

March 14, 2017

Gategroup reports the renewal of its Virgin Atlantic contract in the UK, the US and Shanghai for up to five more years. Virgin Atlantic is one of gategroup’s top 10 customers globally and sees it managing onboard provisioning services, menu and service design concepts and total food sourcing and distribution for the airline.

Mark Anderson, evp customer, Virgin Atlantic comments: “The food we serve onboard plays an important part in our customer’s journey. From our locally-sourced dishes, to the ice-cream handed out during the movies, we believe in providing the best inflight experience for our customers. We are excited to extend our partnership with gategroup to continue delivering the innovative experience our customers love.”

“We are delighted to continue partnering with Virgin Atlantic, a leading international airline known for its trend-setting originality,” said Xavier Rossinyol, gategroup chief executive officer. “I am proud of all the gategroup team members involved, especially in the UK, and our Culinary Centre of Excellence. Their work demonstrates our dedicated focus on airline customers and delivering the very best for passengers.”

Formia to open in the US

March 14, 2017

FORMIA is to establish a brand, marketing and sales operation in the United States. Led by Niklas Sandor, newly-appointed regional director, this local presence will improve support to the local client base while boosting the growth opportunities for the company in both North and South America.

Gin’s the thing for Newrest

March 14, 2017

NEWREST has launched an innovative Gin Bar for service onboard Flybe.

Said to be a first to market, the Gin Bar features six different types of gin miniatures including Tanqueray, Whitley Neill, Caorunn and Opihr alongside Gordons and Bombay offered with Fevertree tonic.

Building on its Krispy Kremes onboard innovation, Newrest has also now added four ITSU products to its mix.

Select gets the Art of Shaving

March 14, 2017

Select Amenities has expanded its offering to include products created by The Art of Shaving brand.

Founded in 1996, The Art of Shaving has grown from one store on Lexington Avenue, New York, to a global brand with more than 150 retail locations.

Its concept is devoted to being the best in men’s skin care and grooming and focuses on a path to optimal shaving performance which it calls ‘The Four Elements of The Perfect Shave’. The message is backed by products which help shavers prepare, lather up, shave and moisturise.

The grooming products use 100% pure essential oils and are now offered as a travel range suitable for inflight.

Trolley distribution deal for RMT Global Partners

March 14, 2017

Trollley specialist Norduyn has forged a new partnership with RMT Global Partners to promote and sell its airline catering products.

The partnership will see RMT Global Partners promote and sell Norduyn’s Quantum Flex trolleys, oven inserts, trays, waste bins, Atlas-standard drawers and carriers to USA-based airlines.

Mathieu Boivin, president & ceo of Norduyn, says: “We are delighted about the new partnership with RMT Global Partners, a well-established inflight service equipment provider with expertise in the aviation market. The now enhanced product portfolio will bring added value to airlines, enabling them to purchase a full range of mobile service equipment from a single source.”

The Quantum Flex range is positioned as innovative and industry leading as it is made from mostly composite materials. It is easier to maintain than traditional all-aluminum trolleys, lowering overall maintenance costs and is available in standard and half sizes with multiple configurations. Combined with Norduyn’s lighter Atlas-standard drawers it can help lower fuel costs and maintenance down time, and make service easier for crew.

Richard Tuttle, ceo and md for RMT Global Partners, says: “This exciting partnership enables us to offer an entirely new line of quality products. We look forward to working with Norduyn as we both grow into the future.”

All products and more can be seen at the RMT Global Partners’ stand 1F58 at WTCE Hamburg 2017 and at Norduyn’s stand 7A60 at AIX Hamburg 2017.;

Eurowings renewal for Retail inMotion

March 14, 2017

Retail inMotion and Eurowings have extended their longstanding partnership through LSG Sky Chefs Retail for another three years. The scope of the contract will include fully outsourced retail management for the airline for all Eurowings stations across Europe.

As part of the new contract agreement, LSG Retail will implement a totally new loading concept that increases efficiencies for the airline and their passengers.

“We have developed a productive, edifying and long-lasting business relationship with the LSG Retail team in Cologne,” said Katrin Flöther, vice president customer experience & product at Eurowings. “The past successes we have implemented together clearly indicate that our collaboration will benefit the overall customer satisfaction on board the Eurowings fleet and will be lucrative for both of our companies moving forward.”

The relationship between Eurowings and LSG Group originally began in 2002 under the Germanwings brand. The partnership continues at present between LSG Retail, which operates under the brand umbrella of Retail inMotion, and Eurowings. LSG Retail caters for more than 175,000 flights for Eurowings each year.

COPA Airlines Business Class Amenity Kit

March 14, 2017

COPA Airlines, Panamá’s flag carrier, has launched a new Business Class Amenity Kit featuring patterns inspired by the handicraft traditions of Panamá’s indigenous people. The abstract geometric figures depicted on the bag’s natural exterior material and on the eyeshade are evocative of Panamá’s distinctive landscape and wildlife. The kit includes a comfort pack with socks, eyeshade and a signature skincare line-up with almond-scented hand lotion and an almond lip balm stick inspired by the beach almond tree of Panamá

Flying Food Group chalks up a range of successes

March 7, 2017

Xiamen Airlines has chosen Flying Food Group JFK to cater its new, three-times weekly route between New York JFK and Fuzhou, China. JFK is Xiamen’s second US gateway.

Emirates Airline has chosen Flying Food Group IAD to cater its daily flights between Washington Dulles and Dubai. Emirates switched to FFG at IAD as of March 1, 2017. FFG IAD is a 48,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art kitchen sited less than five miles from Dulles International Airport. The facility debuted in December 2015 servicing launch customer Virgin Atlantic.

FFG IAD customers now include Emirates, Royal Air Maroc (RAM) three times weekly to Casablanca; Ethiopian Airlines, seven times weekly flights Addis Ababa, Lufthansa, twice daily flights to Frankfurt/Munich and Virgin Atlantic—daily to London.

Birthday amenity kits with Icelandair

March 7, 2017

ICELANDAIR is celebrating its 80th anniversary with the launch of new amenity kits from spring 2017.

Created in a collaboration with inflight specialists, skysupply, the special edition kits come in branded, anniversary tins featuring distinctive imagery of Iceland.

The kits will be distributed in the airline’s new Saga Class and contain a dental set, earplugs, socks, an extra large eye mask and a collection of Blue Lagoon toiletries, linking the onboard gift to one of Iceland’s most popular stand-out visitor attractions.

There are four signature motifs representing the destination on the tins and passengers will be encouraged to collector the full set and reuse them post flight.

Wolfgang Bücherl, managing director of skysupply said: “We are very delighted to be part of Icelandair’s jubilee celebrations and compliment the national carrier on its long-term success.”

Keeping it tidy onboard

March 7, 2017

KAELIS Onboard Services has signed a new deal with UK carrier easyJet to provide an innovative rack dispenser onboard.

The dispenser, designed specifically to improve efficiency and tidiness onboard features multiple compartments for cups, stirrers, sugar sachets and napkins amongst other.

The detachable accessory hangs on the side of the drawer on top of the trolley to give additional storage, opportunities and can be used not only for dining and catering products but also to provide additional space for buy-on-board product displays. The product is transparent and located on top of the trolley at customer eye-level.

Michelin-star dishes with Air France

March 7, 2017

AIR France Business passengers departing from Canada are now being served dishes created by Michelin-starred chef, Danieal Boulud.

Flights departing Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver, until the end of February 2018, will offer a new dish each month as part of an Air France programme positioning it as ambassador fine French dining in the sky.

Daniel Boulud, creator of Café Boulud at the Four Seasons Hotel in Toronto and Maison Boulud at the Ritz-Carlton Montreal, is inspired by French culinary traditions enhanced with international spices. Among the dishes he has created are salmon with fennel, chickpea and sumac, braised lamb with spring root vegetables and braised chicken basquaise with chorizo, peppers and saffron rice.

Air France has worked with renowned French chefs since 2008 for its menus.

New regional food offerings from ANA

March 7, 2017

ALL Nippon Airways (ANA) has launch the latest phase of its Taste of Japan campaign focused on regional F&B.

Launched in 2013, the campaign aims to raise the profile of Japan’s lesser-known regions by featuring their food and drink on ANA flights and in airport lounges.

This phase features produce from Nagano, Ibraki and Kochi prefectures.Dishes include Shinshu salmon from and Shinshu beef round steak from Nagano and clams and cherry bass steamed in white wine from Ibraki.

Kochi grown tomatoes stuffed with red paprika mousse and white asparagus wrapped in Parma ham will also be served, as well as Hinohikari, a nationally celebrated brand of rice from Kochi.

Sake and shochu, the national spirits of Japan, are on offer in ANA’s Haneda, Narita and Kansai lounges.

Delta’s premium wine menu now boarding

March 7, 2017

An exclusive selection of premium wines is now available to Delta One customers flying between London Heathrow and the United States.

Delta’s Master Sommelier, Andrea Robinson said: “Delta’s unique wine programme provides an opportunity to offer a variety of regionally-sourced wines, including small, emerging and family-owned wineries, onboard to its customers. Each menu includes a rich diversity of regional origin, with wines that pair well with the flavours and cooking styles of the season.”

The vintages will appear on a rotating seasonal basis, with two different reds and whites available every three months. From June to August, one white will be substituted for a French rosé on flights to Delta’s eight US destinations from Heathrow.

Throughout the year, Business customers will also be offered Charles Heidsieck Brut champagne as well as dessert wine or port following the main meal service.

Robinson samples 1,600 different wines from around the world to curate her Delta selections. In addition to the Premium Programme, she also curates an Essential Delta One menu, one for South America and a fourth for US transcontinental routes.

Wessco gets onboard with Hawaiian

February 28, 2017

WESSCO has collaborated with Hawaiian Airlines on a range of new soft goods plus upgraded amenity kits for Business, Extra Comfort and Economy.

WESSCO manufactured premium bedding items including a quilt and lounging pillow adorned with a contemporary “‘Auli‘ilani lehua” floral pattern by local Hawaiian designer- Sig Zane Designs.

The lehua blossom is a native of the Hawaiian forests and inspired the patterns on the bedding items. The lounging pillow comes with an elastic band to keep it in place on the seat’s headrest or provides added comfort for lumbar support.

The new amenity kits also include the same floral motif and include Loli’i skincare items, created exclusively for Hawaiian Airlines, featuring their signature scent “Makiki Valley.”

Flying Food scores a double

February 28, 2017

For the second consecutive year, Flying Food Group’s Honolulu kitchen (HAL) has been named Hawaiian Airlines’ Domestic Kitchen of the Year (2016). The kitchen earned the same award for 2015.

This award for excellence in overall performance was announced by Paula Jansen, Hawaiian Airlines catering manager. The airline also awarded FFG HAL a Certificate of Excellence for meeting every monthly goal in 2016.

Hawaiian has been an FFG customer at HAL since 2013: the kitchen services 24 HA flights daily. Flying Food Group also services HA at New York JFK, Phoenix and San Francisco.

Hong Kong refreshes its amenities

February 21, 2017

Hong Kong Airlines has rolled out new amenity kits for all long haul flights in both Business and Economy.

The airline partnered with inflight experience specialists Clip and local design house Ricebowl Republic to create the new kits.

The refresh features a set of four individual amenity bags with iconic symbols of Hong Kong: the Star Ferry, the historic rickshaw, the tram and Hong Kong’s city skyline, representing different facets of Hong Kong heritage and culture. The interiors feature an eye-catching patterned lining.

The Business kit includes specially-designed eye masks and socks together with ear plugs, a dental set and a shea butter ultra-rich lip balm and hand cream from French skincare brand L’Occitane.

Economy customers receive an amenity pack with eye mask, socks, ear plugs and a dental set, neatly wrapped in a branded drawstring bag.

LSG bring retail to LATAM

February 21, 2017

LSG Group’s Retail inMotion division has introduced a new service model on LATAM Airlines’ domestic flights in Colombia.

The implementation of the new onboard retail concept is part of a larger agreement between LATAM Airlines Group and Retail inMotion Latin America that will cover domestic flights in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.

The new concept will roll out in the next six months, with Retail inMotion providing the airline with software for a full, end-to-end inflight retail technology platform.

In addition, the company will administer food and beverage services for LATAM Airlines Group in these markets.

LATAM Airlines is the leading airline in Latin America with one of the largest route networks in the world, offering flights to around 140 destinations in 25 countries.

LSG Sky Chefs is the current provider of traditional catering services for LATAM in various locations, including domestic flights in Chile.;

Garuda upgrades its amenity kits

February 21, 2017

Garuda has upgraded its amenity kits for First passengers in a collaboration with luxury brands Hermes and Clarins, facilitated by Wessco.

The new kit includes Hermès Eau d’Orange Verte perfumed body lotion and soothing face balm in an ultralight cloud-white pouch with flat drawstrings.

The bag is made of textured linen with a sleek microfibre upper section and strap. It is available in both light brown and blue and the reverse colourway. The inner lining features a re-interpretation of traditional Indonesian tenun. Tenun, or woven cloth, is part of Indonesia’s proud cultural heritage and a cultural art of the region.

The bag also includes a range of Clarins cosmetics consisting of moisture rich body lotion, moisture replenishing lip balm and HydraQuench cream. Comfort items include a hair brush, earplugs, eyeshades, slippers, a toothbrush and Colgate toothpaste.

The Economy kit has also been refreshed. Inspired by traditional Indonesian wax-resist cloth dyeing patterns, WESSCO collaborated with Garuda Indonesia to create its Batik motif-themed Economy kit series. This consists of three ultra-light amenity bags displaying modern re-interpretations of classic Indonesian designs. These are the Batik Kawung, representing the palm fruit; Batik Tirta Teja, which depicts a vivid interplay of water and light; and the Batik Tumpal, which is associated with magical attributes and symbolic meanings relating to the unity between humans and the universe. The bag contains eyeshades, socks and earplugs.

Delta adds free meals in the US

February 21, 2017

Delta is introducing complimentary meals on some of its longest domestic flights, including transcontinental routes between New York’s JFK and Los Angeles/San Francisco.

The airline will be the only U.S. carrier to offer complimentary fresh meals from nose to tail on selected coast-to-coast routes.

Beginning March 1, Delta will offer complimentary meals in the main cabin on flights between JFK and LAX/SFO. On April 24, the airline will expand complimentary meals to 10 other major domestic markets from Seattle, New York, Boston and Washington, D.C. including BOS-SFO, BOS-LAX, BOS-SEA, DCA-LAX, JFK-PDX, JFK-SAN, JFK-SEA, SEA-FLL, SEA-MCO and SEA-RDU.

The enhancement is part of Delta’s ongoing multi-million dollar investment in the onboard customer experience which includes upgraded main cabin snacks, enhanced blankets, refreshed Flight Fuel food-for-purchase options and free in-flight entertainment. Main cabin customers on long-haul international flights are also treated to complimentary beer, wine and spirits, plus sleep kits.

Delta’s new meal programme will feature a variety of options including a honey maple breakfast sandwich, Luvo breakfast medley or fruit and cheese plate on morning flights; mesquite-smoked turkey combo, Luvo Mediterranean whole grain veggie wrap, or fruit and cheese plate on afternoon flights and a breakfast bar during the pre-arrival beverage service on overnight flights.

Oman Air reports positive results

February 21, 2017

Oman Air Catering Services has posted positive results for 2016 despite volatile market conditions. Being awarded a new contract to supply inflight catering on British Airway’s London flights at the end of last year, for an initial period of three and a half years, is among highlights of the period.

In addition, Oman Air Catering Services recently won the contract with Royal Flight, a Russian-based charter airline, for three years. With a focus on quality and increased efficiency, Oman Air Catering Services division now offers services to 12 airlines worldwide (including its two newest contracts).

The Catering Services division has grown to have the capability to produce in excess of 18,000 meals a day. In the past year it has produced an extra one million meals. Oman Air Catering Services operates adjacent to Muscat Airport in a 10,000 square-metre halal-certified facility. The division employs around 650 staff with 74% of the work force being Omani.

Abdulaziz Alraisi, executive vp, products and brand development said: “Despite difficult trading conditions, we are delighted to announce these new contracts. Oman Air’s Catering Services division aims to replicate the vision of Oman Air as a whole, focusing on being the best, increasing efficiency and differentiating products and services through enhanced quality. Our talented team is derived from a multicultural array of nationalities which gives us an edge when developing and producing menus for our many international clients.”

The division currently holds the following certificates: ISO Certificate 22000:2005; ISO Certificate 9001:2008 and the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health from UK.

Get a taste for WTCE

February 14, 2017

The countdown to this year’s World Travel Catering Expo in Hamburg has begun and Onboard Hospitality is once again helping to pull together the Taste of Travel Theatre programme in association with the WTCE team.

At the heart of the action will be Onboard Hospitality’s Jo Austin who is pulling together a theatre programme set to be bigger and better than ever. Featuring 12 lively sessions over the full three days, the theatre will see no less than four celebrity or Michelin-star chefs in action, including Levi Roots, Mark Sargeant, Eero Vottonen and Trinh Diem Vy!

So make a date with the Taste of Travel Theatre and you’ll be able to learn from the experts about new technologies to tackle allergy challenges; how to get your product on board; improve your onboard product; meet the demands of the pre-order trend; and understand your passengers through neuroscience.

All sessions are free to attend with fantastic food samples up for grabs as well as plenty of interactive discussion and inspirational ideas.

Taste of Travel takes place during the World Travel Catering & Onboard Services Expo in Hamburg, April 4-6 2017. The Onboard Hospitality team will be based beside the Theatre on Stand 1G99. For more information or to register to attend the event:

Cathay partners Michelin Tosca

February 14, 2017

Cathay Pacific has partnered with Tosca, the Michelin-starred Italian restaurant at The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong, to launch a new inflight menu promotion.

From February 1 to April 30, the promotional menu will be served to First and Business passengers onboard selected flights departing from Hong Kong.

Culinary maestro Pino Lavarra of the award-winning Tosca has taken an inventive approach to the new menu while staying true to the rustic Italian flavours at the heart of his cuisine.

Dishes on the menu include octopus terrine and lemon and parsley salad, which the airline say will “delight passengers with an interesting contrast of temperature and texture between the terrine and the seared octopus layered on top.” The flavour profile is further highlighted by a hint of tanginess from the lemon mayo.

Beef short ribs, tomato pizzaiola sauce and eggplant, meanwhile, is prepared using a traditional poaching technique under low heat for five hours. Succulent and tender, the short ribs are paired with palate-pleasing herbed tomato sauce and mashed potato.

Another dish is lobster, almonds, romaine and pink pepper dressing, which features imported tomatoes from Europe. The dressing, created specially by Chef Pino, adds considerable flavour to the salad, while the tomatoes provide a vibrant colour contrast and natural sweetness.

Chef Pino added: “In the sky, there are no limits to your imagination. When working with Cathay Pacific I was particularly intrigued by the concept of creating intense flavour pairings that can offset the effect that flying at high altitude can have on the sensitivity of our taste buds. Much thought has been put into adjusting the cooking process and recipes to replicate Tosca’s signature dishes as closely as possible, retaining the essence of Italian flavour, refined presentation and consistency of quality.”

AK-Service renews with Aeroflot

February 14, 2017

AK-Service has renewed its contract to supply Business kits for Aeroflot with Salvatore Ferragamo products.

The renewal follows the ongoing success of the branded kits introduced last year. A new bag design was introduced for passengers on long-haul flights and designed to meet top-end expectations. It is a rich dark blue in colour.

The kit came with a significant upgrade of the contents, featuring high quality items from the Salvatore Ferragamo cosmetic range with the ‘Tuscan Soul’ fragrance: face cream, hand cream and lip balm.

LSG secures Etihad deal

February 14, 2017

The LSG Group (LSG) has entered into a global catering agreement with Etihad Airways within the framework of the new strategic commercial partnership between its parent company, Lufthansa German Airlines, and Etihad Aviation Group, unveiled last week.

The four-year $100 million catering agreement includes the provision of catering services to Etihad Airways in 16 cities in Europe, Asia-Pacific and the Americas. This makes LSG the largest provider of catering services to the UAE’s national airline outside its Abu Dhabi home base.

“This agreement with LSG is in line with Etihad Airways’ partnership strategy, working together with leading industry players around the world to ensure we continue offering our guests consistently high levels of service,” said Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways’ ceo.

In addition, LSG Group’s Spiriant has extended its contract with Czech Airlines (CSA) to cover the supply of around 120 inflight products. And Spiriant’s SkylogistiX, an expert in equipment logistics, will continue to offer CSA supply-chain management services. The range of products supplied and managed includes chinaware, glassware, rotable plastic trays, textiles, comfort items, galley equipment and amenity kits.

Retail inMotion charts growth

February 6, 2017

Retail inMotion is celebrating one year as a full member of the LSG Group by reporting outstanding sales growth in product, fully-outsourced onboard retail solutions and IT software solutions.

The company has won contracts with 14 new customers over the past twelve months and sales of proprietary products have seen a significant increase with more than two million Boxerchips and six million beverages with SuprLids sold in 2016.

In addition to setting up an expert development team in Dallas, Texas to fully reach the US American market, the company has also taken major steps to further expand into Latin America, Asia and the Middle East.

“Retail inMotion’s successful performance since its full integration into the LSG Group is a clear affirmation of the quality of solutions they provide to customers in the area of onboard retail,” remarked Erdmann Rauer, ceo, LSG Group. “With the complete backing of the LSG Group, Retail inMotion is uniquely positioned to continue growing its customer portfolio by offering its proprietary solutions to the airline industry.”

Retail inMotion’s IT solution, called Vector, now has nearly 30 customers. The online software suite has the functionality to control an airline’s complete, end-to-end retail process. It is customisable to customers’ needs, including functions like stock ordering, warehouse management, pre-order solutions, POS applications, payment gateway solutions, analytics and the ability to be fully integrated with customers’ existing IT systems. Vector is now flown on nearly 10% of daily global air traffic and has processed around 1 billion USD in sales.

Lights on for Lufthansa

February 6, 2017

Lufthansa will be the first airline worldwide to use a range of onboard lighting on the A350-900 designed to fit with the day and night-time biorhythms of its passengers.

The new aircraft will be fitted with lighting designed to match client biorhythms and hence counter the effects of jet-lag at the right time. Lighting effects will also be used to emulate a pleasant restaurant atmosphere onboard during mealtimes.

“The well-being of our passengers is of particular importance to us. So it represents a real milestone for us that we can now achieve these improvements with this innovative lighting technology”, says Dr. Reinhold Huber, who is responsible for further development in the area of customer experience.

Altogether, the new A350-900 LED technology can provide around 24 different lighting settings. Following on from the A350-900, Lufthansa will also be re-fitting its Boeing 747-800s with the new lighting system.

The use of a range of lighting settings is based on findings from research in the field of chronobiology. Warm light is used for relaxation during periods of rest, whereas cooler light provides stimulation for more active phases. Lufthansa has developed these various lighting moods in collaboration with lighting designers from Kardorff Ingenieure in Berlin.

Interior show opens in Dubai

February 6, 2017

Aircraft Interiors Middle East (AIME) opens this week and is expecting representatives from up to 100 airlines, including Emirates, Etihad Airways, Qatar Airways and flydubai, to attend the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) event.

Coming from further afield are Pakistan International Airlines, Royal Air Maroc and Air France. These buyer representatives will be able to meet with 300 exhibitors.

The Aircraft Interiors market is expected to grow from $16.87 billion in 2016 to $29.16 billion by 2021, according to Markets and Markets; while regional airlines have over 500 aircraft on order, almost 80% of which are widebodies.

With Emirates indicating it may be considering adding premium economy to its fleet within two years and large scale aircraft orders outstanding in the region, the demand for interiors options is a reality for buyers, and an opportunity for exhibitors at AIME.

AIME is co-located with MRO Middle East and runs from February 8-9 at DWTC, the eighth annual event. Over 4,500 visitors are expected to attend the show to network with the 300 exhibitors in the hall.

Star Alliance salutes FFG culinary team

February 6, 2017

Flying Food Group has chalked up a duo of successes with accolades from Star Alliance and Philippine Airlines.

Flying Food Group ORD and its culinary team earned its first accolades from industry ratings organisation Star Alliance after a luncheon it hosted for Star Alliance staff and O’Hare-based Star Alliance airline members. Thomas Trapp, deputy Star Alliance airport coordinator and station manager, ANA, described the event as “amazing and scrumptious.” He said to executive chef Moe Elmaher: “You all truly proved your skills and talents to us.”

Philippine Airlines (PAL) has also presented Flying Food Group Honolulu (HNL) with the Philippine Airlines Mubuhay Award Trophy for Best Airline Caterer, 2nd runner up, in the Transpacific, Australia and Europe Region (2015).

Jaime Arturo L. Viola, PAL senior assistant vp catering operations, presented the trophy to FFG vp of sales & service Bob Sun and HNL customer service manager Les Nakamura and their team at FFG’s Honolulu kitchen.

FFG HNL caters five weekly PAL flights. The airline has been an HNL customer since 2000.

Executive vp of airline sales Nicolas Rondeau said: “It is significant when a longtime customer — able to evaluate catering performance over time — honours FFG with a performance award.”

Skysupply does the business for SAA

February 6, 2017

Skysupply has supplied new Business amenity bags for South African Airways.

Designed to enhance the travel experience and “share Africa’s beauty, strength and spirit with the world”, this collaboration aims to show how a useful object can be turned into a collectors’ item and a meaningful statement at the same time.

The creative team designed inbound and outbound bags using the designs of the African fashion designer Mphelane Mareletse who symbolises a new, aspiring generation of self-confident African artists.

South African Airways’ brand purpose is to be “A Catalyst for African Growth”, and Mphelane is the first to be appointed to bring this vision to life. Over the coming months there will be other designers following Durban-born Mareletse to create a whole series of amenity kits.

Mphelane drew on her African roots and sense for aesthetics to interpret the SAA brand identity in a fresh, contemporary and natural way.

The holistic concept and design also appears in the Economy kits, designed to ensure the small item tells the story of a whole country and its exciting future – up in the air and on land.

American’s amenity upgrade

January 30, 2017

American Airlines has introduced new amenity kits in First and Business cabins on long-haul international services and transcontinental flights between New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

The new kits were co-designed and branded by lifestyle brand Cole Haan. Founded in Chicago in 1928, Cole Haan is known for its expertise in crafting premium footwear and accessories for both men and women.

Each kit includes a selection of skincare products from either C.O. Bigelow, 3Lab or Clark’s Botanicals, in addition to a redesigned eye mask, socks, ear plugs, toothbrush, toothpaste and headphone protectors.

The kits are available in four different colours – grey, burgundy, navy or black, with the international First variety designed to be re-used as a tablet holder. The new kits will be onboard all American flights by March.

Redesigned pyjamas have also been introduced for First passengers.

Sales recognition from Alpha LSG

January 30, 2017

Alpha LSG’s retail sales team has run its fourth conference, training and awards event supporting in-flight sales and recognising the sales achievements of Monarch cabin crew.

The two-day seminar in he UK was attended by 88 of Monarch’s best-performing cabin crew.

Richard Wood, Alpha LSG’s UK Sales and Marketing Director,
said Monarch’s cabin crew had achieved remarkable success during 2016 despite much political and economic turmoil. He said: “We are now in dialogue with customers before they depart through online channels, social media and e-mails – talking about the top-sellers, new products, and promotions and why they need to buy onboard – really engaging into the phenomenal service that crew deliver day in day out. We’re also launching new digital innovations, with interactive screens being installed into crew rooms.

“These screens are an exciting new way of providing information and up-to-the-minute news about the world of in-flight retail, top selling tips, and much more. These are another great step forward in keeping the crew well informed about how we are doing and simply what is happening. And of course – the developments around the retail programme don’t stop there. We are working together on many more new initiatives, exciting plans and new brands across 2017.”

Monarch’s cabin crew exceeded their ‘spend per-head’ targets during 2016 thanks to excellent customer engagement and dedicated sales performance.

A total of 27 prizes were handed out at this year’s OMG! Awards identifying Team of the Year – for biggest increase in spend per head target; Outstanding Positive Approach to Learning & Sales; Fair Trade Quiz based on supplier training seminar, Dedication to Incentives – awarded to the person making the biggest effort during the season, Monarch’s overall best performing team and Outstanding Sales Performance – awarded to each of Monarch’s UK bases.

Buzz blankets get on board Emirates

January 30, 2017

The 2016 winner of the Onboard Hospitality Award: Best for Sustainability has now been introduced onboard Emirates long-haul flights.

The ecoTHREAD sustainable blankets are made from 100% recycled plastic bottles and are created in partnership with Buzz using ecoTHREAD patented technology.

EGiven out in Economy, each Emirates ecoTHREAD blanket is made from 28 plastic bottles recycled into plastic chips before being turned into yarn with which to create a polar fleece material. The fine thread is then woven into soft blankets.

The environmentally-friendly blankets are part of Emirates’ continued commitment to product innovation and sustainability and part of a green programme which recycles aluminum cans, plastic and glass bottles, and clean paper products such as newspapers, magazines and cardboard cartons.

By the end of 2019, Emirates ecoTHREAD™ blankets will have rescued 88 million plastic bottles from landfills– equivalent to the weight of 44 A380 aircraft. In addition, the manufacturing process of using recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET) reduces energy emissions by 70%.

ecoTHREAD™ is certified with the Intertek Green Leaf Mark by third party testing and certification body Intertek, independently verified to use 100% recycled materials.

The airline has also introduced a plush, faux sheep-skin blankets in First and soft duvets in Business.

Regent’s foodie celebrations

January 30, 2017

Regent Seven Seas Cruises is preparing a fleet-wide celebration to mark the company’s 25th anniversary this year. Some 25 special voyages will feature a variety of exclusive onboard activities and events.

Guests sailing on the 25 special anniversary voyages will be offered a new dining concept being launched exclusively for the anniversary and featuring a special lunch buffet in the Compass Rose galley. Travelling down a red carpet that extends from the restaurant into the galley, guests will see the kitchen come to life and interact with the world-class chefs onboard.

Inside the galley a buffet of treats will be set-up, featuring freshly baked bread, a turkey carving station, made-to-order pasta and other hot dishes such as local fresh fish, salmon, lamb curry and Zurich-style veal. An elaborate array of desserts will also be presented inside the restaurant on a large decorative display table.

Silver Anniversary Tastings on these 25 voyages will include complimentary inclusive fine wines and spirits, and special wine, whiskey and cocktail tasting seminars featuring some exclusive vintages and premier spirits.

You decide!

January 24, 2017

Voting for the 2017 Onboard Hospitality Awards will close in one week, on February 1. Your vote could decide the finalists so please get involved today!

These awards seek out and recognise those products which have truly changed the onboard hospitality industry for the better.

Onboard Hospitality Editor, Julie Baxter, says: “These awards are now at the heart of the onboard hospitality industry and we have been overwhelmed by the interest and excitement they have generated. The caliber of entries shows just what a creative and innovative industry we operate in and the key to the value placed on winning is the fact that you – the buyers and suppliers of onboard hospitality – play a part in identifying our winners. Uniquely, your vote counts so do use it and help decide which products go before our panel of distinguished judges.

“We recommend voting via a desktop computer rather than mobile device so you can easily view both the products seeking your vote and the voting form you need to complete at the same time.”

After the voting stage closes the finalists will go in front of a prestigious judges who decide on the winners.

Check them all out and and vote today!

Crystal clear deal for Singapore

January 24, 2017

Singapore Airlines and French crystal maker Lalique have forged a partnership which will see the airline exclusively carry selected inflight items co-branded with Lalique in its Suites and First Class cabins.

The partnership is set to start with the launch of Singapore Airlines’ next batch of Airbus A380s, featuring all-new cabin products. Deliveries of these are due to begin in the second half of this year

Swiss-based Lalique specialises in decorative crystal-ware, interior decor, perfumes, jewellery, art and hospitality and the two partners intend to offer co-branded items such as amenity kits, toiletries, glassware, loungewear and bedding.

A range of Lalique items will be promoted in SIA’s KrisShop Magazine which offers inflight sales as well as mail order with home delivery and exclusive offers to frequent flyers.

Other onboard initiatives will relate to Lalique’s manufacturing site and its Michelin-rated restaurant in France. Lifestyle and crystal gift items will also be offered to customers as part of the amenity kits on selected flights.

Air Transat adds bistro menu

January 24, 2017

Canadian leisure airline Air Transat has introduced a new and improved bistro menu for the summer season.

From May 1 passengers travelling from the UK & Ireland to Canada will benefit from a new and improved complimentary menu featuring a choice of three traditional hot dishes – pasta, chicken and beef – along with salad, a glass of wine or soft drink and dessert.

Return flights, which are overnight services, will offer a choice of three sandwiches – ham and brie, Mediterranean chicken and roasted vegetables – also served with salad, a glass of wine and dessert.

Air Transat flies directly from London Gatwick to Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary and Montreal, from Manchester and Glasgow to Toronto and Vancouver, and Birmingham to Toronto; as well as from Dublin to Toronto and Montreal.

All Air Transat flights include hold luggage, meals and soft drinks on board, plus in-flight entertainment.

Air Transat continues to offer special dietary meal requests available to pre-book in advance of travel.

In 2016, Air Transat was named Best North American Leisure Airline for the fifth consecutive year by Skytrax.

Galileo acquires Watermark

January 18, 2017

Galileo Group has acquired Watermark Products with ambitious plans to become a market leader in onboard amenities.

The boards of directors of both companies have unanimously approved the merger and the companies will be integrated to function as one, under the leadership of Ian Linaker, CEO of Galileo Group.

Headquartered in London, Galileo Group has focused on innovation and design for the luxury travel sector; experiencing strong growth and increasing global reach in recent years.

It is committed to challenging the status quo of aviation and design with strategic partnerships, supported by enterprise-led, commercially competitive sourcing.

Watermark Products, established in 1985, has evolved from a London-based start up serving the newly-formed Virgin Atlantic, to an industry player working with many of the world’s leading airlines and offering a comprehensive product portfolio across all main onboard product categories.

The newly-merged company will be known as Galileo Watermark and will integrate staff and leading designers across four offices worldwide: New York, London, Hong Kong and Sydney.

Image: Galileo Air Seychelles business class kit

Qantas tops the safety ratings

January 17, 2017

Safety and product rating website,, has announced its top 20 safest airlines and top ten safest low-cost airlines for 2017 from the 425 it monitors.

Top of the list for the fourth year is Australia’s Qantas, which has a fatality-free record in the jet era. Making up the remainder of the top 20 in alphabetical order are: Air New Zealand, Alaska Airlines, All Nippon Airways, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Delta Air Lines, Etihad Airways, EVA Air, Finnair, Hawaiian Airlines, Japan Airlines, KLM, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airline System, Singapore Airlines, Swiss, United Airlines, Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia.

In making its selections takes into account numerous factors that include: audits from aviation’s governing bodies and lead associations; government audits; airline’s crash and serious incident record; profitability and fleet age.

The website’s team also identified its top 10 safest low-cost airlines. These are in alphabetical order: Aer Lingus, Flybe, HK Express, Jetblue, Jetstar Australia, Jetstar Asia, Thomas Cook, Virgin America, Vueling and Westjet.

Green Gourmet refreshes

January 17, 2017

Green Gourmet has relaunched its logo to better reflect its offer and mission.

The refreshed design includes an abstract blend of greens to portray collaboration between departments, the mixing of ideas, and the light and shade of the company’s creativity. A new and hand-crafted fluid font aims to show the friendly, modern and approachable personality of the team.

A revised supporting strapline ‘food innovation’ sums up what the company aims to offer through new products, clever packaging, new systems, its people and their skills.

Middle East set for growth

January 17, 2017

The 4th World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo Middle East (WTCEME) is predicting strong growth for catering and hospitality in the region as aviation grows at five per cent a year.

Latest statistics from International Air Transport Association (IATA) suggest there will be an extra 258 million passengers a year on routes to, from and within the region by 2035. The UAE, Qatar and Saudi Arabia will all enjoy strong growth of 6.3 per cent, 4.7 per cent, and 4.1 per cent respectively.

Co-located with the Airport Show 2017, WTCEME, will take place from May 15-17, 2017, at Zabeel Hall 6 in Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Daniyal Qureshi, group exhibition director, Reed Exhibitions Middle East, said: “The event will this year provide an ideal opportunity for buyers and sellers to tap into the rapid growth in the travel catering segment in the Middle East. Due to this strong interest, the 4th edition of WTCEME will be the largest ever. As the Middle East’s aviation sector witnesses a strong growth, and the region continues with major investments and initiatives to boost tourism, the interest, especially from global players, is bound to continue rising.”

Get set for WTCE

January 10, 2017

We’re revving up for Hamburg, are you? As the festive decorations go back into the attic, it is time to dust off your promotional plans and get set for the first industry gathering of the year: the World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo, in April.

Onboard Hospitality’s team will be there in force, helping to run the Taste of Travel Theatre and keen to hear your news and developments. Publisher Sue Williams says: “We are proud to be media sponsor for this event and are already pulling together our preview issue. If you’re going to be there, do get in touch now, to be sure you don’t miss your chance to be a part of our biggest and most dynamic issue of the year. Let us help you make the most of your attendance at WTCE and drive visitors to your stand.”

This year’s event will see a new dedicated focus on World Travel Retail to reflect the growing number of travel retail suppliers participating in the show. In addition to exhibition space, this area will feature a networking bar, a seminar theatre and a suite of private meeting rooms hosted by brand and product suppliers, all showcasing products and services for inflight purchase.

The Passenger Experience Conference, allied to the event, will include new features and formats as well as sessions on generating revenue, the connected journey and comfort and wellbeing. There will also be a new forum exclusively for airlines prior to the conference opening session.

Sushi flies high

January 10, 2017

London Heathrow reports a growing trend towards healthy eating choices in a survey of meals bought for onboard, pre-departure.

2016 data shows sushi took the top spot for dining at 30,000 feet while more refillable bottles than ever are being recharged in the departure lounge. Sandwiches and salads under 500 calories still feature in the top five as the second and third items most bought for onboard eating, with noodles and pasta completing the top five. Dropping out of the top five list of 2015 go pastries and pizza.

Avocado is proving to be the most coveted ingredient for both meals taken onboard and eaten in airport restaurants and is now a staple ingredient in sushi, sandwiches, noodles and salads in grab-and go-outlets, with sales increasing by 23% year-on-year.

Sales of Gordon Ramsay’s Plane Food picnics, Fortnum & Mason’s hamperlings and Caviar House’s seafood hampers have seen double digit growth demonstrating passenger demand for quality in convenience-on-the-move choices.

Qatar Airways partners with The White Company

January 10, 2017

Qatar Airways has launched a new partnership with The White Company to provide exclusively-designed sleepwear to its First and Business passengers.

The newly-designed sleeper suits are individually styled for men and women – the men’s in a charcoal grey marl and the women’s in a mid-grey hue.

Both are made of 100% cotton and come with matching luxury cotton slippers with a faux fur interior sole for extra warmth and comfort.

The White Company is known globally for its home wear, designer-quality white linens, home accessories and clothing and nightwear.

The partnership is set to last three years, with new additions of the sleeper suits issued regularly in a range of fresh colours and styles.

First passengers travelling onboard Qatar Airways’ A380 flights to London, Bangkok, Paris, Sydney and Guangzhou will receive the new sleeper suits with immediate effect and the product will debut in Business Class in early 2017.

Qatar Airways’ senior vp of customer experience, Rossen Dimitrov, said: “This partnership with an iconic global brand, known for providing sumptuous style and beautifully designed products, perfectly complements the bespoke premium experience created on board for our travellers.”

Awards for TFK

January 10, 2017

Tokyo caterer TFK has been recognised with two awards at Air China’s Annual Catering Conference in Chengdu, China.

TFK Corporation won ‘Best Service Award 2016’ and the ‘Best Catering Award 2016’.

The company was the only non-Chinese inflight caterer to have been given two awards in the 2016 ceremony. The Best Catering Award is selected by Air China’s Inflight Service team and the Best Service Award is decided on by Air China’s cabin crew. In 2015, TFK was also awarded the ‘Best Worldwide Catering Award’.

The awards recognise excellent added-value menu development work carried out with the Air China Inflight Services team in the summer of 2016, when TFK was asked to come up with a new way to present Air China’s Japanese cuisine. The introduction of a disposable Kaiseki Bento Box followed further work with the Japanese Culinary Team to offer three attractive meal box options featuring Japanese delicacies which change in line with the seasons.

This is offered as the appetizer service to all Business passengers and is followed with a choice of Western, Japanese or Chinese hot main courses, steamed rice, pickles and miso soup, all served on Air China flights from Narita and Haneda International Airports to Beijing, Shanghai and Chengdu in China. The Bento Box has been extremely successful and is popular with cabin crew and passengers.

TFK serves Air China on 64 flights per week and has been serving Air China for over 40 years. TFK Corporation is the largest and oldest inflight caterer in Japan and is now a member of the SATS Group.

Eco cruise initiative

January 10, 2017

Royal Caribbean has released its latest Sustainability Report documenting widespread efforts onboard its fleet to cut emissions and waste.

Over the past decade the cruise line has built its most efficient cruise ships and reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 25%. In 2015 17 ships achieved 100% re-purposed waste on certain itineraries.

The expansion of an Advanced Emissions Purification Programme and new goals for 2020 have been developed in consultation with company’s global conservation partner, World Wildlife Fund.

Successes detailed in the report included a reduction in daily water consumption average and the introduction of an industry-first software system to ensure the best possible fuel efficiency. Royal Caribbean has also been added to the 2016 World’s Most Ethical Companies list – a distinction granted to only 130 companies in 21 countries – and has committed to only sourcing cage-free eggs and gestation-crate-free pork by 2022.

Gategroup acquires Servair share

January 4, 2017

Air France entered into exclusive discussions with HNA Group (HNA) for the sale of its inflight catering unit Servair and the transfer of operational control with a view to creating the world-class leader in inflight catering.

Following the takeover of gategroup by HNA, gategroup has stepped into the transaction between HNA and Air France, acquiring control over Servair as of 1 January 2017.

gategroup has acquired 50% minus one share in Servair for an enterprise value of EUR 237,5 million (on a 50% basis). The transaction will be solely financed by gategroup and is designed to create an unprecedented offering in the inflight catering business serving more than 300 airline customers in more than 200 facilities with 39,000 employees.

Servair will complement gategroup’s global network with a strong presence in France and Africa. Annual group revenue following the acquisition is projected to exceed CHF 4.4 billion.

Xavier Rossinyol, ceo of gategroup, commented: “We warmly welcome Servair and its employees into a partnership that will be highly beneficial for both sides. The new group will aim to take advantage of the best competences of both gategroup and Servair and at the same time to have the most global network worldwide to better serve our customer. We will operate as one group with global leadership. With this new step we will be able to further accelerate the strategy of efficiencies and growth.”

Brussels puts Michelin menus on board

January 4, 2017

Brussels Airlines is offering meals prepared by Michelin starred chef Yves Mattagne to Business passengers flying to Africa, New York, the US or India from January to June.

Mattagne is the chef of the two-Michelin star restaurant, Seagrill, in Brussels and has designed a different menu for each month and Grégory Baillet, head of product at Brussels Airlines, says: “The cooperation with Yves Mattagne is a win-win for both of us. We get to offer our passengers a high quality gastronomic experience at 30,000 feet in the sky and live up to our role as national carrier by being an international ambassador for a great Belgian restaurant.”

Mattagne is the eighth Belgian star chef to create menus for Brussels Airlines. Others have included Peter Goossens (Hof van Cleve), Pierre Résimont (L’Eau Vive) and Geert van Hecke (De Karmeliet). “The concept is very much appreciated by passengers, but this time we added an extra touch, by choosing a chef from our capital city, Brussels,” adds Grégory Baillet.

Mattagne says: “Creating gastronomy for an airline is not easy, but it was a challenge I gladly accepted for Brussels Airlines because with this collaboration we can carry the best of Belgium around the world.”

The airline also serves Belgian beers on board, its crew uniforms are designed by Belgian brands Xandres, Bellerose and Ambiorix and in the last two years Brussels Airlines has repainted three of its planes with special liveries dedicated to Belgian icons Tintin, Magritte, Red Devils

Qatar adds style for all ages

January 4, 2017

Qatar Airways has updated its amenity kits for children and forged a new onboard partnership for kits in First and Business.

The children’s activity kits now included plush infant toys Elefun and Mr. Potato Head alongside classic Clue Junior, Guess Who, Monopoly Here and Now World Edition and The Game of Life for older children.

The airline’s children’s meals also now feature new Pictureka or Monopoly designed lunch boxes – a gift that children can take home and use long after their flight.

Special thought has been paid to families travelling on overnight flights with the introduction of a glow-in-the-dark Clue Junior entertainment pack; perfect to keep restless youngsters busy once the lights are dimmed.

Young travellers an also be entertained via the Oryx One inflight entertainment system which includes a dedicated children’s platform and the first dual-screen interface; allowing children to multi-task by playing a game while watching a movie.

For premium passengers Qatar Airways has signed an exclusive three-year partnership with BRICS and Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio to elevate the airline’s premium cabin experience.

BRICS, the Italian maker of stylish travel bags, has created a bespoke premium amenity bag inspired by their world-famous Bellagio series. The kits exclusively feature products from Italy’s Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio, the environmentally friendly olive oil company, including lip balm, hydrating facial mist and City Cream anti-ageing moisturiser in Business, with the added night recovery cream for First kits.

FFG caters new Singapore route

January 4, 2017

Flying Food Group (FFG) is catering new daily services for Singapore Airlines between San Francisco and Singapore.

The A350 Airbus flights, which launched at the end of October offer a direct, non-stop service between the cities. The launch aircraft was the 10,000th aircraft built by Airbus since production began in the 1970s.

SQ has been a valued FFG customer at SFO since 2002. This new, non-stop flight signals advanced passenger comfort and amenities: FFG sayts it is proud to help support Singapore’s continuing growth and success.

FFG also services SQ at New York JFK.

Emirates adds luxury

January 4, 2017

Emirates has added a range of exclusive, new products in its First and Business cabins including First Class lounge wear, luxury blankets, skincare from VOYA and a new range of amenity kits from Bulgari.

The airline has partnered with experts in their respective fields to upgrade its offer which includes a partnership with Matrix to bring moisturising pyjamas onboard. Using Hydra Active Microcapsule Technology designed to keep skin hydrated during the flight, the patented technology uses billions of capsules applied to the fabric which gently releases naturally-moisturising sea kelp during movement.

There are newly-introduced soft duvets in charcoal grey in Business and skincare products from award-winning Irish brand VOYA. Created exclusively for Emirates, this skincare line includes shampoo, conditioner, body wash, cleanser, body moisturiser, hand wash, soap and hand cream in three fragrances available in the signature A380 shower spa on board and in Emirates lounges.

The airline has partnered with luxury Italian brand Bulgari for its latest amenity kit bags for both First and Business featuring Bulgari’s woody floral fragrance – Eau Parfumée au thé noir – and skincare essentials.

Emirates gets festive

December 21, 2016

Emirates has ramped up its onboard product offering with festive menus across all cabin classes during the Christmas season.

The special menu includes items such as roast turkey and yule log cakes and reflects the airline’s commitment to providing regional and seasonal menus using fresh ingredients.

Customers travelling in Economy Class will be offered rolled turkey buffé served with cranberry jus lié, mashed potatoes, chicken sausage and seasonal vegetables. For desserts, customers will be served festive chocolate pudding with spiced ginger custard.

Those travelling in First and Business Class will start with poached king prawns with Marie Rose sauce and fennel with lemon and herbs and enjoy a main course of rolled turkey buffé served with chestnut stuffing, cranberry jus lié, pumpkin mash and brussel sprouts with turkey rashers and cream. A variety of desserts is available on the different routes including chocolate pudding, chocolate and chestnut torte and yule log.

First customers will also receive luxury hot chocolate handmade with 100% Valrhona chocolate.

A special kids menu is available with roast turkey, sweet potato mash, carrots and peas, as well as a candy cane and Emirates’ Little Travellers chocolate buttons as an added treat. As part of the Emirates Fly With Me Animals, a fifth character now greets young travellers this December. Eve, the reindeer, joins Eric the eagle, Silka the seal, Abbott the hedgehog and Shane the Koala.

EVA Air tracks luggage

December 21, 2016

EVA Air is collaborating with RIMOWA – one of Europe’s leading travel and carry-on luggage manufacturers – to introduce the use of cutting-edge electronic tags into the carrier’s check-in procedures.

Becoming the first airline is Asia and the second worldwide to officially offer the new service, EVA Air passengers and owners of RIMOWA’s hard-wearing suitcases can now use the EVA Air Mobile App and RIMOWA’s electronic tag system for a seamless check-in experience.

The RIMOWA electronic tag is a revolutionary, eco-friendly and time-saving travel concept, which allows EVA Air passengers to fast-track through the usual airport check-in procedure, skipping long, tiresome queues and processing their luggage – within seconds – from just about anywhere in the world! With just one click, travellers can connect EVA Air’s App to their luggage and confirm all e-tag information on an electronic panel built in to the side of the RIMOWA suitcase. On completion of the e-tag check-in process, passengers simply drop their luggage at the airport’s designated ‘online check-in counter’, before starting their journey with EVA Air.

Initially, the new e-tag baggage check-in service will be available for all passengers travelling outbound from a number of international airports, including Paris; Vienna; San Francisco; Seattle; Houston; New York; Vancouver; Toronto; and Tokyo, with plans to add more airports in the near future.

Recognition for Alitalia

December 13, 2016

Alitalia’s onboard catering has won recognition for the seventh consecutive year from the readers of US publication Global Traveler.

The ‘Best Airline Cuisine’ accolade was awarded following a passenger survey in the magazine of nearly 30,000 frequent flyers.

Aubrey Tiedt, Alitalia’s chief customer officer, said: “It’s hugely gratifying to see that the quality and variety of the Italian cuisine we have onboard our flights is recognised in a positive light by discerning frequent flyers.”

Alitalia has made huge investments in the past 18 months on inflight products and service delivery introducing the ‘Dine Anytime’ concept in long-haul Business which allows r customers to decide when they want to eat. Different regional Italian recipes change every three months and cabin crew are encouraged to work as ambassadors of Italian and provide a ‘Made of Italy’ experience.

Business meals include Liparota style short pasta, swordfish rolls with capers from Pantelleria, rosemary potatoes and Sicilian caponata, San Daniele cured ham served with vegetables compote and “chicken supreme with a Montasio cheese heart accompanied by Tecia style potatoes and fresh asparagus’.

Italian food is accompanied by a wide range of the best Italian wines carefully selected by Alitalia’s official sommelier and served by cabin crew trained by the Italian Sommelier Foundation.

Alpha LSG wins ANA

December 13, 2016

Alpha LSG has been awarded a new contract by Japan’s largest airline ANA, All Nippon Airways, to service flights from London-Heathrow to Tokyo.

Alpha LSG’s long standing relationship with ANA in the UK spans 27 years since the company began providing inflight services to the airline at London-Gatwick in 1989.

The new agreement sees Alpha LSG provide around 400,000 meals annually across First, Business and Economy to ANA’s daily long haul flights to Tokyo.

The caterer will service the ANA contract from a dedicated Japanese kitchen facility with Alpha LSG’s chefs also creating Western menus for the carrier.

Richard Wood, Alpha LSG’s managing director said: “ANA is a valued customer who we have worked with for many years. This new agreement is a great endorsement for our entire team but in particular underpins the success of our exclusive Japanese and Asian kitchen, and the immense quality of the authentic food that we produce for our customers on a daily basis.

Flying Food trio

December 13, 2016

Flying Food Group (FFG) has added catering services for three major customers worldwide.

It will cater ANA out of Honolulu three times a day; KLM out of Miami daily and SAS out of Chicago twice daily.

It also serves ANA out of JFK, ORD, SEA, SFO/SJC; KLM out of LAX, ORD and SFO and
SAS from EWR and MIA.

ANA became a FFG customer in 1998; KLM has been with FFG since 1999; SAS has chosen FFG catering since 1998.

Retail innovation from RIM

December 13, 2016

Retail inMotion, a subsidiary of the LSG Group, has developed a pre-order IT solution with the capability to allow passengers to choose from an airline’s inflight meal selection before their date of departure.

The pre-order solution, originally developed for Ryanair, is scalable and can be integrated into any airline’s booking system to provide order information in real time.

“The development of our pre-order solution took just ten weeks and is a great picture of how customer-centric we are at Retail inMotion,” said Stefan Patermann, cco Retail inMotion. “The implementation of the software extends passengers’ onboard experience to the ground and it is a true advantage for any airline looking to further develop their passenger interfaces.”
In combination with the rollout of the pre-order solution, Retail inMotion collaborated with Ryanair to introduce a premium Irish breakfast meal box for passengers. The hot breakfast includes a selection of traditional Irish breakfast items and is served with orange juice and a hot drink. Packaged in a picnic-style box that unfolds into a picnic blanket, the breakfast entices passengers to enjoy a traditional Irish meal in a non-traditional and entertaining way.

Tapas at sea

December 13, 2016

Oceania Cruises has added a new evening tapas menus onboard.

There are more than five-dozen dishes included in the 14 new menus, offered as sharing small plates inspired by destinations within the cruise’s itinerary

Developed over the course of a year, these menus were created by Oceania Cruises’ culinary team and are crafted from fresh ingredients that reflect the vibrancy of the destinations visited.

Tapas highlights include: crostini with bresaola (a very lean Italian air-cured beef aged up to 3 months), gorgonzola and fig compote; fresh caramelized shrimp with onions and spicy chili sauce presented in a tasting spoon; vegetarian summer rolls with fresh herbs, tofu, rice noodles and a tamarind and peanut sauce; watermelon sweet Thai salad with cashews, fresh herbs, cucumber and sweet chili; heirloom cherry tomato salad with Greek caper leaves; molten cheese soufflé with chive velouté; porcini and forest mushroom timbale with crema di grana padano and homemade vegetarian samosas with raita sauce.

Gudetama gets onboard EVA

December 13, 2016

EVA Air has added to its range of branded Sanrio family aircraft with an exclusive Gudetama themed livery and onboard offer.

Adding to its existing and popular Hello Kitty and Sanrio-character services, EVA will operate the brightly liveried Gudetama Comfort flights on regional and short-haul routes within Asia.

Born in 2013, Gudetama is an egg with arms and legs and one of Sanrio’s youngest and most popular characters. Cute and easy-going, Gudetama is always sunny-side-up on EVA’s aircraft and the new livery captures the relaxing spirit of the bright yellow Gudetama as he leisurely packs his sunglasses, camera, hat and bacon blanket into his bag, as he prepares to fly away on a memorable holiday.

Onboard flight attendants wear aprons embellished with the Gudetama design and passengers use inflight service items depicting the character including Gudetama headrest covers, pillows, safety cards, beverage menus, disposable hand towels, tray mats, napkins, cups, meal boxes, food trays, chopstick wrappers, utensils, meals, snacks, floss picks, slippers and playing cards.

Passengers can also pre-order Gudetama aircraft models and travel kits on the EVA Skyshop website.

Winning flavours

November 16, 2016

United Airlines will next week unveil its enhanced seasonal menu as part of the launch of the United Polaris service, a redesigned international business class.

This service will include new specialty beverage options for premium cabin travellers, building on the recognition the airline received for its Moscow Mule cocktail, winner of the 2016 Onboard Hospitality Awards for the Best Onboard Beverage.

On long-haul international flights, customers will now also have the opportunity to build their own Bloody Mary or specialty Mimosa, or undertake some wine-tasting inflight.
A spokesman for the airline said: “Winning the 2016 award has encouraged us to continue to find only the best and brightest new onboard offerings for our customers. We are honoured to be recognised by Onboard Hospitality and look forward to the competition again next year!”

The judges commented on the Moscow Mule, by Crafthouse Cocktails, at the Awards ceremony in April, saying: “Vodka based, this has a sharp, clean and gingery flavour and comes ready mixed so ideal for onboard. It is made using all natural ingredients and that comes through in the taste”
If you have an onboard beverage you’re proud of enter it now for the 2017 Awards.

We’re recognising excellence Get involved.

Alaska adds Premium

November 16, 2016

Alaska Airlines will debut its upgraded main cabin seating, now called Premium Class, on January 5.

Premium Class seats will have 35 inches of legroom, which is 3 to 4 inches more than passengers in Economy and will passengers for this cabin receive priority boarding.

To unveil its Premium Class offering, Alaska is reconfiguring its fleet of Boeing 737 and Embraer E175 aircraft. The carrier said approximately half of the fleet will be reconfigured by the official start of the Premium Class service in January, with the remainder to be reconfigured in 2017.

The aircraft interior work is also enabling Alaska to increase first-class legroom from 36 inches to either 41 or 42 inches.

British Airways squeezes its rows

November 16, 2016

British Airways is planning to increase the number of seats on its Boeing 777 economy class flights from 280 to 332 by adding an extra seat per row.

Currently, BA’s 777 economy seats feature nine per row in a 3-3-3 configuration but it plans to move to a 3-4-3 model by introducing narrower seats, increasing the cabin capacity by 52.

A spokesperson for British Airways said: “We are flying more customers than ever before to our expanding network of destinations. To meet this demand, we are updating our 777 cabins to bring us into line with many of our competitors and allow us to offer even more low fares.”

American Airlines, BA’s joint venture partner across the Atlantic, currently has a 3-4-3 layout in its economy cabin on B777s as do a host of other airlines such as Emirates.
The refurbishment on British Airways’ aircraft will also include new entertainment systems, with bigger screens.

“British Airways continues to offer customers a generous hand baggage allowance and complimentary food and drink on all our long-haul services”, the spokesperson added.
The airline is also expected to overhaul its long-haul business class cabins in due course.

Hawaiian partners Korean chef

November 16, 2016

Hawaiian Airlines has a new partnership with Korean celebrity chef Chang-Wook Chung to create inflight meals for on its Incheon to Honolulu routes.

Blending Hawaiian and Korean fare the menus have been designed exclusively for the airline by one of Korea’s most notable chefs and will include Pan Asian and island-style cuisine.

Chef Chung is an expert in French and Japanese cuisine as well as the owner and chef of restaurant Bistro Chaugi located in Jongno-gu, Seoul. His culinary excellence has been widely recognised by the Korean public, and he has appeared in several Korean television programmes.

Chef Chung says: “I try to combine my experiences in Hawai’i into my own style of cooking and am delighted to share the Aloha Spirit through Hawaiian Airlines’ inflight meals.”

For Business dishes include braised Korean kalbi with radish, miso soup, steamed brown rice, Kimchi, and pickled radish served after take-off. Prior to landing, passengers can choose between a full breakfast with chicken cream stew with carrots, broccoli, and potatoes or a light continental breakfast.

There are also new options in Extra Comfort and Main Cabin.
Hawaiian’s in-flight meals are updated every six months and new selections are based on seasonal ingredients and guest preference.

FFG caters new Singapore route

November 8, 2016

Flying Food Group (FFG) has been awarded the contract to supply catering for Singapore Airlines’ direct, non-stop service between San Francisco and Singapore.

Flying Food Group is catering the daily A350 Airbus flights, which launched on October 23. The launch aircraft was the 10,000th aircraft built by Airbus since production began in the 1970s.

Singapore has been a FFG customer at SFO since 2002. FFG also services SQ at New York JFK.

New culinary collaboration for Finnair

Finnair has a new partnership with Finnish Chef Eero Vottonen for its latest Signature Menu.

The new collaboration will bring true Nordic elements to Finnair’s long-haul Business service out of Helsinki to all destinations as from January 11, 2017.

Last year, Eero Vottonen was selected as Finland’s candidate for the prestigious Bocuse d’Or culinary competition in Lyon, France which brings 24 chefs from different countries to compete on the international stage. He has worked in the top kitchens of Finland including restaurants such as Chez Dominique, Luomo, G.W. Sundmans and Olo.

Maarit Keränen, head of inflight service at Finnair, said: “With next year marking Finland’s centennial anniversary, it’s a great opportunity for us to collaborate with Finland’s candidate for the Bocuse d’Or competition.

Milk Jnr’s goes to sea

November 8, 2016

Milk Jnr’s & Kidworks has produced and launched two new onboard packs for Thomson Cruises’ fleet of five ships.

The Milk Jnr’s & Kidworks team was appointed following the successful roll out last year of the packs that it created for TUI Group’s various airlines: TUIfly Nordic, Holland’s Arkefly, Belgium’s Jetairfly and Thomson Airways in the UK.

The new concepts for Thomson Cruises include a Check-In Pack that is handed to children when they board and an Ocean Travel Adventures Treasure Chest which awaits every child when they arrive at their cabin.

The packs aim to engage children from the moment they start their holiday and include a lanyard list of ‘things to do and see card’ encouraging young travellers to explore the ship and to interact with staff and crew.

The Ocean Travel Adventures Pack, which is a TUI branded treasure chest, is made up of interactive items including an activity book, crayons, stencils, stickers and an underwater themed board game which the whole family can play together. Once their holiday is over, children can then take their pack onshore and continue the activities once they are at home.

Smurfs get onboard with Brussels Airlines

November 1, 2016

Brussels Airlines has launched new kids amenity kits themed around The Smurfs.

More than 50 years after Brussels-born comic artist Peyo brought them to life, The Smurfs remain popular all around the globe. The adventures of the more than 100 Smurf characters who live in the Smurf village and fight against the wizard Gargamel, have resulted in more than 40 comics, more than 400 cartoon series episodes and two 3D films.

The famous blue-skinned characters now fly onboard Brussels Airlines’ flights to the States, Canada or Africa as Smurf lunch boxes with colouring books, memory games and finger puppets. The child meals that are served in these boxes (meatballs in tomato sauce and pasta) have been selected after a tasting session where more than 60 kids gave their input. Children flying on the short haul network in Flex&Fast or Bizz&Class, receive a Smurf lunchbox on their flight out of Brussels.

Specially for Brussels Airlines, graphic studio IMPS, who exploits the rights of Peyo’s work, created new Smurf characters: Captain Smurf and Cabin Crew Smurfette don the lunch boxes, as well as Safari Smurf who travels to Africa.

Anne Tricot, vp customer experience at Brussels Airlines, said: “The partnership with the Smurfs is a logical one for us, as we always aim to promote the best of Belgium. After Tintin, René Magritte, Belgian gastronomy, Belgian beers and Belgian chocolate, the Smurfs are another world renowned Belgian ambassador to come onboard at Brussels Airlines.”

Last year, the airline launched, a free travel package that includes a 20% discount for children (2-11 years) and 90% discount for infants (under 2), 12 kilograms hand luggage per child, priority boarding and guaranteed seats together for the entire family, discount for airport parking, and more.

New meals for Air France Business

November 1, 2016

Servair is continuing its collaboration with chef Guy Martin who has created six meals now featuring on the new Air France Business menu flying long-haul from Paris.

Michelin-starred Martin, a founding member of the Servair Culinary Studio, has been training the Servair teams since 2002 and a different dish from the new range will be offered every fortnight to ensure frequent travellers regularly find something new.

Guy Martin has trained the Servair chefs in the making and presenting his Signature Meals which include: pan-cooked prawns, broccoli with ginger, butternut purée and a shellfish jus with flat-leaf 
parsley; sautéed veal seasoned with melegueta pepper, with organic maize penne, vegetables and 
pearl onions; roasted guinea fowl breast, carrot and cardamom ketchup, organic red quinoa like a risotto 
with cranberry jus; orecchiette pasta with squid and rocket on a tomato base flavoured with coriander seeds; veal chuck, sautéed porcini mushrooms, smooth artichoke purée with an organic beetroot and blackcurrant jus; and cod loin fillet, basmati rice in turmeric, crushed courgette with cashew nuts, and coconut sauce seasoned with espelette pepper.

Clip gets onboard with Jetblue

November 1, 2016

Jetblue has partnered with Clip to introduce new custom-designed amenity kits from New York City-based Hayward and Hopper in the airline’s Mint premium cabin.

Designed by Hayward and Hopper’s Marin Hopper (daughter of Hollywood legends Dennis Hopper and Brooke Hayward), the kits were inspired by Hopper’s personal style and extensive family archives and aim to offer passengers a chic, comforting and classic amenity kit.

The Hayward kit, for female customers, is made from signature Hayward denim and includes a delicate brass zipper, designed by her legendary grandfather, Leland Hayward. The Hopper kit, designed for men, is fabricated in a natural cotton canvas with an artisanal feel.

The kits include all personal care products made in the United States and hand-picked by Hayward and Hopper. Each kit also comes with a matching eye mask as well as screen cloths illustrated with photographs taken by Hollywood legend Dennis Hopper and provided by the Hopper Art Trust archives.

Garuda’s celebrity connections

November 1, 2016

Garuda Indonesia will launch a new three-class onboard menu in January in collaboration with Alpha LSG in London.

Overseen by the airline’s vp of inflight service, Vindex Tengker, the new menu combines European and Indonesia flavours. First passengers will be offered five courses, starting with caviar served with shrimp crackers, while in Business there will be three courses and amuse bouche.

Classic inclusions are Rendung beef (caramalised beef with coriander and chilli); Indonesian salads and soups including oxtail (an Indonesia favourite) and a meatball soup which is a classic Indonesian comfort broth. The choices will be changed every four months but there will also be four chef specials through the year, from well known Indonesian chefs to add further variety.

Tengker said: “Too much heat and spice isn’t comfortable on a flight and really it is flavour that counts most rather than spice. We have adapted traditional recipes to suit a wider palate and are pleased to note growing numbers of passenger do request the Indonesian options.”

The airline has also developed its menu card to reflect Indonesian culture and plans to include details of the products’ backstory in these.

Vindex, a household name in Indonesia as a founding judge on Masterchef Indonesia.

The menu will be available on the non-stop London Heathrow to Jakarta flight from January 2017.

Etihad adds city style

November 1, 2016

Etihad Airways has introduced new destination-inspired Business amenity kits with designs based on iconic cities on its network.

The range builds on the airline’s partnership with LUXE City Guides, created by Buzz, and London-based skincare and grooming brand Scaramouche + Fandango.

The five new cities added are New York, São Paulo, Rome, Melbourne, and Bangkok, while the existing Abu Dhabi kit has been refreshed with a new design and a fully updated city guide. The designs were specially created for Etihad Airways by LUXE City Guides. Each kit features a specially created city guide, showcasing a selection of each destination’s best hotels, restaurants, spas, bars, boutiques, and shopping, as well as services, specialists and personal tour guides.

The designs are inspired by the architectural features of the respective cities. The Abu Dhabi kit is inspired by the intricate mosaics of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and New York by the city’s grid-like streets, avenues and iconic yellow taxis. The Colosseum and ancient stone architecture influence the Rome kit; Bangkok reflects the city’s decorative temples; the Melbourne kit takes its cue from the city’s 19th century buildings, the Yarra river and coastline; and the São Paulo kit reflects the commercial capital’s iconic pavement pattern and the national colours of Brazil.

The Scaramouche + Fandango inclusions include a facial moisturiser enriched with vitamin E and a honey and shea butter lip balm. There are also socks, eye mask, dental pack and earplugs.


Ethiopian opens new kitchen

November 1, 2016

Africa’s largest airline, Ethiopian Airlines, has officially opened its newly built, state of the art inflight catering facility in Addis Ababa.

The new G+1 facility covers a total area of 11,500m2, and includes a food processing area fully-equipped with high-tech cooking and bakery equipment, large capacity dishwashing and heavy-duty ice-cube machines, a hot kitchen, storage units, cold rooms, stores, flow wrapping, loading bays, high lift trucks and vans, varieties of cooling facilities and dedicated Halal kitchen.

Group ceo, Tewolde GebreMariam, said: “This modern facility will significantly enhance our capacity to offer a wide variety menu of meal services to our customers  from the traditional staple injera to a selection of world cuisines: Chinese, Indian, Ottoman, Italian, Halal and many more.”

Ethiopian Catering currently provides inflight catering services for more than 240 Ethiopian daily departing flights, VIP and charter flights, and GebreMariam. It will now become the most competitive and leading inflight caterer in Africa.

The unit is strictly guided by Hazard Analysis and Critical Control points (HACCP), policies and procedures, and will increase the operation’s capacity to more than 100,000 meals per day, compared to the previous 36,000 daily volume.

BA partners with Liberty

November 1, 2016

British brand Liberty London has created an exclusive range of washbags for customers flying in First with British Airways.

The new Liberty London First washbags will appear onboard from January 7, 2017 and feature prints from Liberty London’s vast textiles archive, updated for today’s modern traveller and to reflect British Airways colours and branding.Throughout the year further print designs will be added to the collection.

Troy Warfield, British Airways’ director of customer experience, expects the washbags to become collector’s items in their own right.

The women’s washbag features ‘Christelle’, an eye-catching oriental inspired floral print, and comes with a convenient wristlet.The men’s washbag features a black embossed textured exterior, with ‘Felix Raison’ paisley motif printed lining.

Initially the new Liberty London wash bags will be introduced on British Airways’ A380 Heathrow to Los Angeles route and then they will be offered to customers flying in First on the rest of the airline’s worldwide network.

Air Seychelles partners Galileo onboard

November 1, 2016

Air Seychelles has launched new Business and Economy kits, and a revamped fun pack for kids.

The new kits are the result of a collaboration with Galileo Products and have been designed to reflect the ‘flair and joie de vivre’ of the Seychelles culture.

The new Business kits contains a dental pack, eye mask, socks, earplugs and premium skincare items from Scaramouche + Fandango, a British brand chosen for its luxurious products – a honey lip balm and a moisturising hydrator – presented in a versatile neoprene bag that doubles as an iPad mini case and can be used post-flight.

A new Economy kit, comprises earplugs, an Air Seychelles branded eye mask, dental kit and socks presented in a soft red drawstring bag that can be reused for storing sunglasses.

The newly-designed kids pack features an Air Seychelles mascot in a book filled with fun games and activities, as well as wax crayons and a puzzle. They are packed in a large, water-resistant drawstring bag that is a useful beach companion.

Roy Kinnear, ceo of Air Seychelles, said: “The new kits have been designed to reflect our vibrant creole spirit, which underlies everything we do at the airline, and are tailored specifically for the requirements of our guests, from business travellers to families flying with small children.

“As an environmentally-conscious airline, we wanted to make sure that these kits are reusable, which is why they double-up as holiday items such as beach bags for kids and sunglass pouches.

Air Astana upgrade for kids

November 1, 2016

AK-Service has launched new amenity kits for child passengers flying with Air Astana.

The vivid kits are especially developed for two age groups. Children aged three to six will get a book-shaped bag, designed under license, themed around The Little Prince with illustrations painted by its author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. Contents include an activity book, games, a colourful scarf and a do-it-yourself airplane model.

The amenity kits for older children, aged seven to 12, has been created by AK-Service in collaboration with National Geographic Kids. The activity book features lots of interesting facts about our planet, plus games and a toy compass designed to excite young travellers. They will also receive a neck warmer and a bright yellow-and-black wallet with Air Astana and National Geographic Kids logos.

Qantas reveals its Dreamliner looks

November 1, 2016

Qantas has unveiled what customers onboard its flagship 787-9 Dreamliner can expect when the aircraft arrives in a year’s time.

The Qantas Dreamliner will seat 236 passengers across Business, Premium Economy and Economy cabins in a layout that has been designed to maximise comfort for the longer distances the 787-9 is expected to fly.

The Business Suite is an evolved version of the seat recently installed on the airline’s Airbus A330 fleet, made more flexible on the 787 with the ability to adjust the divider between each seat. The suites have a fully-flat bed and are laid out in a 1-2-1 configuration so each suite has direct aisle access as well as the ability to stay reclined during take-off and landing.

Economy passengers will have an extra inch of seat pitch compared with the national carrier’s A380 – and an all-new seat. It features a new personal device holder and USB ports; more storage areas; a seat-back mood light designed to minimise disturbance for other passengers; and a high-definition entertainment touchscreen that is five per cent larger. The seats also feature an updated version of the ‘footnet’ first introduced on the A380, designed to cradle the legs during sleep.

Qantas Group ceo, Alan Joyce, says the interiors have been carefully designed with longer routes and changing passenger preferences in mind. “We’re planning to make the most of the 787’s amazing range, so we’ve designed the cabin to give Qantas passengers a better experience on long haul flights.Many of the cabin design elements reflect what our customers have told us. Personal storage rates really highly, so we’ve created extra space in Economy for customers to store their personal devices and water bottles. We’re also redesigning the inflight experience for the Dreamliner, from rethinking our menus to making better use of the self-service bars during different phases of flight.”

The Dreamliner’s Premium Economy cabin will be unveiled in early 2017.

Delta extends Westin connections

November 1, 2016

Delta Air Lines has added a newly-designed Westin Heavenly inflight blanket to its premium collection of amenities for the First passengers.

This is an extension of the airline’s existing partnership with Westin Hotels & Resorts, part of Marriott International, Inc.

Based on research and feedback collected directly from customers, Delta’s inflight service and brand team together with Westin’s brand team developed the Westin Heavenly inflight blanket, which is inspired by signature design elements of the iconic Westin Heavenly Bed. The muted grey hue blanket exudes aim to simultaneously pay tribute to the two brands.

Delta’s main cabin blankets have also been upgraded, featuring woven fabric in a sensory blue hue. Each blanket has been designed with durable long-lasting materials.
The Westin Heavenly In-Flight Blanket launch is a part of a larger, ongoing partnership between the well-being brand and Delta to improve the inflight sleep experience.

Customers in select cabins currently enjoy Westin Heavenly In-Flight Bedding – the coveted, luxurious white comforters and hypoallergenic pillows – along with Delta-branded sleepwear, noise-cancelling headsets and TUMI amenity kits featuring Kiehl’s Since 1851 products.

Buddy’s buys Arden Kitchens

November 1, 2016

Buddy’s Kitchen, Inc. has acquired the former Arden Kitchens frozen food facility in Lakeville, Minnesota.

“We’re growing rapidly and need the extra space to accommodate that growth,” said Dave Smith, ceo of Buddy’s Kitchen. The acquired facility is 92,000sqft and sits on 16 acres.

Best known as a producer of custom gourmet breakfast products for airline and convenience foodservice, Buddy’s has more recently added capabilities to produce gluten-free and organic products, which are in high demand from both existing and new customers.

Founded in 1974, Buddy’s Kitchen currently operates a 65,000sqft leased facility in Burnsville, Minnesota. “We have almost eight years left on the Burnsville lease and plan to operate both facilities for the foreseeable future,” Smith added.

Buddy’s Kitchen manufactures custom frozen food for specialty food service operators. It currently employs over 300 people at its Burnsville plant. It expects to add up to 150 more when it opens the Lakeville facility in early 2017, after extensive renovations.

“We serve a handful of very food-forward customers who appreciate our agile innovation and flexible manufacturing processes,” said Smith. “Those customers are growing rapidly today.”

New brands in Etihad First

October 25, 2016

Etihad Airways has a new amenity kit for First, designed in partnership with two leading fashion and beauty brands: Christian Lacroix and Hungarian skincare company Omorovicza.

The new bags partnership, facilitated by Buzz, will be introduced on the airline’s Airbus A380 flights between Abu Dhabi and London, New York, Sydney, Melbourne and Mumbai, and then fleet-wide in early 2017.

The male and female embossed bags come in two colours: plum for women and grey for men. A second phase will see new kits in burgundy for women and black for men.

There are two varieties for each sex: a wash bag and convertible flat case for men, and debossed fold-over bags for women which double as a clutch bag. The men’s bag can be used buttoned down as a wash bag or, when opened flat, as storage for tablet devices such as iPads.

The bags contain four anti-ageing and rejuvenating items by Omorovicza, hand-picked from the brand’s ‘Gold’ collection. The anti-inflammatory gold in the luxurious creams, serums, oils and scrubs heals micro-damage and strengthens mature skin.

The inflight essential products include a lip balm; a facial moisturiser with cooling gel-cream that absorbs instantly and provides long-lasting hydration; a nourishing, lightly-scented hand treatment; and a refreshing cleansing wipe.

Four Omorovicza items will be available in the washrooms: a Queen of Hungary face mist: a hydrating and energising mist that refreshes the skin and stimulates the senses; a fragrant and refreshing face and hand wash to cleanse and hydrate the skin without stripping it of its natural oils; and a nourishing, lightly-scented hand lotion.

Other comfort items included are ear plugs, a comb, a care pack (consisting of cotton pads, ear buds and an emery board), a dental pack, a sleep pack (with comfortable socks and eyeshades), and a relax pack (with pillow mist and pulse point oil). The offering for men also includes a shaving kit.

American partners Michelin Brit

October 25, 2016

American Airlines has partnered with British Michelin-star chef, author, television personality and restaurateur, Mark Sargeant, to design an exclusive menu for Flagship First Class passengers travelling from London to the US.

The à la carte menu now onboard features dishes personally designed by Mark using fresh ingredients and innovative flavour combinations, and is available on flights from Heathrow to Chicago O’Hare; Los Angeles; New York John F Kennedy; Miami and Dallas/ Fort Worth.

Menu highlights include ‘poached native lobster’, and ‘roasted duck with hoisin barbecue sauce’ to start, followed by ‘slow-cooked West Country pork belly with fennel seed and white bean cassoulet’, or ‘barbecue short rib of Angus beef with sweet potato champ and red cabbage slaw’ for the main course. For dessert, a ‘warm spiced Victoria plum crumble with English custard or vanilla ice cream’ offers a nostalgic seasonal treat.

Wine-pairings to complement Mark’s dishes include white and red wines from France, Chile, Australia and California, as well as French champagne, a Spanish sherry and a Portuguese desert wine, each bottle has been carefully-chosen to elevate the dining experience.

On US to Europe services, award-winning US chef, author, television personality and philanthropist, Maneet Chauhan, has lent her expertise to the menu choices with a globally-inspired à la carte menu for routes to Milan, Barcelona, Zürich, Amsterdam and Paris. A selection of main courses designed by Maneet will also be available on outbound flights from the US to Latin America in First and Business.

Iberia launches Premium Economy

October 25, 2016

Iberia has unveiled a Premium Economy cabin that will be available on 37 of its long-haul aircraft from summer 2017.

The new cabin will be installed on eight Airbus A330s-300s, 13 A340-600s and on 16 new A350-900s to be delivered in 2018.

The seat will be 19 inches wide and have a 37-inch pitch. They will recline 40% more than seats in the economy cabin and feature adjustable foot and headrests, noise-cancelling earphones and an exclusive amenity kit.

Passengers will also have full access to the in-flight entertainment programme via 13-inch display screens. Additionally, Premium Economy passengers will enjoy priority boarding and disembarkation, extra baggage allowance and upgraded dining options.

“Iberia is the sole airline that will offer this intermediate seating class on direct flights between Spain and Latin America, which should strengthen our leadership of this market,” says Iberia’s chief commercial director, Marco Sansavini.

The first aircraft to be equipped with the new cabin will be used next summer on routes between Madrid and Buenos Aires, Bogota, Lima and Chicago.

Flying Food’s hat-trick

October 25, 2016

Flying Food Group (FFG) has earned a trio of global supplier awards from Virgin Atlantic for 2016.

Virgin Atlantic presented FFG awards for its overall cabin performance in Upper Class; for its innovative culinary team and to recognise account manager Rex Nichols at JFK.

There is a thriving connection between VS and FFG, according to Jim Ball, FFG vp of sales & service, who said that there is a great relationship between the two companies which collaborate at EWR and IAD on daily flights to Heathrow; JFK on five flights daily flight to Heathrow; at MIA on 7-14 flights weekly flights to Heathrow and at MCO on 3-5 flights daily to Gatwick and other airports.

The awards were presented at the Virgin Atlantic Global Catering Awards event in the UK. FFG Executive Chef Henri Alcade, FFG VP Research & Development, led the culinary and production teams attending the awards event.

Pictured (l-r) are: Jacky Toh—Corporate Executive Chef; Brenda Sanchez—MCO Account Mgr; Chef Henri Alcade, vp R&DP; Rex Nichols, JFK director of operations; Jing Jing Liu, specs/pricing analyst; Paul Freitas, EWR customer service manager; and Claude Berre, MIA executive chef.

Healthier options get onboard

October 25, 2016

Absolute Taste and The Aviation Nutritionist have joined forces to launch a range of inflight meals designed to offer passengers a nutritionally balanced and health enhancing onboard dining experience.

Responding to the ever-increasing interest in cleaner eating and the growing number of passengers concerned over the nutritional value of each meal, each dish is designed to promote easy digestion, encourage the ability to detoxify, improve depleted energy levels whilst travelling and aid inflight comfort and sleep.

The nutrition-conscious meals will debut on ConnectJets’ private jets out of London City Airport.

En Route goes pink for Cancer

October 25, 2016

En Route is stepping up its support for Breast Cancer Care by raising awareness of the disease amongst passengers and crew through pink-themed products on Emirates.

Crew will be offered Stoats’ Cranberry and Raspberry Porridge, which is a nutritious blend of Scottish oats that turns pink when the cranberries and raspberries are stirred in, topped with a sprinkle of brown sugar.

Passengers will also be offered one of two pink snacks: Biscottea Strawberry Shortbread, made with natural ingredients, or Organic Chocolate Coated Berries, an melange of dried strawberries and blueberries coated in white chocolate, dried strawberries dipped in milk chocolate and dried raspberries covered in dark chocolate.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide, with 1 in 8 being diagnosed in their lifetime. Men can also develop the disease, with 1 in 870 developing breast cancer. Breast Cancer Care is the only specialist UK-wide charity providing care, support and information for those affected by breast cancer.

This is the third year running, the company has supported Breast Cancer Care and sees it more than doubling its donation to £25,000.

The new selection on Emirates flights is packaged with the slogan “The Power of Pink”.

Qatar partners with Giorgio Armani

October 17, 2016

Qatar Airways has launched a newly-designed range of luxurious Giorgio Armani fragrances and beauty amenity kits for First passengers on selected A380 flights.

The amenity kits are designed in black, the signature colour of Giorgio Armani, and feature golden accents reflecting the latest Giorgio Armani fall/winter 2016-2017 collection.

Women will receive a kit that doubles as make-up or jewellery bag post-flight, while men will receive a smart travel bag made with a ribbed fabric that reflects the latest trends in male style and luxury.

The female kits include moisturiser, eye makeup remover and Giorgio Armani Crema Nera Extrema; while male kits finclude a shampoo, lotion and Armani Men Perfect Master Serum.Both amenity kits include a comfort bag consisting of lip balm, socks, eyeshades and ear plugs while the ladies kit also includes a hair brush.

The new range of Giorgio Armani Fragrances and Beauty amenity kits are available exclusively on overnight services on all First Class long-haul and ultra-long-haul flights on the airline’s Airbus A380. Qatar Airways’ Airbus A380 operates on select services to Paris, London, Bangkok, Guangzhou in China, and now on the daily A380 service to Sydney, Australia.

Icelandair crews buddy up

October 17, 2016

Icelandair is taking onboard hospitality off the aircraft with the reintroduction of its Stopover Buddy service connecting passengers with members of the airline’s team for personalised insights while on a stopover.

All passengers on a transatlantic stopover can now request a free Buddy and are matched according to their requests and interests. Buddies will be on hand to act as a host in Iceland and offer their personalised local expertise.

For example, co-pilot, Sverrir’s brother is in Icelandic band, Of Monsters and Men and could arrange an exclusive meet at Iceland Airwaves festival. Flight attendant Hlíf is related to the captain of the women’s national football team and could take a passenger to watch her at a local game. Captain Bjorn is a keen adventurer and could help a visitor plan the ultimate proposal in one of Iceland’s best secret beauty spots.

The Stopover Buddy service was launched in response to global research highlighting people want to experience local culture and unique adventures over anything else whilst on holiday. Over half (51%) of the respondents stated they are keen to mix with locals when abroad to have an authentic local experience and three quarters admitted to feeling embarrassed for looking like a tourist.

The Buddies are available for any Icelandair transatlantic passengers to enjoy from October 11 2016 to March 31 2017.

VistaJet’s creative cocktails

October 17, 2016

Private aviation operator VistaJet, claims to be raising the onboard bar with the introduction of an innovative cocktail collection created exclusively by Simone Caporale, internationally recognised mixologist.

Simone has reimagined the glamorous cocktails from the 1950s, a golden age of aviation, for a curated cocktail collection using a range of innovative techniques.

“From alcohol ‘clouds’ to molecular tricks, Simone Caporale is the finest mixologist in the world, so we are delighted to bring our clients the ultimate in-flight cocktail experience.” said Nina Flohr, VistaJet’s Creative Director. “Simone has developed new inflight techniques for flavour-balancing and to enhance the travel experience. He has personally trained all of our hostesses to perfect each drink in the collection.”

The inflight menu includes eight original creations such as the 50/50 Manhattan, blended with equal parts scotch whisky and red vermouth with a hint of oak smoke; the Sake Blossom with Nobu sake complimented by organic black cherry and tonka bean; and the Negroni Aperitivo, mellow and slightly bitter.

Singapore chooses Alpha LSG

October 17, 2016

Alpha LSG has been awarded a new contract to cater Singapore Airlines flights out of Manchester, and its existing agreement at London-Heathrow has been extended.

From October 30 Alpha LSG will be catering five flights each week on a new route operating non-stop from Singapore to Manchester and then continuing on to Houston. Under the new arrangement Alpha LSG will also cater five return flights from Houston that will stop over at Manchester on route to Singapore.

The extension to Alpha LSG’s existing contract with Singapore Airlines will see it continue to cater 28 flights each week out of London-Heathrow.

Richard Wood, Alpha LSG Managing Director said: “We are delighted to announce these new agreements with Singapore Airlines. Outside of Singapore, London-Heathrow is one of their largest operations and we are honoured to be entrusted with catering one of Singapore Airline’s flagship routes. Our new contract in Manchester also reflects the strength of our excellent relationship with the airline.”

Alpha LSG currently supplies nearly a million meals each year across Economy, Business and First cabins for passengers travelling on over 1,450 flights on Singapore Airlines services from London-Heathrow.

Delta lies flat

October 17, 2016

Delta is to become the only airline to offer lie-flat seats in the premium cabin between Los Angeles and Washington-Reagan.

The airline will begin daily nonstop service from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) on April 24, 2017 and all flights will be operated using a Boeing 757-200 aircraft with full flat-bed seats in First.

Ranjan Goswami, Delta’s vp sales, west region, says: “We know that for Delta customers in L.A. and D.C. ‘how’ they get there is important. As the only airline to offer full flat-bed seats between these markets, our customers will arrive rested and productive – and it’s that premium distinction in the customer experience that differentiates Delta. We’re pleased our growth and investment on the West Coast has created this opportunity.”

Malaysia adds new wine range

October 10, 2016

Malaysia Airlines has unveiled a new range of wine and champagne to be offered to its First and Business customers travelling between London and Kuala Lumpur.

The new selection will sit alongside the fine dining Chef-on-Call menu, featuring a wide selection of 25 dishes ranging from Malaysian favourites, chef’s recommendations, healthy and light meals.

In Business the offer now includes: Champagne Duval Leroy “Fleur du Champagne” Premier Cru NV; Chateau Doyac 2011, AOC Haut Medoc, Bordeaux; D’Arenberg The Footbolt Shiraz 2013, McLaren Vale; Bodega Piedra Negra Malbec Reserve 2014, Mendoza, Argentina; Wairau River Sauvignon Blanc 2015, Marlborough; Maison Trenel Bourgogne Chardonnay 2014, Burgundy; Pikes “Traditionale” Clare Valley Riesling 2015, South Australia; and Chateau Monteau Raba 2010, AOC Sauternes.

First passengers are offered Champagne Joseph Perrier Cuvee Josephine 2004; Chateau Frombrauge 2012, AOC St-Emilion Grand Cru Classes, Bordeaux; Schubert Wairarapa Syrah 2013, Martinborough; Domaine Chandon de Briailles Pernand Vergelesse 1er cru “les Vergelesses” 2011, Burgundy; Bodega Piedra Negra Malbec Reserve 2014, Mendoza, Argentina; Stonier Lyncroft Vineyards Chardonnay 2013, Victoria; Chateau La Louviere Blanc 2013, AOC Pessac Leognan, Bordeaux; Pikes “Traditionale” Clare Valley Riesling 2015, South Australia; and the Chateau Monteau Raba 2010, AOC Sauternes, Bordeaux dessert wine.

Arved von zur Mühlen, chief commercial officer at Malaysia Airlines said: “At a time when some airlines are reducing the level of food and beverages on-board flights, Malaysia Airlines is choosing to invest in quality products for our customers. We pride ourselves in ensuring our customers have a truly amazing experience, we believe that our new wines and champagnes will further enhance that experience.”

Pre orders for Ukraine

October 10, 2016

Ukraine International Airlines is now offering a pre-order option for onboard meals.

Passengers can use the pre-ordered meal link on the airline’s website, submit information on the flight date and route, and choose the preferred meal options out of an extensive selection of snacks, hot courses, and sets.

In addition to basic menu, passengers are offered vegetarian, kosher, Muslim, and children`s menu. Eventually, UIA plans to enhance the selection of special menus by offering clients Chinese cuisine. Drinks and beverages can be purchased onboard during the flight.

Pre-ordered meals should be booked minimum 50 hours prior to scheduled departure. The option is available for Economy passengers on most medium-haul flights while complimentary meals are still available in Business, and in Economy and Premium Economy on long-haul flights, as well as in Economy Class on UIA scheduled services to Kazakhstan, Iran, and Jordan.

New deals in Bangkok

October 10, 2016

Bangkok Air Catering (BAC) has unveiled new developments and two new contracts with Swiss International Air Lines and Kuwait Airways out of Bangkok.

The company has also expanded its kosher box offering following positive feedback.

Bangkok Air Catering Samui base is now fully operational, and the construction of Bangkok Air Catering Phuket is under way and due to launch around July 2017.

Construction of the Gourmet Primo facility will shortly be under way in Pravej. Gourmet Primo will offer cost-saving solutions for catering, hotel and other businesses, bringing value-added products to the domestic and export markets.

Servair deal with Hainan

October 4, 2016

Servair has been chosen by Chinese airline Hainan Airlines to provide onboard catering for its Paris-Xi’An route for the next three years.

The service, operated by an Airbus A330-200, has a completely new catering offer as part of Hainan Airlines’ ‘exclusive restaurant onboard’ programme. The new menu features signature meals from Mathieu Viannay, chef of La Mère Brazier in Lyon (two stars in the Michelin Guide), developed in collaboration with the Servair chefs.

The offer is part of a deliberate strategy from the Chinese airline to provide a new gastronomic experience onboard its flights. Menus are also signed by Michelin-starred chefs on flights from Paris, Berlin and Brussels.

Michel Emeyriat, ceo of Servair, said: “This new partnership is a source of real pride for us. Hainan Airlines is a prestigious company, with a very high quality offer. For all our teams, assisting them in introducing this new gastronomic offer is both an ambitious challenge and true recognition of our know-how. All our passion is behind this new challenge.”

British Airways deal for Tourvest

October 4, 2016

British Airways has awarded Tourvest Inflight Retail Services the contract to manage its new short-haul food and beverage service.

The new catering service will enable customers to purchase Marks & Spencer Food on the Move options on British Airways’ short-haul and domestic flights from January 2017. It follows extensive customer research and feedback, which found that travellers want more choices that reflect their on-the-go preferences.

Tourvest is working with British Airways and Marks & Spencer in order to design the menu, which will include a number of fresh options as well as ambient products that are easy for customers to eat on the flight or take with them for their onward journey.

Tourvest has also extended its contract to supply and manage the Duty Free service to British Airways worldwide, which it has held since January 2012.

Troy Warfield, British Airways’ director of customer experience, said: “The logistics, delivery and value proposition of both our new short-haul catering option, together with our duty free service are incredibly important to the experience our customers receive. We needed a company capable of dealing with the scale and complexity of our operation, and we believe Tourvest is the perfect option.”

Clive Jones, ceo of Tourvest Inflight Retail Services, said: “We are incredibly proud to be managing such a critical move for British Airways. It’s a real honour for our business to be associated with such British giants as British Airways and Marks & Spencer.”

Both contracts have been awarded following a bid process led by International Airlines Group (IAG), British Airways’ parent company.

New deal for Flying Food Group

October 4, 2016

Flying Food Group IAD is now catering the new Royal Air Maroc (RAM) route between Washington D.C. and Casablanca.

Nicolas Rondeau, FFG executive vice president, airline sales, said FFG is now servicing its the three weekly flights launched September 8 using its cutting-edge IAD facility located less than five miles from Dulles International Airport.

Virgin Trains wins innovation award

October 4, 2016

Virgin Trains has won the ‘Most Innovative Caterer’ award in the Onboard Retail Category at the annual International Rail Catering Group awards.

The award recognised a menu which included dishes such as lemon and herb roasted chicken and a chicken curry developed by chef James Martin who also developed an exclusive range of jams, produced by Yorkshire based The Fruity Kitchen, and a premium Black Pudding served at breakfast in the full-English.

Alison Watson, head of customer experience for Virgin Trains on the east coast said: “We are so pleased to see our menu get the recognition it deserves at the International Rail Catering Group awards. We believe in providing an outstanding service to our customers onboard and working with James Martin to develop this menu has been a key part of this.

“This is another step in Virgin Trains’ journey of improving every element of our customers’ experience when they travel with us. Our new First Class carriages are rolling out on a weekly basis now and our Azuma trains are being prepared to the highest spec in anticipation of future customer needs.”

Read our interview with James Martin here

Google gets onboard

October 4, 2016

Ethiopian Airlines is using a Google “Seat View”to give potential customers a tour around its Cloud 9 Business Class and Economy cabins on its A350-900 XWB.

The tour allows passengers travelling between London Heathrow and Addis Ababa to take a closer look at the seat of their choice before their trip. The feature is expected to be especially helpful to passengers bidding for an upgrade to Cloud 9 Business Class through Ethiopian’s PlusGrade programme.

The virtual tour includes integrated pop-up panels to highlight special cabin features including seat specifications, IFE offerings, and Cloud 9 food and beverage menus. Customers can also book, manage existing reservations or log into their ShebaMiles account after finishing the tour with a single click.

“Ethiopian Airlines has an incredibly modern fleet unrivalled by other African carriers, so we felt we needed an equally modern way of showcasing our product for both the direct consumers and travel trade”- says Renata De Sousa, the UK Sales and Marketing representative.

The airline plans to add its new B787-800 Dreamliner onto Google Street View in the coming weeks.

Hot options on JAL

October 4, 2016

Japan Airlines (JAL) has responded to growing demand for hot dining options in its airport lounges outside Japan by adding hot offerings in Frankfurt, Honolulu and San Francisco.

The airline will now serve yaki-onigiri vhazuke (grilled rice ball dipped in soup stock) at its Sakura Lounge at Honolulu International Airport with further hot options at the its First and Sakura Lounges in Frankfurt and San Francisco International Airports starting from October 2016.

Frankfurt travellers will get a new chicken curry dish based on a special recipe that includes Japanese ramen (noodles) from Frankfurt-based restaurant MUKU with a second MUKU ramen dish to follow soon.
San Franciso passengers will also be served the yaki-onigiri chazuke and Chikuzen-ni (simmered root vegetables with chicken) in addition to the Futomaki sushi (sushi roll) currently served.

Honolulu passengers will be offered a special yaki-onigiri chazuke (grilled rice ball in umami soup).The grilled rice ball is made with California Koshihikari rice and flavoured with Hawaiian sea salt.

KLM extends award miles options

October 4, 2016

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Flying Blue members can now use their award miles to pay for tax-free items onboard.

The expansion of the Flying Blue programme provides new ways to spend award miles. The programme was expanded last year to include earning and spending miles earned with Transavia.

Flying Blue members can already use their award miles to buy tax-free articles in the web shop, Shop@KLM, and pay for flights, extra baggage or legroom, hotel rooms, or car hire. And now they can redeem them onboard as well. Flying Blue members can collect award miles, for instance, by booking flights with KLM, Air France, or other airline partners.

CrossCountry rail ups its offer

October 4, 2016

UK train operator CrossCountry has re-launched its onboard pre-order menu to include new offerings and a range of gluten free and vegetarian options.

A new wine selection has also been introduced to complement each dish. Richard Cross, catering buyer at CrossCountry. “Our new pre-order menu caters for a range of lifestyles and palates; the Concha Y Toro Chardonnay, for example, provides the perfect accompaniment to our poached salmon supreme. It is the ultimate indulgence for a warm up to a weekend getaway or a delicious finish to a long day at work.”

The new pre-order menu will be available on selected routes from Edinburgh to Plymouth, and Manchester to Bournemouth, covering major cities and towns such as York, Birmingham and Oxford – ideal for those who are travelling long distance.

The pre-order service also offers an exclusive meal deal option; two main meals, two desserts and a bottle of wine from CrossCountry’s Pier 42 range for just £25

Richard Cross added: “From our new vegetable tagine to our gluten-free salted caramel chocolate pot, there is something for everyone.”