Industry news

Strawberries, cream and tennis at 40,000 feet

July 17, 2019

Emirates took a British summertime classic to new heights this weekend when it served strawberries and cream alongside a live stream of the Wimbledon Championships 2019 at 40,000 feet.

The airline made the arrangements to ensure passengers did not miss out on the action of the weekend’s finals streamed live from the grass courts of South West London.

First and Business customers were able to enjoy the Grand Slam tournament whilst enjoying seasonal strawberries, as well as a deconstructed mille-feuille with poached strawberries, white chocolate cream, pastry crisps and basil tuille. The classic British summer dessert Eton Mess and strawberry éclairs were also served.

In the coming weeks Emirates flights with Live TV will screen other major sporting events such as golf at The Open (July 14-21), more tennis at the US Open (August 26-September 8) and the new Premier League season (from August 10) – all on the dedicated in-flight sports channel, Sport 24. This includes flights to and from London Heathrow, London Gatwick, London Stansted, Manchester, Newcastle and Birmingham.

Emirates currently has 175 aircraft equipped with Live TV including all Boeing 777s and select Airbus 380s.

United extends inflight snack offering

July 17, 2019

United Airlines’ customers will now get to choose between three complimentary inflight snack items in Economy on all domestic flights, regardless of departure time. Customers can now choose between Byrd’s Maple Wafers, pretzels and the established favourite, stroopwafel.

United previously rotated the complimentary inflight snack offering on flights that departed prior to 9:45 a.m. Now the stroopwafel and pretzels will be available at any time of day and the airline will rotate the third selection to ensure more variety onboard.

“Since we reintroduced free snacks a few years ago, our customers have come to look forward to enjoying their personal favourites onboard – whether it be the stroopwafel, our exclusive maple wafers or the classic pretzels,” said Toby Enqvist, United’s chief customer officer. “Now we’re going a step further and when it comes to snacks, every customer wins since our entire inflight snack line-up is available to choose from no matter the time of day.”

Flying Food Group caters new Ethiopian route

July 17, 2019

Flying Food Group’s New York facility (JFK) is now catering Ethiopian Airlines’ new route of three weekly flights to Abidjan and Addis Ababa. Flying Food Group also caters Ethiopian at Chicago, Newark and Washington, D.C.

The airline has been a Flying Food Group customer since 2015. Nicolas Rondeau, Flying Food executive vice president of airline sales commented it affirms the high quality of catering services and products being offered when an existing customer adds new catering gates.

ANA launches new cabins

July 17, 2019

All Nippon Airways (ANA), Japan’s largest airline, has collaborated with architect Kengo Kuma and leading British designers Acumen to roll out a total of 12 completely redesigned Boeing 777-300ER aircraft. The first redesigned aircraft will serve the Tokyo/Haneda-London route from August 2, 2019.

At the heart of ANA’s new product investment is a new seat design for Business called THE Room. Inspired by modern, multifunctional Japanese living spaces, THE Room offers flexible doors for personal privacy that can also be adjusted to share the space with fellow travellers.

Also among the most noticeable changes are the all-new First seats called THE Suite. New features include the addition of privacy-enhancing doors as well as the world’s first 4K personal monitor on a commercial airliner. THE Suite also has a movable partition as well as a universal PC and USB port.

Premium Economy and Economy upholstery has been redesigned with traditional prints. Passengers will also enjoy an enhanced flight experience thanks to improved touch screen monitors and adjustable headrests.

Both First and Business seats will feature new lights made by Panasonic, which have been custom-designed specifically for ANA. Inspired by natural sunrise, the lights have been crafted to improve comfort and convenience during sleeping, reading and dining.

Kuwait Airways adds ‘Super Diamond’ seats

July 17, 2019

Kuwait Airways’ A330-800neo Business passengers will soon benefit from Super Diamond Business seats and the Essence galley inserts from Collins Aerospace Systems.

The airline will install 32 individual passenger seats per aircraft in a 1-2-1 configuration on each of its eight A330-800neo aircraft that will enter into service in 2020.

Passengers on these flights will experience all-aisle access, a 78-inch fully-flat seat with Crystalflex diaphragm comfort system, increased stowage, and gate-to-gate in-flight entertainment solutions.

The new Collins Aerospace’s full suite of Essence galley inserts will include steam ovens and espresso machines plus a full suite of galley-chilling equipment. The inserts are light weight and easy to use, and designed to support the highest quality inflight food and beverage.

“Accommodating passengers in today’s competitive airspace means offering highly distinctive experiences through the seat they sit in, the quality of food and beverage service along with other amenities offered throughout a flight,” said Alastair Hamilton, vice president, sales & marketing, interiors for Collins Aerospace.

Tapas and sherry on Iberia

July 10, 2019

Business passengers on Iberia are now served chilled sherry with ‘tapas’ of cold cuts, cured sausage, and the best regional cheeses.

Meat tapas will feature salchichon and fuet (peppery pork salamis), spicy chorizo pork sausage, lomo (cured pork loin), and cecina (thin salt beef slices). The cheese selection includes the ever-popular Manchego, and the distinctive Basque Idiazábal, the Minorcan Mahón and the Canary Island Majorero. The offering will be different on outbound and inbound Madrid flights.

In summer, Iberia carries its most international passengers, and this year wants to use the opportunity to familiarise them with Spanish gastronomy.

Long-haul Business passengers can also enjoy a larger offering of Spanish specialities in the lunch and dinner service. For starters, they can choose gazpacho or salmorejo (tomato-based cold soups) served with exotic fresh salads including apple and mango, or more traditional tuna and tomato.

Main dishes include marinated chicken, cured acorn-fed pork cheeks, veal sirloin, and other meat and fish dishes garnished with vegetables such as salted mushrooms, braised potatoes with onion and peppers, or string beans. Also available is the salmon with pumpkin, beets, and spinach.

Snack service for Business passengers on long-haul includes the classic tortilla española (a robust omelette made with parboiled potatoes and onions), served with green asparagus, candied artichokes, and grilled tomatoes. Other options include a tuna turnover or pie with a tomato salad.

To accompany these dishes Iberia serves its selection of Spanish wines from the Rioja, Ribera del Duero, and Rueda regions, including some “boutique” artisanal vintages.

Aeromexico’s new look

July 10, 2019

Aeromexico has collaborated with renowned local designer Lorena Saravia to give its flight attendants’ uniforms a fresh look. The new creations will be onboard for the next five years.

Saravia’s work reflects the personality of a strong woman with a signature style. Listening to the needs of Aeromexico flight attendants, the designer created comfortable pieces that allow them to perform their duties with elegance, mixing haute couture with fast fashion.

The new uniform is navy blue with black highlighting a line on the back that is reminiscent of a tuxedo and a hallmark of the designer’s pieces. Shoes for all crew members are black, and the ladies will no longer wear a hat as with the former uniform.

The move is part of Aeromexico on-going commitment to improving working conditions in the aviation industry. With an average of 600 flights daily, Aeromexico has more than 2,900 flight attendants in its workforce.

Uniforms take a bow

July 10, 2019

The Eurostar uniform created by Jermyn Street Design has been recognised in the ‘Most Iconic Uniform of the Decade’ category at the Professional Clothing Awards in London.

The uniform was the first runner-up for the headline Award, which celebrated the most-loved and most-influential designs from the last ten years.

Susanne Malim, founder and creative director of Jermyn Street Design, comments: “Our entire team is thrilled to have our Eurostar uniform recognised by this amazing award. It was and continues to be a team effort to keep the Eurostar staff looking amazing, so seeing them wearing the clothes with such pride is a huge reward in itself.”

JSD was also the winner of one of the most highly competitive and sought-after awards for the Best Managed Contract for its Jet2 uniform. JSD re-engineered the uniform for Jet2’s pilots and cabin crew, ground ops staff, engineers and holiday reps.

Delta ready to reinvent

July 10, 2019

Free welcome cocktails, a hot towel service, mix-and-match options for premium appetizers and larger entrees are just a few of the ways Delta will be differentiating its international Main Cabin service from November.

“This is about investing in every single customer who chooses Delta, no matter where they sit on the plane,” said Allison Ausband, Delta’s senior vice president – in-flight service. “The thoughtful touches we’re investing in throughout the new Main Cabin experience were designed by flight attendants with one goal in mind – delivering an exceptional experience that our customers will rave about and one that our team, the best in the business, is proud to deliver.”

The reinvented service has been tested on the more than 700 flights between Portland and Tokyo-NRT over the past year and has received positive customer feedback. It has been adapted in response to comments through the year drawing on rigorous reviews of nearly 14,000 hours of flight time; information from over 1,800 customer surveys; robust crew feedback; and input from a design team made up of 24 flight attendants.

In addition, Delta has provided specialised training to its team of more than 3,000 pursers. Responsible for the customer experience from nose to tail, the purser role at Delta has been elevated to include pre-flight introductions in the gate house and personal greetings at the boarding door.

More international onboard enhancements are coming soon…

Michelin-star menu for Lufthansa’s young passengers

July 10, 2019

Rice pudding mouse, dragon feet and hen house – these and other imaginative dishes are now available to young passengers onboard all Lufthansa long-haul flights as well as long European flights from Germany.

Created by chef Alexander Herrmann, the offerings were presented to an international children’s jury of 13 earlier this year. The children, aged between four and nine, tasted a large number of different meals prepared by LSG’s chefs and were asked to choose their favourite dishes. The dragon feet (poultry sausages served with sauerkraut and mashed potatoes) and the rice pudding mouse (a composition of creamed rice pudding and raspberries) proved to be the most popular.

The new children’s menus is free of charge when ordered in advance for all Lufthansa long-haul flights and for some long European flights. They are offered for children under the aged 12 and need to be pre-ordered up to 24 hours before departure.

Marfo and Fleury Michon merge

July 3, 2019

Fleury Michon has announce the acquisition of the Marfo Food Group.

Marfo will merge with Fleury Michon America and operate under its subsidiary Fleury Michon Airline Catering International.

The merger will enable both companies to pursue their collective strategy to offer a uniform and global product to current and future customers, and is the first step in a joint strategic plan to serve customers worldwide, including in the Far East in the near future.

The new company will offer the same quality and consistency on both sides of the Atlantic including to parts of South America.

The companies share the same values with a focus on a superior customer experience, and both recognise the need for a global presence to meet customer demand.

The merged business aims to ensure a high level of product consistency and quality and expects to benefit service through operational efficiencies and shared expertise developed via culinary workshops.

Flybe goes nut-free

July 3, 2019

UK carrier Flybe will no longer carry any peanuts or nut-based products onboard its own-operated flights in a move to further improve the passenger experience for severe allergy sufferers.

Roy Kinnear, Flybe’s chief commercial officer, explains: “We take the issue of nut allergies extremely seriously and, as an additional measure to those already being taken, have now removed all peanuts and nut-based products from our onboard Café Flybe menu. We will also, of course, continue to take the existing preventative measures we have had in place for many years to further reassure those passengers who advise us they are at risk.”

Passengers with a food-related allergy of any type are advised to always check product labels and packaging for specific ingredient information as no public environment can ever be guaranteed 100% ‘nut-free’.

Flybe hopes that, together with its existing precautionary announcements, the additional measure it has taken by being one of the first to remove nut-based snack products in this way will lessen the stress experienced by those worrying about a potential nut-related anaphylaxis reaction when travelling by public transport.

Thai Airways partners with Chef Thierry from Lebua Hotels

July 3, 2019

Thai Airways is serving a classic French menu until August 31 in collaboration with Lebua Hotels and Resorts.

The menu will be served to its Royal First Class passengers on the Bangkok-London route and Royal Silk Class passengers on flights from Bangkok to London, Frankfurt, Munich, Paris and Zurich.

The meals have been designed by Chef Vincent Thierry from Lebua’s three Michelin-starred restaurant in Bangkok. It is a classic French menu with authentic French flavours using the best organic ingredients.

The menu in Royal First class includes lobster tiramisu marinated, tandoori fruits and mascarpone cream, followed by seared duck breast, ginger sauce, potato gnocchi and beetroot puree.

The Royal Silk Class menu starts with caviar scallop and lobster, green jelly and shallot cream followed by chicken roll stuffed with prawn, mushroom and fennel chicken, and prawn sauce, seared tiger prawn, fennel puree and seared fennel.

Some 80% of the ingredients are locally produced and 20% are imported premium raw materials which cannot be found in Thailand.

DFDS launches ‘Field to Ferry’ campaign

July 3, 2019

British ferry operator DFDS has launched a ‘Field to Ferry’ campaign. Following an internal review of its food produce suppliers.

The campaign showcases a handful of UK suppliers to engage and inform passengers where the food served onboard has come from, with a strong focus on provenance, traceability and sustainability.

The move is part of a DFDS strategy to create an onboard ferry dining experience that challenges pre-conceptions of ferry food from bygone years.

Dave Lewis, category manager food and beverage at DFDS, says: “I am incredibly passionate about food and from early in my career as a chef, I understood the importance of good quality ingredients in helping to create the best quality dishes. My job now at DFDS is to source great ingredients to provide our passengers with the best dishes onboard our ships, from the ‘Field to the Ferry’.”

The ‘Field to Ferry’ campaign will focus initially on five of DFDS’s UK producers and suppliers with a passion and commitment to producing high-quality food to the foodservice industry.

The suppliers included are Stokes Sauces, Speciality Breads, McCain/ A L Lee Farming, Marshfield Farm Ice Cream and Reynolds.

Refurbished restaurant takes to seas

July 3, 2019

Regent Seven Seas Cruises has unveiled new culinary opportunities on its Seven Seas Navigator ship following a two-week refurbishment in Brest, France.

Prime 7, the ship’s contemporary American steakhouse, has been completely reimagined with dark blue walls accented with gold leather chairs providing an elegant backdrop for the prime steak and seafood dining.

The welcoming Navigator Lounge has also been refreshed with new furnishings and serves coffee during the day and cocktails around the piano in the afternoon and evenings.

Additional enhancements include a new infra-red barbeque grill at the Pool Grill that extracts smoke, making for a more comfortable outdoor guest dining experience. New air conditioning and water pipes were installed throughout the entire vessel.

Alpha LSG secures new Manchester premises

June 25, 2019

Alpha LSG has pledged its future to Manchester with plans to open a new high-tech bonded warehouse.

The company says the state-of-the-art premises on the ICON Manchester Airport City site will be fully operational by winter 2020, joining its existing Manchester flight catering unit. At 102,500sqft the new unit will be almost double the size of its existing warehousing facility. The new premises will also include 7,500sqft of office space.

“This new building is a significant investment in our future in Manchester and beyond,” said Alex Forbes, Alpha LSG’s chief executive officer. “We see this as an opportunity to launch lots of new improved initiatives across our entire network such as agile working, wellbeing in the workplace and interactive communications to name but a few.”

The building will be BREEAM certified, meaning it meets the latest standards in sustainable development. Alpha LSG is also using the police initiative ‘Secure by Design’ as the blueprint for robust security. All of the processes and designs used will be benchmarked to the initiative, which improves the security of buildings and their immediate surroundings to provide safe places to live, work and visit.

Emirates adds zing to summer

June 25, 2019

Emirates is bringing the flavours of summer to its menus with the addition of seasonal fruits on selected routes.

Over the next two months the airline will roll out special offerings incorporating flavours from the summer harvest – from strawberries and cream paired in an Eton Mess dessert for UK routes to Alphonso mangoes in kheer, and layered cakes for flights to India.

First and Business customers will be offered the Eton Mess from July. Strawberry eclairs, a strawberry cream delice and a deconstructed mille-feuille with poached strawberries, white chocolate cream, pastry crisps and basil tulle, will also be served.

The Alphonso mango layer cake goes onboard at the same time, while Economy customers get the Alfonso mango and sago kheer. The special month-long menu offering will see almost six tonnes of Alphonso mangoes and mango puree sourced from India.

First and Business passengers travelling to and from Italy in August can look forward to an appetizer of the season’s heirloom tomatoes paired with burrata, an Italian cheese made from mozzarella and cream.

In the last month, the airline also introduced dishes featuring white asparagus on flights to Germany, Amsterdam and France, aligning with the European harvest season. Hanami-inspired menus were launched on flights to Japan during the cherry blossom season in April.

The seasonal dishes follow previous themed menus for global events such as Chinese New Year, Ramadan and Easter.

Bühner serves up innovation for LSG Group

June 25, 2019

Michelin-starred German chef Thomas Bühner has become the latest brand ambassador for the LSG Group.

The appointment expands the company’s Global Culinary Leadership Team network, which also includes two other well-known German chefs, Harald Wohlfahrt and Sven Elverfeld.

Bühner has more than 30 years of experience in high gastronomy. He ran the la vie restaurant in Osnabrück from 2006 to 2018 and was awarded three Michelin stars and 19 points in the Gault&Millau restaurant guide and now travels the world as a consultant, keynote speaker and guest chef.

As brand ambassador for the LSG Group, he will take a close look at the range and quality of the company’s culinary offering and make improvement suggestions.

“I am looking forward to an exciting exchange of culinary experiences,” he said. “Enriching the gastronomic experience on board is an attractive and complex task. I am proud to be able to contribute with my experience as a brand ambassador and would like to thank everyone for the trust they have placed in me.”

Flying Food Group catering new LOT route

June 25, 2019

Flying Food Group has strengthened its alliance with LOT Polish Airlines, taking on the catering for the carrier’s five weekly flights to Warsaw from Miami.

FFG has worked with LOT since 1990 and already serves its operations out of Chicago, Los Angeles, Newark and New York.

APOT hits the road

June 19, 2019

APOT.Asia’s annual gathering has been on the move this week as it combined education and networking in Shanghai, China.

Based at the Inter Continental Expo Hotel, the non-profit association’s annual event this year took a different format with delegates boarding a dedicated APOT bus for a range of city tours, educational visits and time networking with colleagues and sampling regional street food.

The programme included a gala dinner; golf, a Chinese tea ceremony, and cultural river cruise. APOT is positioned as the region’s leading representative group for professionals in the airline hospitality, services and supply industry. It also aims to promote regional tourism and destinations through its members and their influence.

LSG Sky Chefs opens in Kenya

June 19, 2019

LSG Sky Chefs has opened a new inflight-catering facility at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) in Nairobi, Kenya.

LSG Sky Chefs Kenya Ltd, is managed in partnership with shareholders Apatana Investment Ltd and Continental Services Ltd and includes a fully-equipped production area of around 1,200 square metres. It has been built to be a 100% fully-certified halal customer service centre.

“Our two countries, Kenya and Germany, have been working together in close collaboration for more than 50 years in terms of political, economic and cultural exchanges,” said Erdmann Rauer, CEO of the LSG Group, during the official opening. “It is, therefore, natural that we looked into the opportunity to establish a presence in Kenya.”

“It has been LSG’s long-standing tradition and understanding of entrepreneurship to create win-win situations by joining forces with partners who have a good reputation and a strong network in their home market,” added Alfred Rigler, head of the company’s emerging markets business region. “That is why we are so pleased to have found the right partners, and worked together to form a joint venture that is of mutual benefit.”

Ukraine’s new retail partner

June 19, 2019

Ukraine International Airlines has entered into a strategic partnership with duty free retailer Duty Free Americas and Ukrainian provider Aerohandling LLC for a new inflight duty free selection.

Passengers will now be able to pre-order duty free items as well as making a purchase onboard.

The partnership allows UIA to offer customers an enhanced duty free selection including novelties, new product groups, and bestsellers at competitive prices.

The Pre-order Duty Free Selection platform will be available from July for passengers on international flights. It is an option expected to particularly suit passengers with restricted cabin luggage.

Evgeniya Satska, UIA communications director, says: “We chose DFA because they possess the industry expertise, strong product portfolio, and state-of-the-art technology. We look forward to growing the partnership and creating enhanced experience for our passengers.”

Kaelis innovates the inflight tray

June 19, 2019

Kaelis has developed a new inflight tray designed to include a device dock so passengers can continue using the tech while enjoying their food onboard.

The new Bassú tray features an integral smartphone or tablet rest alongside the food setting so digital entertainment can continue on the device, leaving hands free for eating.

Bassú is a light, ergonomic and useful: the simple inclusion of a small slot solves space problems in the folding tray and adds a new element of convenience to the passenger experience.

Emirates drop single-use plastics

June 19, 2019

Emirates has made a network-wide commitment to reduce single-use plastics onboard its aircraft, starting with plastic straws which are being replaced with eco-friendly paper straws.

In addition to plastic straws, plastic swizzle sticks and stirrers will also be replaced with eco-friendly alternatives by the end of the year. From August, plastic bags used for Inflight Retail purchases will also be replaced with paper bags. These initiatives will remove an estimated 81.7 million single-use plastic items from landfill each year.

Trials have been conducted on Emirates flights to explore various recycling initiatives onboard and Emirates staff and cabin crew constantly give feedback and suggestions on other environmentally friendly ideas. The airline is also segregating large plastic bottles to be recycled, diverting an estimated three tonnes or about 150,000 plastic bottles from landfill in Dubai each month.

A full review of the plastics on board has been conducted and over the next few months, the airline will gradually implement other initiatives to tackle plastic waste.

The initiatives are part of the airline’s ongoing sustainability efforts. In 2017, Emirates introduced ecoTHREAD™ blankets made from recycled plastic bottles for its Economy Class cabin. Each blanket is made from 28 recycled plastic bottles and by the end of this year, Emirates would have saved 88 million plastic bottles from landfill from this initiative alone.

Read more about our environmental efforts here:

Flying Food Group extends for TAP

June 19, 2019

Flying Food Group is now catering two new routes for TAP Air Portugal.

The company’s Chicago and San Francisco facilities have begun catering five weekly flights each to Lisbon. Flying Food Group also caters TAP at Miami and Newark.

Nicolas Rondeau, Flying Food Group executive vice president of airline sales and marketing, noted that when an existing customer adds catering gates, it affirms the quality of products and service that have been consistently provided. TAP has been a Flying Food Group customer since 2011.


Local focus for ferry menu

June 19, 2019

British ferry operator P&O Ferries has unveiled an extensive new menu onboard its Dover to Calais and North Sea routes, with an emphasis on fresh, locally-sourced ingredients to suit vegetarians, vegans and meat eaters alike.

Elevating the onboard dining experience for customers, the new Brasserie menu, is offered in partnership with the UK’s largest independent hospitality provider BaxterStorey.

Menu highlights include a range of new starters and sharing platters, including a Vegetarian Platter of feta cheese, potato salad and stuffed vine leaves.

Mains include a halloumi burger served in a beetroot bun and a white bean cassoulet, with a side of chive mashed potatoes. For vegans, a tasty vegan pizza topped with vegan cheese and roasted vegetables is available, as well as linguine all’arrabbiata served with hard vegan cheese, sun blushed tomatoes and olives.

More to see in Singapore

June 12, 2019

Two new exhibitors have been confirmed for this year’s Onboard Hospitality Forum Asia – Zibo Rainbow and DOFOOD.

Taking place in Singapore, November 12-13, the event is part of the FTE-APEX Asia EXPO event, where Onboard Hospitality will invite inflight catering, wellbeing, design and innovation specialists to meet within their own dedicated area.

Zibo Rainbow has 20 years’ experience in the design, manufacture and supply of inflight products including amenity kits, toiletries, sleeper suits, towels, blankets, bed linens, pillows, pillow cases, non-woven products, non-skid paper, airsickness bags, paper meal service packaging, food handbags, paper cups , plastic products (plastic trays, tableware, cup drawer), chinaware and glassware.

DOFOOD provides tailor-made onboard food solutions. Its recipes are made to fit each unique market and its food culture. Under standard operating procedures and strict food safety management system, all products are prepared using standardised recipes and in-season ingredients to maintain taste and product standard. Its R&D team has created more than 600 recipes.

For the full list of exhibitors and more information on the event, click the below link:

New meat-free meals from SAS

June 12, 2019

SAS is keeping up with the growing trend for meat-free meals by adding two vegetarian options to its award-winning New Nordic By SAS menus.

The seasonal dishes will follow the concept’s commitment to high-quality ingredients sourced from small-scale Scandinavian producers and suppliers.

The new dishes to kick off the vegetarian choice are cauliflower roasted in camelina oil with a Gotland lentil, black bean and beet-flavoured wheat salad, and Hällestads mushrooms preserved in dill and horseradish with a rutabaga, Slätte Gård field pea, radish and Persula Gårds roasted turnip, rapeseed salad.

New Nordic by SAS is included for SAS Plus customers on over 80,000 departures on short-haul Scandinavian and European flights lasting 80 minutes or more.

Travellers opting for a vegetarian or vegan meal onboard can pre-order in SAS Plus or purchase them in SAS Go.

Evertaste wins new awards

June 12, 2019

LSG Group’s pre-packaged convenience food line Evertaste has picked up two prizes at the prestigious German Brand Awards.

Evertaste was in a winner in the awards’ Excellent Brands category, taking the ‘Gold’ prize for Corporate Services, and ‘Best of the Best’ award for Brand Innovation of the Year.

“Both prizes are seals of quality that prove our brand expertise,” said Frank Theis, LSG Group’s head of global sales and marketing. “Our heartfelt congratulations to our Evertaste and Global Marketing teams. We are so proud of you!”

The Evertaste brand was launched by the LSG Group as an overarching global brand for convenience food at WTCE in April 2018. It features a portfolio of ready-to-eat products including baked goods, hot meals, pre-packaged salads, boxed meals, desserts, snacks, sandwiches and wraps.

The award judges praised the Evertaste concept, saying it was “an outstanding work of branding from A to Z, which presents itself with a fresh and contemporary design and leaves the LSG Group well prepared for its step into another market segment.”

Fresh partnership between Delta and LE LABO

June 12, 2019

Delta is teaming up with artisanal fragrance brand LE LABO for the launch of its refreshed premium TUMI amenity kits this month.

The new Delta One kits will feature a selection of basil-scented products from LE LABO’s plant-based Body-Hair-Face collection.

Additionally, the brand will be rolled out to more than 50 Delta Sky Club lounges later this year.

“Delta and LE LABO share a passion for connecting people and places through personalised experiences,” said Ekrem Dimbiloglu, Delta’s director — onboard product and customer experience. “That passion, along with LE LABO’s dedication to the highest standards of quality, make it a natural choice in our efforts to create delightful moments throughout the travel experience for our customers.”

Delta has partnered with business and lifestyle accessory supplier TUMI since 2013. The latest incarnation of amenity kits are being designed with sustainability in mind, with all single-use plastics removed.

IN Air Travel Experience focuses on sustainability

June 5, 2019

IN Air Travel Experience has launched what it claims to be is an unbiased environmental sustainability manifesto for airlines.

The Susta.IN manifesto has been designed to be ‘context-specific, purpose-driven, affordable and actionable’.

It is curated to help airlines define an objective view and deep understanding of sustainable initiatives, and aid them in making the right choices before investing in any change.

Founder Anne De Hauw says: “The Circular Economy Initiative by the EU and especially the new directive around single-use plastics, will heavily affect the airline operations and airlines are in some cases not well prepared for such impactful change.

“Incumbent suppliers and plastic producer’s main interest is to maximize their own product portfolio rather than offering the most optimal sustainable solutions for the airline, making it very hard for airlines to navigate through the jungle of so-called ‘’green’’ solutions.

“Susta.IN offers real, durable and impartial insights for The Sustainable Cabin, scrutinizes the cost, value and lifecycle of products & services, considers recyclability and waste management, and creates well-curated innovative solutions.”

Flying Food Group new ANA A380 service

June 5, 2019

Flying Food Group’s Honolulu facility (HNL) is now catering ANA A380 flights between Honolulu and Tokyo (NRT).

The three times weekly A380 service launched on May 24 and expands to daily flights in July.

Nicolas Rondeau, Flying Food Group executive vice president, airline sales and marketing, noted this is ANA’s debut A380 route. Features of the double-deck, 520-seat aircraft include passenger bars and multi-purpose passenger changing area.

“Flying Food Group is proud to be catering this deluxe new aircraft,” Rondeau added.

Flying Food Group also caters ANA at Chicago, New York JFK, Seattle and San Francisco. The airline has been a Flying Food Group customer since 2006 and Flying Food Group has catered ANA at Honolulu since 2016.

Celebratory kits for Uzbekistan

June 5, 2019

Uzbekistan Airways has prepared a special gift for passengers to mark national celebrations for Nowruz.

Nowruz is an ancient celebration which marks the beginning of summer according to the solar calendar, and new celebratory amenity kits have been offered onboard to acknowledge the event.

Created by AK-Service, the kits are inspired by the natural landscapes of Uzbekistan, and the designs aim to emphasise the richness of the centuries-old Uzbek culture.

In addition to the usual comfort items, the new amenity kit includes soft, comfortable slippers, a sleep mask and Caudalie toiletries.

Europe – Cross border services get a boost

June 5, 2019

As the Channel Tunnel, which joins the UK and France celebrates its 25th Anniversary, it’s estimated that over 400m people have travelled through its 25- mile length (37.9 kilometres).

Now HS1, the UK’s first high-speed railway on which Eurostar operates between the Channel and London, wants to introduce a new high-speed service between Bordeaux and London St Pancras.

HS1 says more than 1 million people fly between Britain and southwest France each year and that a direct train service would carry at least 200,000 passengers per annum, providing huge environmental benefits.

“The prospect of train travel between the centre of London and Bordeaux in less than five hours brings southwest France within easy reach for business travellers and holidaymakers,” says Keith Ludeman, chair of HS1. “France is the second most popular holiday destination for Brits abroad. This is on top of the one in four British citizens in France that live near Bordeaux so the commercial incentive to open up this route is clear.”

HS1 has also said that it aspires to link London with Frankfurt and Geneva with additional high-speed services, another step towards a fully connected high-speed Europe.

Join the sustainability debate

May 29, 2019

In response to the growing demand for more sustainable business practices and products, Onboard Hospitality is partnering with Monty’s Bakehouse to stage a series of high-level Sustainablility Roundtable Summits starting this autumn.

Hosted by Monty’s Bakehouse at its Innovation Centre close to Gatwick Airport in the UK, these Summits will call on industry influencers, decision-makers and stakeholders to come together to debate the industry’s many challenges, and seek serious solutions that the industry can get behind.

The first Summit will be held on October 8, 2019 and will focus on the often-complex issue of packaging. The debate will focus on innovative solutions that can help reduce plastics onboard, practical initiatives that could help create a more circular economy in the air, and legislation around waste, recycling and the global differences in approach to this challenge.

To be a part of the conversation contact the Monty’s Bakehouse team by emailing

En Route invests in Europe

May 29, 2019

En Route International has upped its investment in its European business with the launch of a new Belgian facility and the appointment of a dedicated Madrid-based business development manager.

The facility, near Antwerp, will see En Route enhance its packing and logistics operations in mainland Europe, creating a base for further growth in the region. It will become the base for En Route’s European distribution network.

Julio Parra becomes business development manager for mainland Europe, in a newly created role. Parra, has been based at the company’s UK head office for the past 18 months, brings a wealth of sales experience from both Spain and the UK. He will work with En Route’s global team to expand its logistics, packing and sales focus in mainland Europe.

En Route has developed a strong presence in Europe over the past 10 years with a supply chain and weekly distribution capability covering frozen, chilled and ambient regimes. This enables the company’s global customer base to provide network wide product solutions to all major airports and regions across Europe.

Hamish Cook, executive director, said: “We have been very successful in expanding our global operating platform to provide innovative solutions to major airlines in the USA, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Europe.

“The resourcing of a more European focused business is a natural extension of this strategy and allows us to provide an agile customer focused response to one of our key markets in a post Brexit Europe.”

AK-Service delivers for Rossiya Airlines

May 29, 2019

AK-Service has created a new Business amenity kit for Rossiya Airlines.
The kit is focused on adding comfort and includes a practical bag in the airline’s corporate colours and includes soft slippers, sleep mask, earplugs and professional toiletries from the Swiss brand Transvital.

Irish Rail tenders for catering

May 29, 2019

Irish Rail has issued a call to tender for its catering services on the mainline trains from Dublin Heuston to the South, including to Cork, Galway, Limerick and Tralee, currently operated by Corporate Catering. The contact award is thought to be likely by the year end.

Irish Rail’s services include the main line to Cork, which uses Mark 4 trains with an on-board restaurant, plus smaller intercity trains operating to Galway, Limerick and Tralee amongst other locations.

Buzz brings Spider-Man onboard with United

May 22, 2019

United Airlines is to launch a new inflight safety demonstration video featuring Spider-Man in an entertaining mini-drama film.

And a broader promotional partnership with Sony Pictures in celebration of Spider-Man™: Far From Home, in North American will include one-of-a-kind Spider-Man: Far From Home-themed Polaris Business class amenity kits and unique opportunities for MileagePlus members to see the forthcoming summer blockbuster.

The video highlights United’s commitment to inflight safety and features MileagePlus members who bid miles for the chance to appear in the video alongside cast members from this summer’s highly anticipated film.

United’s vp of marketing, Mark Krolick, said: “We are excited to have Spider-Man and his friends, along with our employees, bring new attention to the inflight safety video and creatively engage customers on such an important announcement.”

Beginning in June, United customers travelling in Polaris business class will receive a limited-edition Spider-Man: Far From Home themed amenity kit facilitated by Buzz. The kit features Spidey-branded comfort products including an eye mask, socks, tissues, ear plugs, a toothbrush and a pen alongside luxury Sunday Riley skincare products, designed exclusively for United customers.

Retail inMotion wins Cathay Pacific’s retail deal

May 22, 2019

Retail inMotion has been awarded the contract to run travel retail programmes for Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon.

Beginning in early 2020, Retail inMotion will assume full management of the airlines’ boutique and duty-free onboard-retail programme, working in partnership with the airlines to enhance customer experience while delivering financial returns.

The scope of the contract includes the complete range of retail services, from product sourcing and management to warehousing and distribution, crew training and engagement, catalogue design and customer service. The programme will be supported by the onboard-retail platform (Vector In-Flight), facilitating payment processing and fulfillment, as well as all of the back-end systems for reconciliation, inventory & warehouse management and reporting functionality.

“Retail inMotion and the LSG Group impressed us with their in-depth understanding of the travel retail industry and ability to leverage on technology to improve our customers’ shopping experience,” said Ronald Lam, Cathay Pacific’s director commercial and cargo. “We look forward to building a strong partnership with Retail inMotion to take our travel retail business to new heights.”

Turkish adds Umrah kit for pilgrims

May 22, 2019

Kaelis and Turkish Airlines have collaborated on a new Umrah kit presented to its passengers on an Umrah pilgrimage – made by Muslims to Mecca at any time of the year.

The airline was keen to improve its Umrah offering and the Kaelis team developed a special kit with strong attention to detail.

The kit contains a range of specially-designed comfort items for use inflight and at the destination and is intended to add to the memorable experience of a pilgrimage.

Each Umrah kit comprises a light-weight bag with adjustable straps and zip. The interior includes an organising divider and holds anti-slip prayer mat, 
electronic finger-tally counter, and 
 Tawaf socks with a non-slip sole.

LSG Sky Chefs ups its offer in Phoenix

May 22, 2019

LSG Sky Chefs has opened a new customer service centre in Phoenix, Arizona, four kilometres from Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX).

The newly-renovated building feature the latest innovative kitchen technology and customer-centered features. The 97,000 square-feet unit includes an almost 60,000 square-feet space dedicated to production, where 375 employees produce more than 5,000 airline meals and almost 11,000 retail meals daily.

Customers include American Airlines, United Airlines, Alaska Airlines, Air Canada, among others, as well as retail customer, Circle K.

The facility was constructed with a focus on efficient and intelligent operational design to provide customers with consistent high-quality meals while keeping its environmental footprint to a minimum. Next-generation kitchen equipment, means this unit can produce large volumes of food with less power usage without sacrificing quality.

An automated guiding vehicle also streamlines operational efficiency, while sky lights and LED lighting help to minimize energy consumption. Eco-friendly processes throughout the operation have proven to reduce overall water consumption.

UK – Abellio wins again

May 22, 2019

Abellio, the Dutch Railways subsidiary, has had further success in the UK rail franchising market, winning the East Midlands franchise. Beginning in August 2019 the contract will run for 8 years.

East Midlands encompasses the line up through the middle of England from London St Pancras to Nottingham, Derby and Sheffield. This 8-year franchise will see Abellio introduce a new fleet of intercity trains arriving in 2022.

Dominic Booth, Managing Director of Abellio UK said, “Abellio is proud to have been selected as the winning bidder for the East Midlands franchise. We look forward to this franchise driving economic growth and delivering significant benefits for the passengers. Abellio will invest £600m in improvements to trains and stations, maximising the effect of the Government’s £1.5bn upgrade of the Midland Main Line, to make journeys easier, more reliable and comfortable for our passengers.

Abellio already runs Scotrail, Greater Anglia and West Midlands railways operating over 6000 trains a day in the UK, and this new contract elevates them to being a major player in Britain’s railway market.

Eurostar goes veggie

May 15, 2019

Eurostar has announced it will be turning vegetarian and transforming the menu to offer passengers a range of meat-free meals to celebrate National Vegetarian Week.

From the 13 – 19 May, customers travelling from London to mainland Europe in Business Premier and Standard Premier class will be offered new dishes designed to showcase the great taste of seasonal and sustainable vegetables.

To create the new menu, Eurostar worked closely with Michelin star chef and Eurostar Business Premier Culinary Director, Raymond Blanc OBE. Using sustainable local ingredients, Blanc designed hot and cold dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner to be served during National Vegetarian Week.

New dishes include spring onion and cheddar frittata, field mushrooms with paprika and soy sauce, spinach with hollandaise sauce and tomato for breakfast, and celeriac, spinach and lentil curry with cauliflower and courgette crumble for lunch or dinner.

The decision to broaden the train-line’s vegetarian dining options was informed by the results of a Eurostar survey that revealed more than a third of British, French and Belgians have a meat-free day or meal each week.

According to the poll, almost a quarter of Brits do not consider themselves meat-eaters, and around 9% now identify as ‘flexitarian’.

LNER’s first-ever East Coast Azuma train

May 15, 2019

LNER has launched its first bullet-style Azuma train on the East Coast mainline between London King’s Cross and Leeds.

The new train made its inaugural passenger journey today, departing London at 11.03 and arriving in Leeds at 13.16, completing the route in just over two hours travelling at around 125mph.

It is the first of 65 new trains, which will replace the existing LNER fleet connecting key cities in the East Midlands, Yorkshire, North-east England and Scotland.

The state-of-the-art train was developed with Hitachi Rail and embraces Japanese bullet train technology. Lighter and longer than the existing trains, they travel faster and have an average 100 more passenger seats per train.

Hull will become the first destination to have all its rail services operated by Azuma, with the new service being rolled out across the entire 936-mile East Coast route in the coming months.

The new trains will feature an all-new on-board passenger experience. “From extra leg-room and improved WiFi to being more environmentally friendly and accessible to more people, the Azuma experience is a real revolution in rail travel,” says LNER’s managing director, David Horne.

Compared with the existing trains, the Azuma’s carriages are longer and First Class has larger tables, reclining seats with adjustable headrests, and both USB and plug sockets at every seat.

LNER’s customer experience director, Claire Ansley, told OBH: “We launched all of our new product range and new menus two weeks ago which our Hero Chefs have put together using local ingredients, local provenance, local suppliers and customer research.”

“We provide an inclusive first-class offering, which includes food and drink. Then on evening trains, we have 10 signature trains coming out of Kings Cross that offer a three-course meal.”

New dishes prepared in the onboard kitchens and served in First Class include stilton and broccoli quiche, vegetable curry and chicken cassava.

Passengers travelling in standard class have access to the Let’s Eats Café Bar. “That retail range is new as well,” says Ansley. “We guarantee a choice of four Hero hot products every day developed by the Hero Chefs, such as a really high-quality ham and cheese baguette. We have the popular trolley service serving our standard class as well, and table service in first.”

New Alitalia route for FFG

May 15, 2019

Flying Food Group’s Washington, D.C. facility (IAD) is now catering Alitalia’s new route between Washington, D.C. and Rome.

The service operates five times a week. Flying Food Group also services Alitalia at four other locations: Chicago; Los Angeles; Miami and New York City.

Announcing the successful May 2 launch, Nicolas Rondeau, Flying Food Group executive vice president, airline sales and marketing, noted that Flying Food Group noted the airline has been a Flying Food Group customer continually since 1990.

Brussels Airlines’ new Premium Economy on sale

May 15, 2019

Brussels Airlines is celebrating the launch of its new Premium Economy cabin with a sale on flights to North America.

The first aircraft retro-fitted with the new onboard experience joined the fleet on April 29, introducing customers to a refreshed Business and Economy too. A total of five aircrafts are being fitted with the new cabins.

The new Premium Economy cabin contains 21 premium seats with a 38-inch pitch, increased private space, cushioning and an expanded armrest. Compared with Economy seats, the new Premium Economy has a bigger headrest, a wider seat and a 40-degree recline.

The seats each feature 13.3-inch HD screens, among the largest HD Premium Economy screens on European carriers. The seats also feature a large table with AC and USB power plugs.

The new cabins will be roiled out across the North America network and gradually across African routes later this year. Until that time, Economy class customers travelling on a retrofitted aircraft have the chance to upgrade their ticket for only €90.

Turkish Airlines introduces overnight kits

May 15, 2019

New overnight kits designed by inflight supplier Galileo Watermark are now available on Turkish Airlines.

The new male and female tailored kits for premium economy passengers were developed to include all the essentials needed for an overnight stay.

Filled with a number of useful personal and hygiene items, as well as bath and cosmetic products from British brand Scaramouche + Fandango, the printed micro-fibre bags are designed to be reused as an iPad case or document holder.

The female kit includes a t-shirt, underwear, eye mask, socks, personal care pack, comb, dental kit, shampoo, body lotion and deodorant. The male kit features a shaving kit and aftershave lotion instead of the body lotion and care pack.

New Sport b. amenity kit for EVA Air

May 15, 2019

EVA Air has collaborated with French leisurewear brand Sport b and inflight supplier Galileo Watermark to create a new unisex amenity kit for its Premium Economy travellers.

The new kit combines EVA Air branding with Sport b’s sporty minimalist style and features a smart black twill bag with a tonal logo print and lining, designed to be used long after the flight has landed.

Travel amenities in the kit include a Sport b. eye mask, dental kit with White Glo toothpaste, ear plugs, comb and a skincare duo from British brand Scaramouche + Fandango.

Also contained in the kit, the lip balm and hydrator have been specifically designed for inflight use to provide skin hydration for passengers onboard.

The contemporary kit follows the previous award-winning design recognised at the Onboard Hospitality Awards.

It is now available on all Premium Economy long haul routes into Taiwan, and will be rolled out across the fleet.

Aer Lingus adds premium economy

May 9, 2019

Ireland’s national carrier, Aer Lingus, has unveiled a new enhanced economy offering, AerSpace, which flyers will be able to experience from September 1 2019. The premium economy service will be available to travellers on short-haul flights between selected UK destinations and Ireland.

Travellers booking AerSpace seats will be guaranteed a first-row window or aisle seat with an unoccupied middle seat for added comfort, and reserved cabin space overhead. AerSpace customers will also benefit from complimentary lounge access, fast-track security and priority boarding.

Onboard refreshments from Aer Lingus’ on-board menu are also included in the fare. AerClub members will also collect Avios on their AerSpace purchase.

Aer Lingus says the addition of the four premium economy AerSpace seats per flight is in response to market research that suggests a quarter of customers between Dublin and London are flying for business reasons.

Susanne Carberry, Aer Lingus Director of Network Revenue and Loyalty, said: “We are thrilled to introduce a new option which gives greater comfort and convenience to our guests.”

“We are proud to launch AerSpace in response to feedback from our guests seeking a more premium and spacious travel experience when flying short haul with Aer Lingus.”

LSG Group’s solid growth

May 9, 2019

LSG Group has announced solid growth for the first quarter of this year, with profits up 6% on the same period last year. The company reported an increase in revenues and earnings despite two major hub catering contracts in South Korea and Italy expiring last year.

Announcing consolidated sales of EUR 765 million, LSG Group said it had also achieved an adjusted EBIT (earnings before interest and taxes) of EUR 2 million, which is 100% above the previous year’s first quarter.

Its earnings were bolstered by important catering contracts with United Airlines and airBaltic being renewed at the beginning of the year, while it also secured a new contract to manage Japan Airline’s lounges in the German city of Frankfurt.

In addition to management contracts, the company has recently expanded its catering facilities with a new hub in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi.

Its LSG Sky Chefs units in Belgium’s capital Brussels and Argentina’s capital city Buenos Aires were recently recognised at the QSAI (Quality and Safety Alliance Inflight Catering Program) awards as the best catering operations in EMEA and the Americas.

“Coming in the typically weak first quarter of the year, we are very satisfied with this development,” said LSG Group’s chief financial officer, Dr Kristin Neumann.

“Adjusted for currency translation effects, we achieved growth in almost all of our regions and divisions, which shows that our success is based on a solid foundation that appears to extend from the positive results of 2018.”

World’s first waste-free flight

May 9, 2019

The first-ever waste-free flight took to the skies this week. The commercial flight operated by Australian airline Qantas flew between the cities of Sydney and Adelaide, producing zero refuse to send to landfill.

All inflight products on board QF739, staffed by cabin crew from Qantas’ ‘Green Team’, will be disposed of via compost, reuse or recycling.

About 1000 single-use plastic items were substituted with sustainable alternatives or removed altogether from the flight, including individually-packaged servings of milk and Vegemite.

Alternative products used during the flight include meal containers made from sugar cane and cutlery made from crop starch, all of which is fully compostable.

The Qantas lounges at Sydney Airport’s domestic terminal also went ‘green’ for the flight, with multiple waste streams in use.
The flight marks the start of Qantas’ plan to cut 100 million single-use plastics by the end of 2020 and eliminate 75 per cent of the airline’s waste by the end of 2021.

Etihad cuts carbon

May 9, 2019

The UAE’s national carrier, Etihad Airways, is continuing to find ways to reduce its carbon emissions by implementing fuel-saving initiatives on its flights.

Fuel consumption is influenced by several factors such as air traffic management, weight carried and how the aircraft is flown, so last year Etihad replaced a section of its fleet with lightweight and fuel-efficient Boeing 787 Dreamliners.

Several weight reduction projects have also been completed, including a carpet retrofit across the airline’s fleet to a lighter option, the refining of catering loads based on the actual number of passengers onboard, and controlling the amount of potable water loaded based on actual requirement.
Additional initiatives to reduce fuel burn and carbon emissions include pilots only using a single engine to taxi the aircraft on and off the terminal tarmac and pilot’s selecting lower flap settings upon landing. To help them track their fuel-saving achievements, a new app has been introduced for Etihad’s pilots.

Statistics on reduced engine taxiing as well as reduced flap landings have demonstrated great fuel-saving results. Etihad says it reduced 148,000 tonnes of carbon emissions in 2018, the equivalent to around 1,236 flights between Abu Dhabi and Barcelona.

Etihad Airways’ VP of flight operations, Captain Sulaiman Yaqoobi, commented: “By increasing collaboration on a monthly basis within the airline’s flight, network and ground operations and engineering, Etihad saw noticeable improvements to its fuel savings and emissions profile, a top agenda for a sustainable airline.”

Etihad operates a sustainability programme that includes long-term projects such as aviation biofuel development.

In January 2019, Etihad Airways flew the world’s first commercial flight using locally produced sustainable fuel made from plants grown in saltwater, the flagship project of the Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium.

Etihad’s new dining concept

May 1, 2019

Etihad Airways is to roll out a new Economy dining concept and retail offering as part of a wider programme of enhancements.

Unveiled this week, the upgraded meal service introduces larger bistro-style meals with a focus on fresh seasonal ingredients and more destination focused choices.

A new curved triangular base plate design reflects the heritage of Abu Dhabi and is made using recycled materials. New cutlery is 85% lighter, reducing aircraft weight and fuel burn. On flights of three hours or more, dessert items will be served separately with the after-meal coffee and tea service, reducing clutter on the tray during the main meal.

Another change will be the addition of an expanded ‘Sweet or Salty’ retail menu, facilitated by Retail inMotion, which complements the core dining service. Options available for purchase will include a Tapas box, hot dishes and premium sweet and savoury snacks for adults and children. Partnerships with top brands include Bateel, Starbucks, Thorntons, Cawston Press, Heavenly, Perrier and Barebells.

Tony Douglas, group ceo for Etihad Aviation Group, said the change would allow guests to personalise their travel experiences by giving them greater control and choice.

In its drive to reduce single-use plastic use by 80% by 2022, Etihad has committed to ditching the 27 million plastic lids and other containers it uses each year.

The catering changes are part of a wider fleet renewal programme with will see an economy cabin upgrade and refurbishment of 23 narrow-body Airbus A320 and A321, along with the addition of new personalised wireless streaming entertainment. Guests will be able to stream more than 300 hours of free inflight entertainment to smartphone and tablet devices through Etihad’s onboard Panasonic eXW system.

APOT set for Shanghai

May 1, 2019

Industry colleagues are being urged to book their places for APOT.Asia, which will this year take place in Shanghai, China.

The 2019 event will be held at the InterContinental Expo Hotel, from June 16-18, and early details of what’s in store have been revealed in advance of full details of the speaker line-up and business sessions.

Day One will kick off with delegate registration and judging sessions for The Mercurys, followed by the option of a range of Shanghai city tours. Visitors will have their first chance to meet up with colleagues at a Welcome Drinks in the evening – an event that will feature an array of regional street food.

Day Two includes a packed programme of conferencing, networking, the trade show and a gala dinner in the evening, while Day Three is given over to making the most of meeting contacts with a day at the five-star Tomson Golf Resort, a Chinese tea ceremony, and evening river cruise cultural evening.

To attend, APOT.Asia guests from some countries will need to obtain a visa. The organisation’s website includes the invitation letter needed for your application.

Non-profit APOT is positioned as the region’s leading representative group for professionals in the airline hospitality, services and supply industry. It also aims to promote regional tourism and destinations through its members and their influence.

New onboard talent search launches today

May 1, 2019

Building on its involvement in Onboard Hospitality’s highly successful mentorship programme and sessions at WTCE 2019, The Hayward Partnership (THP) is today (May 1) expanding its service portfolio to include executive talent search and placement.

The new business gets off to a flying start with industry recruitment stalwart Roy Wilson transitioning into THP all the established core activities and market opportunities he has successfully developed through his recruitment business Sterling Bridge, well known across the onboard hospitality sector. Roy, whose reputation, experience and network is highly valued and respected will continue to support the new venture in the longer term too.

Commenting on the initiative, Wilson said: “I have found it very rewarding to support individuals find new opportunities with like-minded companies in the travel sector and am very happy to be working with The Hayward Partnership to develop their new talent search and placement service. Both Lance Hayward and Mike Pooley, who are leading this development, continue to have successful careers and a great network in the business and this will be very helpful to companies and candidates searching talent and opportunities.”

Hayward added: “Roy was my first great mentor in the industry as my boss at Forte Airport Services, Gatwick. His brand of personable customer service and attention to detail has had a lasting and very positive influence on my career. I will never forget the encouragement he gave and the confidence he showed in me in those formative years! It’s an honour to be working alongside him again, helping to develop and support new talent going forward.”

Mike Pooley, who is famously committed to nurturing new talent in the industry and a driving force behind the Onboard Hospitality Mentoring Network, said: “I have personally enjoyed and benefitted from great mentors and inspired leadership and it has always been an ambition to pass on some of the experiences, principles and values I have experienced to enhance the personal development and career ambitions of the next generation of much needed talent, energy and resources. This new initiative with THP allows me to get increasingly involved in building fresh industry credentials and profiles in a very current and progressive way.”

As part of the collaboration Onboard Hospitality will now feature an expanded range of job vacancies, plus regular online features on professional development, careers within the industry and advice on navigating your way to the best roles. If you have advice or opinions to share, or jobs to promote please get in touch.

The Hayward Partnership is at heart a “virtual organisation” of independent experts who have all been at the very sharp end of their respective fields. They provide objective, practical expertise to organisations of all sizes in the food, beverage and retail travel sector to help them to succeed. Combined, they are a resource and knowledge pool. They share expertise, ideas, opportunities and camaraderie. The partners are selected by invitation only, based on reputation, experience, track record, network connections and personality!

Learn more
THP executive search

SWISS celebrates veggie style

May 1, 2019

SWISS will celebrate the 10th anniversary of its partnership with Hiltl of Zurich, the world’s oldest vegetarian restaurant, with an exclusive three-course meat-free meal option for Economy travellers on selected long-haul flights during May.

Hiltl vegetarian meals were first offered aboard SWISS flights as part of the airline’s award-winning “SWISS Taste of Switzerland” inflight foodservice programme in May 2009.

The anniversary offering will feature a starter of a spicy beetroot tabbouleh, a main course choice of penne with vegetarian bolognaise or a massaman curry and a vegan mango mousse dessert.

Travellers in First and Business will also be offered special Hiltl anniversary meals. SWISS First customers will have the additional main course option of a vegetarian Tofu Mirsang, while SWISS Business travellers can choose potato gnocchi in a saffron sauce.

Hiltl’s owner and ceo Rolf Hiltl said: “I am delighted that SWISS’s awareness of the potential offered by vegetarian cuisine has risen so much in the last 10 years. This has also enabled us to grow increasingly bold in our inflight meal creations.”

Some 40% of SWISS’s Economy Class travellers now opt for the vegetarian meal offering.

New lounge at JFK

May 1, 2019

British Airways has put the finishing touches on its £50 million investment at New York’s JFK Airport with the opening of the new Club lounge.

The 22,000sq ft space features relaxed seating areas, work stations with power outlets, an entertainment room with state-of-the-art entertainment and sound from Sony, and new-look Elemis Spa offering a range of treatments.

Last autumn, BA unveiled a new premium lounge for First passengers at the airport, along with changes to the gate area in Terminal 7 to make facilities more comfortable and welcoming.

The new lounge includes a brasserie-style dining room where travellers can enjoy freshly prepared dishes from an extensive menu or a range of smaller items chosen to allow customers to ‘grab and go’. Meanwhile, the airline has adopted a partnership approach for its bar options – the granite topped Quaich Bar, created in partnership with the Quaich bar at the Craigellachie in Speyside, Scotland, offers a range of cocktails, while a BrewDog beer room has been designed with the popular UK craft brewer. It will serve an exclusive beer – Speedbird 100 – on flights from May 1.

The lounge is the third to feature BA’s new contemporary look, following similar openings in Rome and Aberdeen last year. BA offers up to 12 transatlantic flights between New York and London each day.

Dnata expands in U.S.

May 1, 2019

Dnata is ramping up its catering operations in the U.S. with the opening of new facilities at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston.

The 4,700sqm operation has the capacity to provide 10,000 meals a day and has created 150 new jobs. Launch customer is British Airways, which operates two daily flights from Houston.

The investment heralds a period of expansion for the air services provider. It intends to further enhance its U.S. airport presence by opening additional catering facilities at Boston (BOS), Los Angeles (LAX), Newark (EWR) and San Francisco (SFO) by the end of the year.

Robin Padgett, divisional senior vice president for dnata’s catering division, said: “Our expansion into Houston once again underlines our commitment to the United States, where we see excellent business opportunities for dnata.”

Dnata expanded in the U.S. catering market in 2018 through the acquisition of 121 Inflight Catering. Besides Houston, dnata currently operates catering facilities at three U.S. airports, in New York (JFK), Nashville (BNA) and Orlando (SFB), serving commercial, VIP and private aviation companies, fixed base operators and charter aircraft operators.

Win-win appointment for ACA

April 24, 2019

Fabio Gamba, md of the Airline Catering Association, has been appointed director general of the Airport Services Association (ASA), and will now represent both organisations, finding synergies where appropriate.

Additionally, Steve Allen, divisional senior vice president of dnata, has been elected by the ASA board as its new chairman. Allen said: “Fabio is the perfect fit for the Airport Services Association to lead our organisation into the 2020s. Given his wealth of experience in managing associations in the aviation sector, he will hit the ground running. With his deep expertise and passion for aviation, he will be able to deliver for our members and the 1.6 million employees working in the airport services sector globally.”

Erdmann Rauer, chairman of ACA and ceo of the LSG Group, said: “This is a win-win situation for both associations. Sharing the same leadership, the airport services and inflight catering industries will be more effective in making their voices heard. From safety and security, to training and staff retention, to providing quality services to airlines and passengers, we face very similar tasks and challenges. Fabio’s background and expertise support the two associations in generating substantial synergies.”

Gamba added: “My clear priority is to strengthen the reputation of both the ground handling and airline catering industry.”

He remains based in Brussels and the two organisations will continue to operate independently with separate boards, working groups, memberships and finances.

Bucher’s new half cart offer

April 24, 2019

Bucher Aerospace Corporation has launched a half-size version of its thermally insulated galley cart, ARCTICart.

The ATLAS half-size ARCTICart enables cabin crew to serve chilled food and drinks to passengers without the need for chillers, dry ice and other cooling devices inflight and helps ensure efficiencies through reduced weight.

The product can safely store its contents below four degrees for up to 20 hours ensuring food safety by reducing the risk of food contamination during ground handling and protecting food in hot climates.

The half-size ARCTICart launch comes eight months after the full-size version of the product received Technical Standard Orders (TSO) Authorisation from the FAA.

Bucher is currently in talks with different airline groups, which have showed interest in the ARCTICart, and is optimistic that a launching customer will be announced during the next few months.

Bucher Aerospace CEO, Francisco Aguilera, said: “I am delighted to announce the launch of this new half-size ARCTICart. The original full-size product was launched with the ambitious objective of giving aircraft operators a catering solution that would significantly reduce the weight and energy consumption of airplanes by removing the need for chillers on commercial aircraft.”

“Already successfully certified, the product can also be used on long, short and medium-haul flights enabling cabin crew to offer return and overnight catering.”

LSG Sky Chefs extends in the U.S

April 24, 2019

United Airlines has extended its catering contract with LSG Sky Chefs. The three-year contract covers 10 retained locations in the United States and Germany and one new location: Incheon, South Korea. LSG Sky Chefs now serves over 900 flights per day across 46 locations worldwide.

“Every contract extension with both new and retained locations fortifies the dynamic partnership between United Airlines and LSG Sky Chefs,” said Dale Messling, the company’s key account manager for United. “We remain committed to providing them with superior customer service and genuinely look forward to securing future contracts and actively reinforcing our professional relationship with United.”

LSG Sky Chefs offers solutions for complete catering programmes, including full-tray menus, premium dining onboard, last-mile logistics, crew training, as well as lounge and hospitality services. It delivers 560 million meals a year and is present at 205 airports across the globe serving more than 300 airlines and a growing number of European train operators.

Regent ups its culinary offering

April 24, 2019

Luxury cruise line Regent Seven Seas has created a collection of culinary experiences for passengers on its new Seven Seas Splendor ship, which will make its maiden voyage in February 2020.

There will be seven new dining venues onboard, offering dishes from different destinations on the ship’s itinerary using locally-sourced ingredients. Pacific Rim, for instance, will serve Pan-Asian cuisine including a new smoking presentation of Dry Ice Sashimi in a dining room inspired by the Far East.

Italy is a staple of the ship’s itinerary and the new La Veranda restaurant will offer an authentic Italian dinner menu and Tuscan wines, plus a lunch Destination Corner showcasing local cuisine and traditional recipes from the ship’s last stop.

French restaurant, Chartreuse, will also form part of the new ship, serving classic French specialties including frog legs in garlic cream sauce with rutabaga.

The ship’s largest restaurant, Compass Rose, will feature Versace dinnerware, chandeliers and gourmet dishes such as paddlefish caviar served with smoked haddock jelly and lemon cream.

Passengers wanting to enhance their cooking skills can join one of 20 cooking classes at the ship’s dedicated Culinary Arts Kitchen with expert chefs and individual cooking stations. The Seven Seas Splendor’s inaugural season will also feature on-shore Gourmet Explorer Tours for guests to explore local gastronomy.

Etihad’s Earth Day initiative

April 24, 2019

UAE national carrier Etihad Airways has become the first airline to operate an ultra long-haul plastic-free flight, timed to celebrate Earth Day on 22 April.

The Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner made the single-use plastic-free flight from Abu Dhabi on April 21, landing in Brisbane on April 22 in a bid to raise awareness of the effects of plastic pollution.

Etihad’s amenity product supplier, Buzz, collaborated with the airline to supply plastic-free amenity kits, eco-plush toys and eco-thread blankets produced from recycled plastic bottles.

The airline also worked with suppliers to ensure products were not wrapped in single-use plastics, and sourced innovative products such as Cupffee’s edible coffee cups, made entirely out of natural grain products.

Etihad identified over 95 single-use plastic products used across aircraft cabins, most of which were replaced with eco-friendly alternatives including cups, cutlery, dishes, headset bags, cart seals and toothbrushes. If suitable replacements could not be sourced, these items were not loaded onto the flight.

As a result of planning the Earth Day flight, Etihad additionally committed to remove up to 20% of the single-use plastic items onboard by June 1 2019.

The milestone flight is part of Etihad’s pledge to reduce single-use plastic usage by 80% not just in-flight, but across the entire organisation by the end of 2022.

Virgin reveals new style

April 16, 2019

Virgin Atlantic has taken inspiration from high-end fashion houses and the automotive industry to create a classic luxury feel for its new Upper Class cabin on the Airbus A350-1000.

The cabin features a newly-designed lie-flat bed suite – built to ensure more privacy and autonomy. Passengers will no longer require the inflight turn down service, but can operate the beds themselves, and diagonal positioning ensures all face towards a window and have aisle access. Each suite has a drop down table with smooth-glide positioning, cocktail table, shelving, improved storage, 18.5 inch touchscreen monitor and adjustable lighting options. IFE can also be accessed and controlled via personal devices. Suites are laid out in a 1-2-1 configuration, each with a 44 inch pitch, and bed length of up to 82 inch, each with deployable privacy screens.

A new social space, The Loft, replaces the bar area Virgin has been famous for. With belted seating for up to six passengers this area includes a 32 inch monitor for shared viewing, Bluetooth headset options, power outlets and USB ports. Cocktails can be served here and new dining experiences are being designed to suit the space.

The Loft will also act as an ‘aspirational gateway’ leading to Premium Economy and Economy cabins. Both will have the largest entertainment screens ever offered at 13.3 inches in Premium and 11.6 inches in Economy. Premium seats have a seven inch recline, increased space for storage, a four way adjustable headrest. Economy seats have been upgraded with new fabrics and adjustable headrests. Economy Light and Classic have a 31 inch seat pitch whilst Economy Delight offers 34 inch. The entire aircraft will also have access to high speed wifi

On sale this month, the airline’s first A350 will begin flying the cabin in August, London Heathrow to New York JFK, followed by other services to JFK later in the year. The airline has 12 Airbus A350-1000, on order scheduled to join the fleet by 2021.

Daniel Kerzner, vp customer experience at Virgin Atlantic, said: “Our mission on this project was to challenge everything we know and build something totally innovative, something for passengers to fall in love with. Every detail is intended to make this the dreamiest aircraft possible and provoke emotion in our passengers. The result is something super comfy, super stylish and unmistakably Virgin.”

New partnership for LSG Group

April 16, 2019

The LSG Group has extended its contract with airBaltic and unveiled a new long-term partnership with Barilla Group.

The airBaltic contract extends activities at the airline’s hub in Riga (RIX), Latvia, for another five years. It covers the existing hybrid-service model, which includes classic airline catering for Business and crew meals, as well as the management of the onboard-retail programme for Economy.

The partnership with Barilla will focus on Barilla pasta ready meals which will now be sold exclusively through Evertaste, the LSG Group’s brand for packaged products. The packaging and taste of the meals have been adapted according to the special requirements of flight operations, and will be offered as onboard retail. By following the enclosed instructions, the pre-cooked pasta can be served al dente.

The offer will start with Maccheroni alla Bolognese and Maccheroni Pomodoro e Basilico with more recipes are under development to extend the range. “We at the LSG Group are excited about this fascinating collaboration,” said Erdmann Rauer. “The culinary expertise of Barilla, a company that stands like few others for the authenticity of Italian cuisine, and our extensive knowledge about the requirements of the aviation industry complement each other perfectly.”

New Aeroflot kits from AK-Service

April 16, 2019

Aeroflot has upgraded its Business amenity kits on both short haul and long haul flights in its latest partnership with AK-Services.

Both kits contain L’occitane cosmetics for hand and skin care, an eye mask and slippers to provide passengers with the upmost comfort onboard.

The long haul flights have a laconic design to emphasise the corporate image of the airline, while the short-haul kits feature the faces of some of its flight attendants which it says are the ‘face of any airline’.
Speaking of the short haul kits a representative said: “Aeroflot Airlines highly appreciates the professionalism of its flight attendants and the best of them are presented on the updated series of business class amenity kits.”

Singapore partners with COMO

April 16, 2019

Singapore Airlines and Singapore-based wellness brand COMO Shambhala, have formed a wide-ranging partnership designed to enhance the customer experience for travellers.

The initial phase of the partnership will see COMO Shambhala’s wellness cuisine introduced on selected Singapore Airlines flights in the second half of this year. Using seasonal and sustainable ingredients each with their own nutrition profile, this style of cooking aims to inspire the palate with memorable and delicious flavours, marrying healthy eating with pleasurable gastronomy.

The inclusion of co-developed wellness dishes will progressively be made available in SIA’s Book the Cook service. In addition, a new wellness menu featuring specially curated dishes will be introduced across all classes.

Future collaborations may also extend to onboard amenities, as well as inflight entertainment content relating to wellness, among others.

“SIA is fully committed to the continuous enhancement of our customer experience. We are proud to be announcing this partnership as it reaffirms our dedication to the holistic wellbeing of our customers,” said Singapore Airlines Senior Vice President Customer Experience, Yeoh Phee Teik.

Milk Jnr’s gets onboard Oman Air

April 16, 2019

Milk Jnr’s & Kidworks has designed, created and launched a new short haul and long haul kid’s amenity kit for Oman Air.

Three characters, Sinbad, Farah and Saif, have been created to keep children engaged during the flights and inspire children to learn about Oman’s culture through their stories and adventures.

Sinbad and Farah are young Omani’s who love to travel and explore together whilst Saif is a turtle. Each character has their own unique personality, allowing connections to form between them and the different age groups and genders of Oman Air’s young flyers.

The short haul kit contains a pencil case, activity book, pencil crayons and sharpener; whilst the long haul pack also includes a drawstring bag instead of a pencil case and stickers.

Aimee Johnstone – brand strategy director at Milk Jnr’s & Kidworks – said: “By introducing characters that are representative of Oman, we want to educate, engage and entertain travellers into a new culture. Making connections between culture and the packs gives a sense of cohesion with the airline which will ultimately help to build brand awareness. Aimee added: All of the pack items have been carefully considered for the relevant age ranges (0-two to aged 10) and based on our expertise in providing the right solutions for short and long haul flights.”

Ernel Eugenio, product development guest experience & branding at Oman Air, added: “We are very happy about these new packs as the creative content builds excitement within our young travelers by encouraging them to learn about Oman whilst also enhancing their in-flight experience and driving an affinity amongst the family market with our brand.”

Gate Gourmet drinks partnership

April 16, 2019

Peter Spanton Drinks and Gate Gourmet have forged a strategic partnership which will see the premium mixer and adult soft drink brand included in beverage offerings onboard.

The full Peter Spanton Drinks range will be available through Gate Gourmet in both bottles and cans.

Jons Hensel, chairman of innovation at Gate Gourmet, said: “This partnership reflects our understanding of what consumers are looking for in the premium drinks market. We are delighted to have Peter Spanton Drinks on board. Their authentic brand story and fantastic product will allow us to deliver innovative, exclusive customer experiences.”

Darryl Burton, md of Peter Spanton Drinks, added: “Air travel is an exciting experience for people and Peter Spanton elevate that experience by offering a drink less ordinary. We are delighted to bring what we do to a much wider audience.”

Flying Food Group expands

April 16, 2019

Flying Food Group’s Seattle facility (SEA) is now catering Japan Airlines’ daily flights between Seattle and Tokyo Narita.

The new contract is the seventh JAL gate to be catered by Flying Food Group with services operating Japan Airlines at Chicago, Honolulu, Kona, Los Angeles, New York City, and San Francisco.

Speaking of the expansion Nicolas Rondeau, Flying Food Group executive vice president, airline sales and marketing said: “When an existing customer chooses Flying Food Group to cater a new location, it confirms their satisfaction with our quality and service.”
Japan Airlines has been a Flying Food Group customer since 2001.

United innovates with Sunday Riley

April 9, 2019

United Airlines has launched new amenity kits featuring luxury skincare brand, Sunday Riley, facilitated by Buzz.

Unveiled during WTCE Hamburg as Buzz celebrated its 20th year in the industry, the new kits will roll out onboard, in the United Polaris lounges, and at United Club locations.

Sunday Riley is frequently described as a cult beauty brand and was chosen as a pioneer in green technology and high-performance skincare formulated with botanicals.

Brand founder, Sunday Riley was born and raised in United’s largest hub market – Houston. VP marketing, Mark Krolick, said: “We are thrilled to be working with a trailblazing businesswoman and entrepreneur who is making a global impact from our Houston hub.”

Three different kits will be offered in Polaris business, Premium plus and Transcon cabins, and toilets will include face mists, hand creams and fabric care products by Garmet Groom and Murchison-Hume.