Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Five months on, food on board flights

The flight catering units at Calcutta airport have started preparing meals again after more than five months as airlines have resumed serving food on flights.

The Oberoi group’s flight catering unit started loading meals on flights from Sunday, an official of the unit said. Taj Sats Air Catering Ltd, the in-flight catering unit of the Taj group, has started preparing food for passengers again from September 8.

On Sunday, Oberoi Flight Services and Oberoi Airport Services loaded more than 200 boxes of sandwiches and close to 150 packets of pre-booked meals on domestic flights of airlines, including IndiGo and SpiceJet.

At one point, it used to provide 4,000 to 5,000 meals every day, an official said.

The flight catering unit of the Taj group has been providing close to 750 meals since September 8, mainly to Air India flights. On Monday, it provided close to 2,000 meal boxes to Air India flights because the airline operated two big aircraft to Delhi, the catering unit official said.

Before the pandemic, the unit had been provided about 6,000 meals every day, he said

While the Oberoi unit serves hot meals for lunch and dinner, the Taj unit provides snacks that include kathi rolls, patties, cakes and biscuits.

“The bigger meal boxes that contain kathi rolls, along with other items, are for longer flights to cities like Delhi and Mumbai,” the catering unit official said.

The flight catering units became non-functional towards the end of March when commercial planes had stopped flying because of the pandemic. Even after domestic flights and international evacuation flights resumed, the civil aviation ministry hadn’t given permission to serve meals on board because of safety reasons.
15/09/20 Sanjay Mandal/Telegraph
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