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Q and A with MHA President Ozer Balli

QS W AI 2 inn 01 ers 5 A Ins war ide d !

N E W S A N D A N A LY S I S F O R T H E PA S S E N G E R S E R V I C E S E X E C U T I V E

WTCE HAMBURG ISSUE REGIONAL REPORT HONG KONG

Cathay Pacific Group Rebrands Finnair’s local partner LSG Group’s new offices

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NEWREST MARKS 10 YEARS p.

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WORLD’S TOP IN-FLIGHT CATERERS REVEALED p.

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FOOD SERVICE ON EUROSTAR p.


ENERGIZING THE WORLD

Come and visit us at our inspiring

WTCE 5-7 April 2016*

*4A45 & 4A60 Hall A4 | Hamburg Messe und Congress GmbH Messe Platz 1 | 20357 Hamburg, Germany

www.gategroup.com


EDITOR’S LETTER

PAX International 26 Pearl Street, Mississauga, Ontario L5M 1X2, Canada Tel: (1 905) 821-3344 Fax: (1 905) 821-2777 website: www.pax-intl.com

PUBLISHER Aijaz Khan E-mail: aijaz@globalmarketingcom.ca

E D I T O R I A L S TA F F Rick Lundstrom, Editor-in-Chief PAX International 723 Jefferson Street, NE Minneapolis, MN 55413, USA Tel: (1 612) 378-0862 Fax: (1 612) 378-0852 E-mail: rick@pax-intl.com

SEEING THE

Melissa Silva, Editor Tel: (1 905) 821-3344 x21 E-mail: melissa@pax-intl.com Contributors:

PASSENGER EYE TO EYE

Jacqui Davidson, Director, Gastro Cullinary Innovation

n contrast to all the media criticism of the airline travel experience as being a demeaning, slog into a cattle car (I exaggerate not, in my opinion) there seems to be more attention paid to the needs and wants of the individual passenger than ever before. Airlines are doing much more than changing the lexicon and referring to passengers at “guests” or “customers.” Presentations in Hamburg are dedicated to the new definations of hospitality and what it means to a traveler. “Today, we’re increasingly treating the travel experience as a concierge might,” said Mark Allen, Vice President for Business Development and Operations at Air Meals who will be one of the featured presenters on April 4 as the day ends at the Passenger Experience Conference. Our guest columnist, Stathis Keffalonitis takes an even deeper dive into the personalization, by showing us some of the neuroscience behind what passengers do and do not like and what they notice throughout their experience. With the help of some high-tech tools, airlines can help identify what puts a passenger at ease, encourage loyalty and even

A R T D E PA R T M E N T

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see what affects purchase decisions. Airlines already know what can help along inflight sales, and that is incentives. The Alpha LSG OMG! Awards that have been used by charter carriers to motivate crew to sell the airline’s services have been going on for several years, now and have showed tangible results in a passenger’s inflight spend. All these developments did not exist a mere 10 to 15 years go, when commercial aviation was working its way through a series of jarring crises and downturns that has been a constant companion. As this year’s gathering again draws the industry to the city of Hamburg, there is much to be grateful for. It would be naïve to think that good times will last forever. However armed with knowledge and insights gained over the past several years, airlines know their customers better than ever, and will be able to use their experience to carry them through anything that the future may bring. Rick Lundstrom Editor-in-Chief, PAX International

Stathis Kefallonitis, Ph.D Hibah Noor Mary Jane Pittilla Syreeta Tranfield, Event Director, WTCE Simon Ward, CEO, TravelPlus

Jessica Hearn, Art Director E-mail: jessica@globalmarketingcom.ca Sarit Scheer, Layout E-mail: sarit.scheer@gmail.com

ADVERTISING OFFICES Kevin Greene, Advertising Sales Executive Tel: (1 905) 821-3344 x31 E-mail: kevin@pax-intl.com PAX International is published eight times a year (January/February, March/April, May, June/July, September, October/November, December) by PAX International, 26 Pearl Street, Mississauga, Ontario L5M 1X2, Canada. International Distribution. Subscriptions: $200 for one year; $300 for two years; $400 for three years. Art and photographs will not be returned unless accompanied by return postage. The views expressed in this magazine do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher or editor. March/April 2016, Vol. 23, No. 3. Printed in Canada. All rights reserved. Nothing may be reprinted in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher. © PAX International magazine

ISSN 1206-5714 Key title: Pax international

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Contents CATERING PROFILE

16 DIVERSE MILESTONES

43

As the manager/owners of Newrest head into their second decade together, the company has achieved major goals using a business model that shields it against downturns by maintaining a wide range of catering interests

20 QSAI AWARDS

Returning home to Montreal after five years, Medina Quality rolled out the red carpet to honor the world’s top in-flight caterers at the annual QSAI Excellence Awards

REGIONAL REPORT - HONG KONG 24 HARMONY IN HONG KONG

Cathay Pacific celebrates a significant anniversary this year, and with it will be a partner with a new name and an inflight product to reflect a modern, contemporary China

30 FORTUITOUS FINDS

Finnair passengers from Hong Kong will experience the airline’s first tie-in with an Asian restaurant, and they are likely to find it a welcome taste of home

32 SPIRIANT EXPANDS COMPETENCIES IN ASIA-PACIFIC

CATERING DEVELOPMENTS 34 THE GOLDEN STANDARD

ON THE COVER:

Premium service on Cathay Pacific. Photo courtesy Cathay Pacific

Having successfully served the world’s leading airlines for more than three decades, Flying Food Group has raised the bar with an innovative approach to superior, food-safe production in the form of its latest unit, Flying Food IAD

GUEST COLUMNS 38 CREATIVE, ORIGINAL AND SNAZZY

DEPARTMENTS 3

EDITOR’S COLUMN

10

NEWS

13

PEOPLE NEWS

86

WHAT’S HOT

90

ASSOCIATION NEWS

90

CALENDAR

Amenity kits compete for the ultimate seal of passenger approval by Simon Ward

42 THE PASSENGER MINDSET: BRAIN POWER By Stathis Kefallonitis, Ph.D.

COMFORT ITEMS 43 IN THE COMFORT ZONE

Producers of comfort products are developing multi-functional, value-for-money luxury products that help to improve the passenger experience

PASSENGER EXPERIENCE WEEK 48 UNDERSTANDING MILLENNIALS

Companies filling out this years Travel Retail Zone at WTCE have group of young travelers who are quickly taking up half the airline seats

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52 TASTING THE TRENDS

A newcomer to the industry Gastro Culinary Innovation will be bringing its extensive line of sweets and savories to this year’s WTCE

54 PAX EXPERIENCE WEEK PERSPECTIVE

Lower airfares, onboard technology and the rise of premium economy shape the global travel industry

SPECIALTY CATERING 56 HEALTHY, ELEVATED

As passengers become more educated about the foods they eat, airlines have found themselves faced with the task of delivering a more varied inflight offering and are looking to caterers for ripe solutions

WINE AND SPIRITS 62 A SEASONAL UNION

Delta Air Lines’ association with New York’s Union Square Café Group gave its sommelier, Andrea Robinson, the chance to pair wines with seasonal menus for the carrier’s Delta One cabin on several important routes to Europe

66 VINTAGE HOSPITALITY

A year of superior growing seasons and development in packaging along with a vibrant airline industry gives wine companies at this year’s WTCE reason for optimism in the year ahead

DUTY FREE INDUSTRY NEWS 68 HEY, BIG SPENDER!

Group China’s CEO Alexander Glos discusses the Chinese shopper’s spending habits and how i2i is targeting an attractive subset: the repeat traveler

COMPANY PROFILE 72 INNOVATING AT A FAST CLIP

Clip, a new, design-driven player in the aviation supply industry, is showcasing at WTCE a range of innovative, smart and sustainable onboard solutions, from concept to delivery

ANCILLARY REVENUE 74 RETAIL ON THE MOVE

LSG Group has two new fully owned subsidiaries and a popular awards program, all dedicated to growing inflight sales

76 FASHION FLIES

Style is popping up all over Helsinki airspace this spring, with a literal runway fashion and new shopping portal on Finnair

ADVERTISING 80 A BLANK CANVAS

Airlines and companies have long contemplated the potential of reaching passengers through display advertising inflight. And though they have tread carefully, messages in parts of the cabin are showing up in various forms

RAIL CATERING 82 LAKES AND FOREST

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Virgin Trains is catering to the its first class passengers’ desire for premium products from the start, with a selection of locally produced spirits served in one of the UK’s most important points of origin

84 SURPASSING EXPECTATIONS

As Europe’s leading high-speed rail operator, Eurostar ensures it is constantly on point with its food & beverage menus with the help of a French celebrity chef


For over 30 years, WESSCO has specialized in supplying a wide range of products for our airline customers worldwide. From amenities, to passenger comfort, to food & beverage service ware, we design and deliver the items you need to provide an exceptional experience for your passengers.

Come visit us at the World Travel Catering & Onboard Services Expo (WTCE) 2016 in Hamburg from 5th to the 7th of April in Hall A1, Stand 1H50. To set up an appointment with us please email us at info@wessco.net. We look forward to discussing how we can meet your onboard service needs.


NEWS SUPPLIER NEWS

SKYSUPPLY PICKED FOR COMFORT ITEMS ON SWISS Skysupply has been selected by SWISS International as the partner for the development and supply of a new concept of high quality items designed to enhance the airline’s First Class passenger experience. Both, male and female passengers enjoy gender specific bags with a different style, color and content. For the next three years, there will be a male and female bag with a different style each year. “We are delighted to have created a conclusive, stringent concept with attention to detail together with SWISS,” says Wolfgang Bücherl, Managing Director of skysupply. The concept incorporates the Swiss brand Zimmerli’s signature colors of tobacco and sand that can be found throughout the offering. Tobacco and sand are part of a design that plays with countering and complementing the particularities of the male and female amenity bags, which are made of cotton canvas. The German company is also supplying the pajama and slippers. SWISS has chosen a color scheme of Inside the bags, both male and female passengers will sand and tobacco for its comfort items find luxury la Prairie cosmetic items.

American launches designer kit in March American Airlines picked Buzz Products of Australia to develop an amenity kit featuring Cole Haan, 3LAB Skincare, C.O. Bigelow Apothecaries and Clark’s Botanicals. The kits arrived for inflight service in March. This is the first time American Airlines has partnered with a fashion and lifestyle brand to design and create an amenity kit. “American Airlines flyers represent some of the most progressive business people in the world. Cole Haan is one of the most progressive and innovative brands. We could not be more honored to join this partnership of great American brands,” said David Maddocks, Chief Marketing Officer and General Manager of Business Development at Cole Haan. All kits will feature a custom bag designed by Cole Haan, inspired by their pinnacle design and innovation collection, ZerøGrand. Included in all kits are discount codes providing 20% the skincare brand in the kit and $75 towards a future Cole Haan purchase. Each kit includes a toothbrush, toothpaste, eyeshade, socks, and ear plugs. Other amenities vary by kit. The amenity kits will be distributed in four rotations of various colors, ending in March 2017. The first rotation of colors will last four and a half months beginning with the gray, blue and red kits. The newest amenity products for American Airlines from Buzz Products

En Route to bring unique designs to WTCE Hamburg Airline food expert En Route International is bringing another selection of innovative onboard catering ideas to WTCE this year. The company’s team of foodies have pushed the company’s “Design, Deliver, Delight” mantra to the limit to create new dishes, creative packaging and logistical solutions. Over the past year, the group has developed products like Tuscan pizzinis, posh Cornish pasties and Spanish tapas with a twist, all made with authentic ingredients and supplied and delivered in bespoke ovenable packaging. Coming onboard for the first time are cheeky Canapies from Square Pie. Baked in small batches using British Red Tractor meat. Among the flavors are Steak and Ale and Cheese and Onion. The design team has also developed some unique packaging. A colorful, interactive Sky Squad box is aimed at entertaining younger passengers. For adults the company has developed Afternoon Tea and Picnic in the Park boxes. There is also a range of stylish boxes clearly marked for passengers with special diets, such as the Me, My gluten-free selection & Myself. One of En Route’s canny solutions to make onboard service easier is the launch of a video for Vueling Airlines crew. The animated guide gives clear advice on how to store, maintain, heat and serve ambient dishes. En Route has an established global logistics platform that allows them to deliver frozen, chilled and ambient products to more than 70 locations every month. En Route design teams have been expanding the company’s capabilities and expertise in the past year

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NEWS Italian bakers team up for new line of snacks Italian baked good producer Group SOI announced recently that it has signed on with a new strategic partner: Bottoli S.p.A. Bottoli was founded in 1959 in Mantova, one of the most famous Italian provinces for tradition and gastronomy. Bottoli has been working with Group SOI to develop a range of single portioned savory crackers, called “Schiacce”, which means Flat Bread Snacks. “Schiacce”, is available in Cheese, Olive and Barbeque flavors, are produced exclusively with natural ingredients, and are designed as an ideal snack with a glass of wine or cocktails. “The partnership with Bottoli Spa extraordinarily enhances our offering,” explained Mrs. Blasi, Managing Director of Group SOI. “Thanks to our new partner, we are able to ensure to our customer the freshness and the genuineness of 100% made in Italy ambient snacking products in a traditional Italian way.”

Monty’s Bakehouse pastry wins Gulf Food award Longtime airline supplier Monty’s Bakehouse, in partnership with Agthia Group has been awarded the Best New Bakery Award for the “Monty’s Bakehouse Hot Lattice Pastry” at the Gulf Food Awards 2016. The awards were held on February 21 in Dubai as part of the Gulf Food Exhibition. The event is designed to celebrate excellence and innovation across every category of the global food and hospitality industry. On hearing about the company’s success in winning this category, CEO Matt Crane of Monty’s Bakehouse said “Winning this award is a great accolade for Monty’s Bakehouse and the Agthia Group, and is a testament to the whole team involved from the UK and the UAE in launching the Agthia Bakery in Abu Dhabi and our savory manufacturing lines for these products. This recognition confirms the establishment of our manufacturing base in the UAE via our partnership with Agthia which has been a turning point for Monty’s Bakehouse and the result of a tremendous team effort by both our businesses. “We look forward to developing our partnership with the Agthia Group and strengthening our presence in the UAE with additional Monty’s Bakehouse products for the UAE and surround GCC market.”

Barbecue Schiacce from Group SOI

Hot Lattice pastry from Monty’s Bakehouse

Qantas notes Australia Day with new Premium Economy kits Watermark Products has collaborated with Qantas and Country Road to design the airline’s new Premium Economy Kit. “The coming together of these two iconic Australian brands has resulted in a kit that compliments Qantas’s authentic Australian service, offering their premium economy customer both indulgence and functionality,” said a release from Watermark. “Launched on-board in January on Australia Day (the official National Day of Australia) the bag design features Country Road’s signature black and white gingham print and contains all the travel essentials.” Country Road has been designing clothing and housewares for an authentically Australian way of life for more than 40 years. The requirement from Qantas was to improve their current premium economy customer experience, and the resulting amenity product is simple yet chic, and embodies both brands well. “We gave Watermark Products the challenge of elevating our Premium Economy amenity offering. Watermark helped build a strong partnership with Country Road and the amenity kit brings a great combination of style, luxury and functionality to enhance our Premium Economy experience. The collaboration with Country Road compliments our authentic Australian service and sees our continued support of all things Australian,” said Con Athas, Manager Customer Service Experience, International Customer Experience at Qantas.

Travel essentials in black and white gingham on Qantas Premium Economy

www.pax-intl.com  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  11


NEWS AIRLINE NEWS

Air France Top Chef winner for alternative meal order French chef Jean Imbert has created a full meal that can be ordered for Air France Economy and Premium Economy on long-haul flights, as an alternative to the standard menu offered on board on departures from Paris. The menu includes a cold starter with organic quinoa, poached egg and tarragon. The entrée is a warm stew and a fruity fondant dessert. Imbert has revisited certain dishes that were a great success on the TV show as well as other original culinary creations. Le marché de Jean Imbert was on the menu order list from the airline’s website in January 2016 for €21 (US$23) or 7,000 Flying Blue Miles was first served on long haul flights starting April 1. This new menu accompanies Air France’s move upmarket of its long-haul products and services. On board the 777, new Economy and Premium Economy cabins are being phased in. In 2012, Imbert won Season Three of Top Chef on M6 in France with his emblematic dishes such as his fruit salad carpaccio and vegetable bouquet. He has since become one of France’s favorite chefs, well liked by personalities. He is an advocate for sustainable fishing, and spotlights local French producers. On departures from Paris, on long-haul flights in Economy and Premium Economy, Air France offers four a la Carte menus as an alternative to the standard meal: Une Sélection LeNôtre, Océan, Tradition or Italia menus. Le marché de Jean Imbert will also be offered on board, instead of the Italia menu starting April 1. These menus can already be ordered for a price of between €12 and €28 (US$12 and US$31), or 4,000 to 8,500 Flying Blue Miles to nearly all destinations from CDG. Meals are ordered from an Air France call center or ticket office up to 24 hours before departure.

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ASSOCIATION PEOPLE NEWS NEWS

Nijhawan heads Kaelis business in Australasia, Middle East and Africa Inflight products, services and solutions supplier Kaelis has opened a branch office in the United Arab Emirates and named Dilip Nijhawan, CEO for Australasia, Middle East and Africa.

He will be based out the company’s new UAE office. Nijhawan has more than 35 years of experience in the onboard services, catering and hotel industries, most recently as CEO of Emirates Flight Catering. Over his career, he has also held senior management positions in at Emirates, Oman Air, SriLankan Catering and Oberoi Hotels and Resorts. “As CEO Kaelis for Australasia Middle East and Africa, Dilip’s responsibilities span a large footprint, which will fortify the Kaelis brand in its quest of its global positioning in the OBS industry,” said a release from the company.

East will considerably improve support to the local client base, while boosting the growth opportunities for FORMIA in the region. Wendschuh recently joined the FORMIA team and will be based in Dubai. He is an industry expert with more than 20 years of experience in the inflight product sector, holding senior management positions in the last years.

Wendschuh to head FORMIA’s Dubai office

Dilip Nijhawan

FORMIA, the global supplier of inflight amenities has named Philipp Wendschuh as Regional Director of the company’s Middle Eastern subsidiary and sales office in Dubai. With its local presence, FORMIA Middle

Philipp Wendschuh

www.pax-intl.com  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  13


ASSOCIATION PEOPLE NEWS NEWS

Two new executives at Alpha LSG Alpha LSG announced in January that Richard Wood has joined the company as Managing Director at Alpha LSG’s LondonHeathrow business while Paul Gurnell has become UK Sales and Marketing Director. Wood was most recently Site Director at Dairy Crest’s largest UK operation, where he held full profit and loss responsibility for a £300m turnover business and delivered a comprehensive and highly successful turnaround plan. Wood will be responsible for all activities within Alpha LSG’s LondonHeathrow business and will focus on delivering the next phase of its business strategy. Gurnell, who has worked for Unilever, GlaxoSmithKline and most recently Amazon, will be responsible for the development and execution of the company’s UK business development as well as its sales and marketing strategy. Also based at London-Heathrow, he will be working closely with the senior leadership Team to ensure the sales strategy is aligned with operational delivery for commercial viability. He was previously Head of Vendor Man-

Richard Wood

Paul Gurnell

ships for our travel clients. I look forward to working closely with our talented team and the airlines of the world, developing inflight concepts that reflect the changing lifestyles of global business professionals and brandconscious millennial travelers,” commented Bregman. Kazi joins WESSCO after more than 20 years in the entertainment industry, having served both The Walt Disney Company and 20th Century Fox as a marketing strategy and partnership senior executive. Both men will be based out of WESSCO’s head offices in Los Angeles.

agement for one of Amazon’s key business accounts. During his time as Director of Consulting at Kantar Retail, his responsibilities included working with external clients to identify business opportunities through the use of intelligently applied sales data and trend analysis.

WESSCO announces new executive appointments WESSCO International announced in February that Nick Bregman has been promoted as Chief Operating Officer and Nabil Kazi has been appointed as Chief Marketing Officer with the leading provider of airline comfort and amenity programs. Bregman joined WESSCO family 12 years ago, after earning a Bachelor of Science degree at University of Oregon. In his new role as COO, he will continue forming strategic alliances and leveraging his relationships with trendsetters in the entertainment, skincare and fashion worlds to enhance the passenger experience at every level. “WESSCO will continue to lead the way in establishing creative and innovative partner-

Nick Bregman

Nabil Kazi

Tan joins Recaro in Asia

Irene Tan has been appointed General Manager Asia Pacific (APAC) for Recaro Aircraft Seating. “By taking this step, the company is reinforcing its regional competence in order to be even more customer-oriented and with dedicated focus on the customers’ needs in this region,” said a release from the German seatmaker. Tan, will manage the Recaro Aircraft Seating business and operations in the APAC region, and oversee the site in Qingdao, China. Recaro’s APAC Sales Organization headed by René Lux, Vice President of Sales, will be integrated into the new Recaro Hub for the APAC region in Hong Kong and will be reporting directly to Irene Tan. Before joining Recaro Aircraft Seating, Tan was the Regional Director of Marketing and Product Strategy at Panasonic Avionics Corporation. Before that, she had also worked with Singapore Airlines, Dragonair (now Cathay Dragon) and Cathay Pacific Airways. 14  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

Irene Tan


INDUSTRY Q&A: NEWREST Newrest Co-President’s Olivier Sadran (left) and Jonathan Stent-Torriani

DIVERSE MILESTONES As the consortium of managers that owns and manages Newrest head into their second decade together, the company has achieved major goals using a business model that shields it against downturns by maintaining a wide range of catering interests by RICK LUNDSTROM

L

ast November, management and invited guests at Newrest held a low-key celebration marking 10 years as a Management Buyout (MBO) company that brings together managers and employees in a decision-making process that defines goals and performance in a collaborative venture. Today the company is 90.2% owned by its management. A number of other goals, besides 10 years as a company, have been met, and the number of owner-managers has increased by close to tenfold to approximately 400 as Newrest has expanded to 50 countries in nearly every corner of the world. Last year, the company achieved just short of €1 billion (US$1.12 billion) in consolidated sales and more than €1.5 billion in managed turnover (US$1.66 billion). This year, Newrest’s acquisitions and successes have been much closer to its headquarters in Toulouse, France. In February, the company announced it had purchased the French group catering company Appetito SA, which handles food service in healthcare, defense, education and business. At Paris de Gaulle Airport, Newrest gained a new customer in United Airlines, which operates four daily flights from Paris to various cities in the United States. It also secured a lucrative contract for logistics services – sourcing, production, cleaning, loading and offloading – for four trains: the TGV, IDTGV, Intercities and Alleo. The acquisition of Appetito SA gives Newrest access to an institutional catering customer base in Germany, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Canada and France of €30 million (US$33 million). “Group contract catering is one of Newrest’s key development goals in many countries which the group is present,” said Co-Founder and Co-President Olivier Sadran, in the February announcement of the acquisition. “This acquisition will allow us to boost our development strategy in France based on a portfolio of leading clients and our renowned expertise.” All the business is welcome, the company’s Co-President Jonathan Stent-Torriani tells PAX International. However, he insists that it does not mean that Newrest is shifting its focus primarily toward Europe or away from its model of diversity that now involves business that stretches from its home in Europe to Africa, the Americas and the Pacific. “We have had a bit of luck and success in France, specifically in

16  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

Transportation catering along with institutional catering, concessionaries, and work in airports are some of Newrest’s diverse specialities

developing our inflight, train catering and contract catering business, and that is great,” he said. “But the more important thing for us is to follow our development strategy regarding the various branches of catering that we are doing on a worldwide basis.” That diverse approach, that includes transportation catering along with institutional catering, concessionaries, and work in airports and onboard aircraft allows Newrest to usually have at least one segment of its business doing well, when others sectors may be lagging. As the price of oil hovers around US$30 per barrel, customers in the oil, gas and mining sector may be looking to Newrest and other service providers to cut costs and find new solutions. But as oil becomes less expensive, airlines are expanding and spending more for their inflight products. Along with that, countries anxious to link important cities with high-speed rail lines will open up opportunities for Newrest, which has reached one of its goals that it set out at the start: to become the largest rail caterer in the world. That goal has been achieved, said Stent-Torriani, as Newrest expanded its rail business through growth and acquisition to more than US$400 million per year. The platform for rail catering growth was cemented when Newrest acquired Compagnie des Wagons-Lits in 2010, but since then the company has grown dramatically, landing major contracts with SNCF and others in the interim. Now, the


INDUSTRY Q&A: NEWREST company stands on the brink of handling catering for the Haramain High-Speed Rail Project, which is a 450-kilometer rail link between Mecca and Madinah. In the future, pilgrims to the annual Hajj and Umrah will have the chance to travel in what is planned as dozens of trains in a high-speed network will move them to religious experiences that are growing by double digits per year. “High speed trains are becoming a key form of alternate transport for a number of areas in North Africa and the Middle East,” said Stent-Torriani. Though the company is the leading airline caterer in Saudi Arabia and globally has 71 catering units, 44 airport lounges and makes nearly 600,000 meals per day for airline customers, Newrest’s €429.5 (US$479.76) million in sales in the sector represents less than half of the its total business. Diversifying its base of business was one of the company’s goals when Stent-Torriani and his partner Sadran began the company 10 years ago after working together in an airline catering operation called Catair and at Compass Group. Newrest’s rail business is handled out of 17 logistics centers throughout Europe. As well as the SNCF, Lyria, Alleo, Thalys and Eurostar in France, the company also has operations for Via Rail in Canada, OBB in Austria, and Comboios de Portugal in Portugal among others, and Stent-Torriani said the company is keen to expand its reach; and is watching the growth and possibilities of rail travel catering in the United States. North America is not the only region of the world the Newrest will be looking to expand. The company maintains a conservative approach said Stent-Torriani, but he sees opportunities in Asia along

with advancing Newrest’s reach in Central and South America. As an example of the diversity that the company relies on, Newrest recently began working on major catering and hospitality service for mining company Vale in New Caledonia in the southwest Pacific Ocean. Another recent contract has Newrest supplying lunches and dinners to employees of Outremer Telecom in Madagascar, where Newrest already has major operations at the Ambatovy nickel and cobalt mining refinery. “We have five catering sectors,” said Stent-Torriani. “And it has really saved us. In the downturns of the airline industry, there tends to be upturns in the remote site (catering,) rail and even in the institutional catering side, and vice versa, and this diversity, along with our unique employee ownership model has been key to the limited success we have been fortunate to enjoy to date.”

When. Where. What.

Newrest’s rail business is handled out of 17 logistics centers throughout Europe

How.

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Contact us at 770.804.0903 or amigrp.com

18  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016


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QSAI AWARDS 2015

Top onboard caterers take home QSAI Awards for exhibiting excellence in food safety and quality by MELISSA SILVA Returning home to Montreal after five years, Medina Quality rolled out the red carpet to honor the world’s top onboard caterers in the form of its annual QSAI Awards

E

very year, more than 220 catering facilities from over 85 countries wait in anticipation for the annual ceremony presented by a global roster of airlines that participate in the Quality and Safety Alliances

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Onboard Services (QSAI) programme, where quality assurance expert Medina Quality (MQ) announces the world’s top onboard caterers. For the past four years — this year marking the fifth — MQ has hosted the

QSAI Excellence Awards, which are presented by airlines and railway operators that participate in the QSAI programme — a programme managed by MQ and developed in collaboration with its airline clients, which monitors and improves the


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is what we do best. Legacy carrier or low-cost airline; economy, business, or first class; direct or connecting flight; local cuisine or a meal for special religious or dietary needs‌ every company is different, every flight is unique, every one of your passengers deserves our utmost attention. With our broad palette of savoir-faire, committed employees, superb product offers, and premises on four continents, we stand ready to serve you, equipped with the solutions best-suited to your needs.

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ou Design and production:

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QSAI AWARDS 2015 safety and quality of onboard food. Many of the world’s top airlines and railway operators participate in the programme, including: Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge, Air France, Air Tahiti Nui, Aeroflot Russian Airlines, All Nippon Airways, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Korean Air, Singapore Airlines, Virgin Atlantic Airways, and VIA Rail Canada. “Medina Quality designed the QSAI programme to allow airlines to monitor and improve the quality and safety of meals provided by their caterers to ensure they are continuously meeting the standards of their customers,” says Matthew Brown, Operations Manager – CRM of Medina Quality. “The QSAI Excellence Awards recognize the dedication these caterers, airlines and rail operators have towards protecting the health and satisfaction of passengers and crew.” In addition to providing well deserved recognition for caterers’ top marks in food safety and quality audits, and for being leaders in delivering safe, high quality onboard food, the QSAI Excellence Awards also give airlines, rail operators and catering leaders opportunities to network and

This year’s QSAI Excellence Awards Winners

Lionel Murray, General Manager, Air Canada and Gäel Lokossou, Operations Support Manager, Servair on the red carpet at the QSAI Excellence Awards Ceremony

22  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

promote their exemplary performance. Maintaining a global focus, the awards are divided into three geographic regions: Americas, Asia, and Europe/ Middle East/ Africa. A total of nine awards (gold, silver and bronze for each region) along with the coveted Platinum Award for Worldwide Excellence — presented to one exceptional onboard caterer — were handed out by MQ and QSAI participants at this year’s Excellence Awards Ceremony, held at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Montreal on March 2nd. This year’s gala marked a return home after four years of galas held at elite locations around the world. Prior to the ceremony, attendees were exposed to life in wintery Monteal by participating in ice skating at Le Atrium and visiting the Museum of Fine Arts. Before taking their seats for the dinner and ceremony, guests enjoyed a cocktail at the Ritz on the mezzanine. The gold-winning onboard catering facilities for 2015 are: for the Americas, Gate Gourmet - Guayaquil, Ecuador (GYE - José Joaquin de Olmedo International Airport); for Asia, Kansai Onboard

Catering Co. Ltd. – Osaka, Japan (KIX – Kansai International Airport); and for Europe/Middle East/Africa, LSG Sky Chefs – Munich, Germany (MUC – Munich Airport). In addition to receiving the QSAI gold award for Europe/Middle East/Africa, LSG Sky Chefs Munich, Germany was also awarded the coveted QSAI Platinum Award for Worldwide Excellence for the second consecutive year. Not only do the QSAI Awards recognize caterers’ exemplary performance, the Awards also give airlines, railway operators and catering leaders opportunities to showcase their leadership in providing safe, high-quality in-flight food. Looking ahead to next year’s awards, it’s bound to be another tough race to claim the Platinum Worldwide Award along with gold, silver and bronze statues. Although details regarding next year’s event have not yet been unveiled, judging the past five ceremonies, next year’s is sure to garner much anticipation and another elite group of winners. Follow QSAI on Twitter @QSAIAwards

Matthew Brown, Operations Manager, Client Relationship Management for Medina Quality

Oliver Barthelmeh, Vice President Lufthansa Passage Operations & Managing Director and Ramona Sieber, Quality Management, LSG Sky Chefs Munich accepting the first of two awards (EMEA Regional Gold & Worldwide Platinum)


Our brand portfolio includes:


REGIONAL REPORT - HONG KONG

HARMONY IN

Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon are now rebranded with a similar livery.

HONG KONG

Cathay Pacific Airways celebrates a significant anniversary this year, and with it will be a partner with a new name and an inflight product to reflect a modern, contemporary China by RICK LUNDSTROM

A

s Cathay Pacific Airways heads into its 70th year of operation, behind the scenes the stage was being set to make this anniversary year one that sees additions to its fleet, a new modern feel to its operations and a more seamless experience as passengers from Mainland China make their way to Hong Kong. What they will also find is an inflight product that has been taking shape, in some aspects for more than two years. Food service will be handled from a sleek, modern airline catering unit that this year will complete a major transition to increase capacity to have it stand among the largest in the world. The big branding news came at the end of January, when The Cathay Pacific Group announced it would enter the 70th anniversary with a newly rebranded product. The company’s wholly owned sister airline, Dragonair, would be renamed Cathay Dragon. The subsidiary carried more than 7 million passengers last year, most of them from Mainland China to Hong Kong International Airport with a combination of wide-body and narrowbody aircraft. The most noticeable change will be a new livery with a signature Cathay Pacific brush stroke. “This rebranding will sharpen our competitive edge by offering an attractive Cathay-led brand package that carries the assurance of a consistently high-quality 24  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

customer experience,” said the Cathay Pacific’s Chief Executive Ivan Chu, in the January 28 announcement in on the rebranding of Dragonair. However, it takes more than a new livery to sharpen a competitive edge in a region filled with high-quality, service-oriented airlines. Before the announcement, work was underway for the special year ahead that will add a number of elements to the airline’s important food service department that is now handled from one division, located at Cathay City complex and at Cathay Pacific Catering Services. “The brand refresh of Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon was a project which very much encompassed a l l d e p a r t m e nt s within the airlines since the impact of an entirely new design philosophy underpins the entire passenger journey,” said Aaron Claxton, whose office now handles food service for both airlines. “It was far more than about a change in logo, but more

attuned to a defining a new brand experience incorporating signature moments across every touch point.” The airline has also been labeling its branded service for both airlines, stressing separate themes. While Cathay Pacific calls its approach to inflight service “Contemporary Asian,” Cathay Dragon will stress a “Contemporary Chinese” style of service. The airline’s Inspired Dining philosophy has several important pillars, said Claxton. Among the elements presented in its meals is an option for healthy dining, an offering of comfort food and another that promotes its home city of Hong Kong. With the food service departments now operating together, Claxton has the title of Catering for both carriers is now handled at the Cathay City under the direction of Aaron Claxton


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REGIONAL REPORT - HONG KONG Menu design is one of several touch points that have been revamped by Cathay Pacific

Head of Catering for the Inflight Service Department. He works closely with a former Dragonair colleague, Kim Chong who has the title of Inflight Catering Manager. To help the process along, the airline hired a New Zealand company, called Eight Partners. In a program that stretched over

two years, among the first products of the collaboration with the design team was a new tray setting for the airline’s Economy and Premium Economy service. What resulted was a tray service that relied less on disposable products and “compliments the refreshed Cathay brand and its values of smart and refined whilst also being not over complicated.” The other touch point that has since undergone revamping are products that the passengers handle in every flight, notably the menu cards in First Class and Business Class. The new First Class product has a bamboo backing, while red stitching has been added to the Business Class menus. Claxton calls the additions to the menu

a “unique, subtle and elegant” change to the service. However, it appears much of the changes passengers will see and experience will be taking place in the year ahead as the airlines takes delivery of the first 12 of its order of 48 A350s in the -900 and -1000 series. This year, Cathay Pacific adds service to Madrid in June and London Gatwick in September. With the new routes, additional frequencies and new aircraft, Claxton said the airline is on track to grow from 4% to 5% in 2016.

CPSC on growth track All may appear complete and normal on the outside of Cathay Pacific Catering Services (CPSC), which dominates the catering operations at Hong Kong International Airport. But over the next year, much will be taking place behind the doors of the massive unit that is attracting attention of airlines wanting to see some of the modern features that will be no doubt a part of airline catering units around the world. Cathay Pacific Airways has the massive task of coordinating its worldwide food service with 106 airline-catering units in its destination cities, while CPSC forms

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26  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016


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REGIONAL REPORT - HONG KONG

Automated traysetting at Cathay Pacific Catering Services

the backbone of the airline’s food service. As improvements are finished, the unit in Hong Kong will have a more segregated operation, separating Cathay Pacific Airways from the unit’s interline customers. New washing machines will be added and additional capacity will bring CPSC from its present peak of 100,000 meals per day to 140,000. Among the automation in the unit are machines for making omelets, a titling braising machine and a state of the art automatic tray setting mechanism. The airline stresses the products not only increase efficiency, but help maintain quality control and extremely high hygiene standards. Additional high-loaders and other equipment will be part of CPSC by the end of this year. “We are really excited about it and we are working on our research and development capability and building a separate team there,” said Claxton. CPSC sources products from more than 300 suppliers. Some are as far away as the United Kingdom where it gets is pork from Dingley Deli, a small farming operation. The unit is also committed to reducing waste and making use of its unused food products from inbound flights. Unused food and beverages that have not reached expiration dates are often donated to a local food bank. CPSC dominates a catering environment in Hong Kong that includes units from both LSG Sky Chefs (owned 30% by CPSC) and Gate Gourmet. Claxton said the three units maintain a balance in business, with each having a primary carrier as a customer. Cathay Dragon will continue to have its meals catered by LSG Sky Chefs, while Gate Gourmet has a dominant customer in Hong Kong Airlines. 28  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

The year ahead In 2016, Claxton said Cathay Pacific Airways would be focusing much of its attention to its beverage service in two important ways. Recently joining the airline is Master of Wine Debra Meiburg. The Californian, who lives in Hong Kong will have the task of approaching wine pairing with the airline’s menu and working with the Cathay Pacific wine panel. Cathay Pacific plans to also continue its association with the Mandarin Hotel Group it launched in late 2014. In 2015, the airline tapped the services of Executive Chef Uwe Opocensky, from the Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong, and Executive Chef and Culinary Director Thierry Marx, from the Mandarin Oriental, Paris. In February, passengers traveling from Hong Kong to Paris and New York to Hong Kong were

Unused fresh products ready for shipping to a Hong Kong food bank

able to enjoy a selection of dishes created by Executive Chef Uwe Opocensky and Executive Chef Christian Pratsch, from the Mandarin Oriental, New York, respectively. Among the highlights of the first wave of menus was a full-bodied consommé with a specially prepared tea bag of dried flower petals and gold flake, created by Hong Kong’s Opocensky. Paris-based Marx, one of the most celebrated chefs in France, who excels at giving modern and classical French cuisine a twist, offers a traditional presse of chicken, mushrooms and foie gras, delicately infused with a hint of five spices. New York’s Chef Christian Pratsch developed a soup of slow-roasted tomatoes with miniature grilled cheese sandwiches. The airline will also be adding expertise in the form of healthy menus. The other significant development will be distinctly Chinese. The Cathay Pacific Group plans an international advertising campaign to announce the rebranding. The first of the rebranded Cathay Dragon aircraft bearing the new logo, an A330-300 is scheduled to take to the air in April of this year. In the announcement of the new logo and service, Cathay Dragon CEO Algernon Yau stressed specifically the importance of the inflight food product. “We have the same dedicated team continuing to offer their friendly and caring service style,” he said We will also continue to build on our experience and understanding of what our passengers like and treasure, such as specialty Chinese and Asian dishes, as well as popular local Hong Kong snacks.”


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www.pax-intl.com  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  29


REGIONAL REPORT - HONG KONG

A FORTUITOUS FIND

A few of the menu items Sorsa developed for Finnair in the airline’s signature tableware from Marimekko

Finnair passengers from Hong Kong will experience the airline’s first tie-in with an Asian restaurant, and they are likely to find it a welcome taste of home by RICK LUNDSTROM

F

innair flight number 070 may leave Hong Kong International Airport after midnight for its 10-hour trip to Helsinki, but Business Class Finnish passengers who are longing for a taste of home after a long business trip or holiday, might find it a good idea to stay awake a few more hours. In February of this year, the airline announced its first partnership with an Asian restaurant. However, the Asian restaurant happens to also be the only Nordic-themed restaurant in the teeming city or, for that matter, the entire Pearl River Delta. FINDS is located in Luxe Manor Hotel in the Tsim Sha Tsui region of Kowloon in Hong Kong. It was there that Finnair Head of Inflight Service Maarit Keränen met with chef Jaakko Sorsa to talk Scandinavian cuisine and later work with chefs and staff at Cathay Pacific Catering Services to develop a selection of “Finnish Tradition” meals featuring down-home root vegetables such as porcinis, morels, carrots and potatoes. The vegetables are teamed with Norwegian salmon (flown in on Finnair cargo) and meatballs. Other enhancements include Scandinavian lingonberries, yellow beetroot and apples. FINDS stands for the five Scandinavian countries of Finland, Iceland, Norway, Denmark and Sweden. Since the restaurant opened in 2004 originally in the Lan Kwai

30  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

Fong area of Hong Kong, it has received its chefs from top Finnish restaurants, creating a share of media coverage and in March of 2010, series of signature menus for flights departing relocated to the luxury boutique Luxe Manor out of Finland. Hotel. Since then, the restaurant specializes “With this cooperation, we want to honor in entrée and appetizers featuring many well- our roots,” said Keränen, in the February known Scandinavian techniques including announcement of the new work with FINDS. smoking, curing and pickling. Among its “And bring the best of Nordic flavors to the most recent awards was the Best European customers out of our Hong Kong route. Even Restaurant of Restaurant Week 2015. Also if the majority of our customers flying from last year, Sorsa received the Summer Foodie Hong Kong are connecting to Finnair’s broad Forks 2015 Chef of the Year. The restaurant network of around 70 destinations in Europe, is regularly featured in publications around they can enjoy a taste of Finland on board.” Hong Kong. For Finnair, the collaboration with the Chef Jakko Sorsa of FINDS restaurant and Sorsa was worked out in the restaurant of the Luxe Hotel kitchens of Cathay Pacific Catering with an in Hong Kong initial meeting of the airline, staff at the unit and Sorsa. Spearheading the efforts and the caterer’s point of view was Cathay Pacific Catering Sous Chef Jessica Wong, who worked with the Sorsa to develop the menus. Later, Sorsa, Keränen and others returned to the unit to taste the menu items prepared by the staff at Cathay Pacific Catering. “The taste and look and texture was right there,” said Keränen. “The catering company were professionals and you could see the excitement and they were learning something new about the Nordic kitchen.” But the work with FINDS is not the first chef collaboration that Finnair has undertaken. In 2013, the airline began seeking out


REGIONAL REPORT - HONG KONG

SPIRIANT EXPANDS COMPETENCIES IN ASIA-PACIFIC

S

At the ribbon-cutting for the new SPIRIANT office in Hong Kong are, left to right: Alexander Spahn, Managing Director SPIRIANT; Angie Fung, who handles global amenity kits; H.K. Cheung, Regional Chief Operating Officer Asia/Pacific; and Egon Linde, Head of Regional Procurement and Logstics

PIRIANT, LSG Group’s equipment design and procurement subsidiary, has opened a new office in Hong Kong. The SPIRIANT Asia-Pacific team will focus on two major areas: sourcing onboard equipment, ranging from technical items to comfort items from the highly diverse supplier base in the region. The office will also function as SPIRIANT’s worldwide competence center for amenity kits, including branded and non-branded amenity bags and the items contained within them. “This move ensures that our customers benefit from a one-stopshop solution provider, assisting them through the entire process of

32  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

creative and innovative designs to high quality procurement and logistic services,” said Alexander Spahn, Managing Director SPIRIANT. The newly built office houses more than 40 employees with expertise in design, sales, procurement and logistics working to support SPIRIANT’s overall growth strategy while bringing about efficiency and speed in its daily business. Since the official launch of the SPIRIANT brand in 2013 the company has been successfully pursuing a global expansion strategy. Teams have so far been installed in Dubai, Istanbul, Sao Paulo and Hong Kong in addition to the company’s long-established home base near Frankfurt, Germany.


CATERING DEVELOPMENTS

Docks with uplift Flying Food Group catering trucks at Flying Food IAD

THE GOLDEN STANDARD

Having successfully served the world’s leading airlines for more than three decades, Flying Food Group has raised the bar with an innovative approach to superior, foodsafe production in the form of its latest unit, Flying Food IAD by MELISSA SILVA

I

n December of last year, Virgin Atlantic Airways inaugurated Flying Food IAD (FFG IAD) — Flying Food Group’s (FGG) brand new catering unit located less than five miles and about a fiveminute drive from Dulles International Airport in Washington D.C. — with the airline’s flight to London Heathrow. Flying Food IAD joins the caterer’s group of 22 facilities stretching from Honolulu to New York City, and represents a new generation of kitchens. Meeting the stringent Global Food Safety and Quality (GFSI) design criteria — the industry’s toughest safety markers — Flying Food IAD contains over 50,000 square feet of space and 12-plus shipping bays, with room to grow. Fully prepared to service retail customers in addition to the airline customers it currently caters, Flying Food IAD houses efficient production systems and traffic patterns, which were designed as an outcome of the large-scale caterer’s 30-plus years of successfully serving industry customers. “Our new IAD kitchen has been carefully engineered for maximum efficiency and also to meet demanding Global Food Safety and Quality Standards (GFSI),” says Nicolas Rondeau, Flying Food Group Executive Vice President, Airline Sales. “FFG IAD offers 50,000 square feet of upgraded space, with over a dozen shipping bays. The kitchen’s ground-up redesign reflects the latest and most innovative approaches to superior, food-safe production,” he adds. “FFG has over 70 premier airline customers, plus global retail partners. We are adept at optimizing efficiency and quality. All the best practices principles have been applied at IAD.” Flying Food service for Virgin Atlantic now includes: daily Virgin Atlantic flights from Washington Dulles to London Heathrow; daily flights from Newark Liberty Airport; Miami International Airport and Kennedy International Airport to London Heathrow; and three to five daily flights from Orlando to London Gatwick and other locations. At each location, Virgin Atlantic service is hitting every single marker, Rondeau tells PAX International.

A new industry standard A few months after the kitchen’s opening in December, things are going well at Flying Food IAD. Since providing its launch customer Virgin Atlantic with daily service to London Heathrow, Rondeau 34  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

The distribution station at Flying Food IAD

says other leading carriers are “waiting in the wings,” as the new facility holds high hopes and promising outcomes. “The carefully designed traffic patterns in this from-the-ground build-out facility assure forward-only production flow that streamlines the process and prevents cross-contamination,” he adds. In addition to strategic production traffic flow, IAD’s system utilizes a multi-pass high hygiene refrigerated air handler, creating overpressure flow from high care production. This creates positive airflow, reducing airborne environmental risks in assembly areas. What’s more, the kitchen features parallel preparation-cook-wash tracks that efficiently separate Halal from non-Halal production. Lastly, employee entry to production areas is managed via turnstilecontrolled hand-and-footwear sanitizing stations, ensuring the highest levels of cleanliness. It comes as no surprise then that FFG has attained global prominence, a status cemented by successfully serving the world’s leading airlines for over three decades. “IAD provided FFG with the opportunity to implement all we have learned, and then apply advanced approaches,” explains Rondeau. “We are circling back to our network of kitchens with input and results. Every one of our kitchens operates effectively in successfully meeting and exceeding customer and industry standards.” With an ample amount of space and shipping bays, IAD has exceptional future capacity and is fully equipped to meet a wide range of future needs. Since the kitchen is equipped to service retail customers in addition to airlines, FGG has the capacity to grow the IAD family to include


CATERING DEVELOPMENTS - FLYING FOOD GROUP retail customers, although such endeavor is not on the company’s near horizon. “Servicing retail customers is fully possible because IAD’s construction respects global food safety design standards — ‘the gold standard’ of retail production,” says Rondeau. In terms of culinary procedures, all FFG kitchens take pride in expertly handling its customers’ requests. For example, FFG provides Halal meals for customers at other kitchens to ensure full production integrity. “At IAD, we translated this experience and emphasis into parallel production tracks — one for Halal and one for non-Halal,” explains Rondeau. “But at all kitchens, we meet and exceed our customers’ expectations for protected Halal production.”

Award-winning service FFG service and quality continue to earn awards from customers. “It is a tremendous accomplishment and tribute when a customer singles us out for a performance award,” Rondeau says. “This honor indicates that we are going beyond just fulfilling our contractual obligations. Each award signals to the entire industry that our service and quality stand out from the competition in the eyes of our valued customers,” he adds. Rondeau says these awards inspire FFG management and staff to work even harder, both to justify customer confidence, and to continue earning awards in the future. When it comes specifically to IAD, FFG plans to do what it does best — continue to offer awardwinning service and cuisine produced in a cutting-edge facility in a new market. “IAD is a global destination welcoming the world to our nation’s capital,” adds Rondeau. “We are proud to be offering FFG quality service at this outstanding new location!”

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Flying Food IAD’s sleek hot kitchen

FFG was presented with the following awards in 2015: • PAX International Magazine Readership Award – Caterer of the Year – The Americas • Hainan Airlines – FFG ORD – Outstanding Catering Company – American Market • EVA Air – FFG SEA – Gold First Place Award, Long Haul Caterers • Qatar Airways – FFG ORD – Best Quality Improvement Caterer • Qatar Airways – FFG JFK – Best North & Latin America Caterer • ANA/All-Nippon-Airways – FFG SEA – Best Caterer Long Haul • Philippine Airlines – FFG HNL – First Runner-Up, Best Airline Caterer, USA/Canada/Australia/ Europe • Asiana Airlines – FFG SEA – Best Performance (USA)


TRAVELPLUS Simon Ward

CREATIVE, ORIGINAL AND SNAZZY Amenity kits compete for the ultimate seal of passenger approval by SIMON WARD CEO TRAVELPLUS

A

s the entries started to arrive at TravelPlus offices during November, and into early December, it started to become evident that, once again, the task for the judges was going to be tougher than previous years. The 2015 Awards received more than 100 entries, split across 14 categories from more than 40 of the world’s airlines, a clear endorsement that the TravelPlus Awards are the most prestigious and coveted in the Onboard Hospitality Sector. Judging began in earnest in early February, when a panel of frequent flyers were assembled and split into category focus groups dependent upon their travel profile, and an adjudicator for each group was selected. Let Judging commence! I did not envy their task, this year’s entries were certainly some of the most original, creative and trendsetting that we have seen over the past six years. Within the First and Business Class bags there were a number of new brands entering the market, for example Aquascutum, the UK based luxury clothing manufacturer and retailer being introduced onboard Aeromexico. Aquascutum was a firm favourite with political figures including Prime Mister John Major and Baroness Thatcher during the 1980’s.

Another Swiss company, Harmony of gategroup made this kit for Business Class Europe and Africa for SWISS International

Etihad Airways has teamed up with the stylish Luxe City Guides introducing a range of limited edition six mini guides for its Business Class guests. Whilst All Nippon Airways introduce a new iconic Cosmolite design hard case from Samsonite for its First Class passenger. Time will tell if it will rival the much loved, and highly collectable Rimowa Case. New cosmetic companies also entered the market with Scaramouche+Fandango, the British luxury skincare company, teaming up with Etihad. The private label coconutscented skincare brand Lōli’i, appears in the new Hawaiian Airlines kit. From what we have seen airlines are now increasingly starting to pamper their longhaul passengers, and this has been reflected in the growth of entries into these categories. The economy kits are also getting a makeover. Hawaiian Airlines commissioned Manuheali’i to design an exclusive pattern for their kit, whilst the likes of Herschel, Chopard, and Institut Karite brand kits are gifted to passengers across other airlines. Turkish Airlines has gone one step further, designing different, but complimentary kits for their outbound and inbound flights, including a pair of high quality slippers in each for their guest’s convenience. With an array of stylish, chic and snazzy

Asian company Formia developed Aeromexico’s kit for Business Class in the Americas

38  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

This elegant look is for First Class female passengers on Saudi Arabian Airlines

This is Formia’s developed bag for Turkish Airlines Premium Economy Inbound

ANA tapped Formia for its First Class bag

A company called Anaik made a Business Class offering for La Compagnie


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AK Service developed this Business Class kit for Aeroflot in Europe and Africa

Buzz Products of Australia developed written material and kit bag for Etihad Airways

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40  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

bags in a multitude of colors, fabrics and forms across the First, Business and Economy categories the judges faced a challenging but exciting task in selecting the best from their perspective as passengers. For a second year running we received a number of kits designed for the senior corporate or luxury private jet customer. The bags ooze class, and are made from high quality genuine leather with a touch of sophistication with branded linings. The judges felt that it was unfair to compare these kits with other First Class entries, and decided that a new category be added for 2015 for the Best Private Jet Amenity Bag. Airlines are not forgetting their young travellers. Both categories were well supported in 2015. Most of the bags can be used by the children long after the flight, doubling as shoulder bags or back packs, to mini iPad case, school pencil case or bike bag. All are designed in bright colors, and there was even one that glowed in the dark! A clear trend is to partner with global brands, this year we saw entries branded with Disney and Hasbro Gaming. Qatar Airways is inspiring their young flyers with kits inspired by Monopoly, Twister and Guess Who. Singapore Airlines collaborating with Disney brand Star Wars and Disney Princess Saudi Arabian Airlines was quick to jump on the success of Pixar’s latest animation, Inside Out. The film itself is as bizarre, imaginative and authentically psychedelic as anything produced in mainstream animation, and the Saudi Arabian kit mimics this. Gifting young travellers with a glow in the dark bag and character eye mask, with all the content branded and portraying the film’s much loved characters. We also had a number of new suppliers submit entries for the first time. Anaik, part of Casaque group based in Paris with the new amenity kit design for La Copagnie, Europro S.A, a company specializing in cosmetics, retail and FMCG, which recently entered the airline sector and ANA Trading, based in Japan bringing an innovative hard case inspired by Samsonite It was also interesting to see the number of entries direct from airlines increase, which we believe to be a direct endorsement of the importance our Awards. The airline business is fast becoming an important outlet for global brands and cosmetic companies as a way to get their products into the hands of their target clientele. By gaining access to airline passengers, they are creating a base of potential customers who have expendable income, and a like for the little luxuries life has to offer. TravelPlus Media have also had a busy year, and are excited to launch ‘AMENITIES’, a new online library, providing an in-depth look at the world of amenity kits. The AMENITIES database will provide an insight into the passenger’s viewpoint on the kits they receive, together with high quality photographs of kits from the last decade, and will be an invaluable source of data to encourage analysis and research for the next generation of airline amenity kits www.travelplusamenites.com In addition to this, during the third quarter of 2015 TravelPlus Media established a new division - TravelPlus Insight, with the key aim of bringing a new layer of independent insight to the passenger experience market for the first time. TravelPlus Insight helps companies deliver a world-class


TRAVELPLUS

This bag was made by Buzz Products for children under six years old for Singapore Airlines

customer experience and achieve positive financial results. The company combines more than 10 years of rich unparalleled experience garnered from customer research, a wealth of industry expertise and reputation as

Children over six years old enjoy the characters on this Qatar Airways kit developed by Buzz Products

a trusted and recognized brand in consumer ratings In January 2016 TravelPlus Insight sent an online survey to all the global airlines to gain an insight into what they considered important in the world of amenity kits. The response was encouraging, and an initial analysis of the results identified that airlines are frequently refreshing or introducing new kits in most classes of travel every 12 months. With 25% replacing their First Class every three months and 75% doing the same in Premium Economy class.

Children under six on Air Astana get this kit supplied by Buzz Products

We also asked if they anticipated the investment on amenity kits to change over the next 24 months. Thirty percent stated that their spend would likely increase, with the largest increase being in Business Class amenities. Interestingly, the majority of those asked stated that their investment would remain same. It has been an interesting 12 months for TravelPlus Media, and we are looking forward to the future, and continuing to be the leading voice in the world of amenity kits. We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all who have supported the Awards.

Children over six on Saudi Arabian airlines get this stylish bag by Buzz Products

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BOOTH #1J38 in Hall A1 J. Hemmer Director, On-Board Services 571.435.4057

jhemmer@cuisinesolutions.com

Bhasker Raghav Business Development Manager On-Board Services On 571.484.8649 braghav@cuisinesolutions.com

www.pax-intl.com  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  41


GUEST ASSOCIATION COLUMN NEWS : STATHIS KEFALLONITIS

THE PASSENGER MINDSET: BRAIN POWER The goal: Airlines would love to be able to find out what passengers think during the entire passenger journey. Although this may have seemed a long lost dream, it is now becoming a reality with the help of neuroscience by STATHIS KEFALLONITIS, PH.D.

P

assengers seek characteristics that relate to their existing beliefs and attitudes. At the same time, they are attracted to innovative product characteristics. An airline product that raises passenger attention is more likely to get noticed. This is because we need a brief period to understand and decode the projected meaning of the product. How passengers learn and interact is quite as important as to what they learn when in contact with an airline and its personnel. Neuroscience looks into the ways that the human brain works and how learning occurs. Neuroscience, although primarily developed and applied in the fields of medical and psychology research the last few years, has entered the business arena and the air transport industry. Neuroscience can be freely defined as the study of the human neurosystem. It often incorporates elements of psychology, physiology, philosophy, engineering and product design to physics and marketing.

The role of neuromarketing as a catalyst: Neuromarketing in the air transport industry looks into identifying trends and insights based on different age group characteristics. Insights provided can be summed up in: (a) what passengers do and do not and (b) what passengers really pay attention to. Picture 1. Shows what passengers actually see when they look at the Lufthansa logo. The warmer color suggests greater eye gage and focus. This technique is rather important if airlines want to identify which features or attributes passengers prefer. It eliminates surprises, product rejection, pullouts or having to redesign a product or service. Furthermore, it reduces irregularities and helps to save resources. Passengers connect better with specific airline product features than abstract ideas. They learn better with the use of visual and verbal cues rather than freethinking. The use of neuromarketing techniques may employ eye trackers to show movement and eye positioning regarding the development and design of airline products and interfaces. Other popular devices may include galvanic skin response (GSR) units that measure excitement, heart rate and other noticeable changes, to electroencephalography (EEG) units that measure brain activity and responses among others. Most of these methods are non-invasive and are used to understand

A heatmap of Lufthansa’s logo.

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A heatmap of an LSG Sky Chefs meal showing areas that passengers viewed the most

how passengers think, make decisions and react to various airline concepts. Airlines can use these techniques to streamline product development, test prototypes (such as a new meal seen in Picture 2) or new concepts before they even reach passengers. Neuromarketing techniques are not here to replace traditional marketing or product development strategies, but to enrich them. Traditional methods of collecting passenger response data are not specific enough to identify consumer emotions and provide details about the thinking process. After all, the key to a sustainable airline sensory experience lies in the strength of inspiring, empowering and connecting with passengers. The methods used by neuromarketing experts can help airlines create consistent passenger memories by identifying elements of the passenger journey that passengers like. This is one way to keep memories fresh and create rich experiences by emphasizing elements that passengers notice and follow. Emotional information is recalled much more easily and drives our likes or dislikes. Passenger emotional ease, affects purchase intentions and therefore encourages loyalty. Airline brands that generate strong sensory emotions strengthen the emotional bond with passengers. It is anticipated that neuroscience will have a tremendous impact on the development and review of the passenger product. Editor’s Note: For more information, please attend Stathis’ presentation on Tuesday April 5 at the Taste of Travel Theatre in Hall A1 1B35. This presentation will take place as part of the World Travel Catering and Onboard Services EXPO 2016 in Hamburg. Stathis Kefallonitis, is Founder & President at branding.aero


ASSOCIATION COMFORT ITEMS NEWS

IN THE

COMFORT ZONE I

Producers of comfort products are developing multifunctional, value-for-money luxury products that help to improve the passenger experience by MARY JANE PITTILLA

nnovation and creativity are rife in the comfort items sector, as the leading suppliers endeavor to meet the challenging demands of airlines for items boasting form and function — at a price they can afford.

4Inflight International Limited Shanghai-based 4Inflight International Limited offers a wide range of comfort items, such as amenity kits, blankets, pillows, slippers and pajamas. New product developments include a sleep suit that looks like loungewear, and an outer pouch can be re-used as laptop sleeve. Also new is a U-shaped neck pillow made of memory foam that is compressible, and suitable for traveling. In terms of buying trends, 4Inflight has observed that airlines are always seeking innovative products. They are paying more attention to the function of products, and seek multi-functional items. Airline customers want to save their budget but with no compromise on services, according to the firm.

AVID Airline Products US-based AVID Airline Products has been providing comfort items to the commercial airline industry since 1961. The firm sells a full assortment that includes amenity kits for both sexes and children, RON kits, blankets, duvets, pillows, pillow covers, headrest covers, and sleep suits. “AVID has expanded its assortment of value-priced luxury products that really focuses on the passenger experience,” says President/CEO Michael Twist. “We’ve signed agreements with consumer branded cosmetic companies whose image aligns well with our domestic and international clientele. We’ve gone outside the traditional airline sourcing network to bring unique, differentiated product into the cabin space.”

Functional and elegant matching products from 4inflight

AVID Airline products comfort items are often sourced outside traditional networks

In terms of buying trends, Twist says airlines are creating new passenger segments on their aircraft. “There’s no longer just First, Business, and Economy. There are now sub-categories of the three traditional classes and the airlines are buying to fit the needs and segmentation. We see an increase in sell-onboard products, particularly in the ear bud category. This allows the airline the ability to create a new profit center while providing the passenger a better quality sound experience.” AVID is using more sustainable materials in its packaging and trying to incorporate green material in the products. However, Twist says that the cost of sustainable products hasn’t dropped to the level of traditional materials, so the acceptance hasn’t been as rapid as expected. “The desire is there but the budget isn’t… yet.” Twist notes that there is a willingness among airlines to look at products and purchases based on value and quality, and not just price, and to spend in a controlled, reasonable way. “Cost has always been a consideration but it doesn’t seem to be taking the pole position in the decision-making process. Low oil prices and higher profits have had an influence, for sure,” he says. Twist believes that the passenger experience is key. “The passenger experience is something that takes a front seat in the development of our product offerings. We spend a lot of time

Bayart Innovations’ Business Class amenity pouches

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COMFORT ITEMS John Horsfall & Sons

Global Inflight Products assortment goes hand in hand with lie-flat seats

evaluating the flyer, the airline environment, user interface, and inflight logistics to develop products for all constituents… There’s no reason not to exceed the expectations of the passenger flying toward the back of the plane.”

Bayart Innovations Bayart Innovations, headquartered in France, specializes in supplying high quality airline items including amenity kits, blankets, linen, children’s gifts and tableware. The company has designed a new collection of travel pouches, offered in trendy materials and fabrics. Bayart has noticed the more intensive use of eco-friendly materials, such as recycled PET, on the blankets and amenity kits purchased by airlines. “The airline customers tend to prefer amenity kits to be collectible, in terms of shape, materials, or patterns,” the company said.

Global Inflight Products Redmond, Washington-based Global Inflight Products offers a full range of comfort items, including blankets, pillows, slippers, sleepwear, comfort kits and amenity bags. “Upscale, luxurious comfort items are definitely trending with airline customers,” notes CEO Lisa W. Benzaoui. “Inflight service with lie-flat seats is increasingly popular within the airlines’ premium classes.” From inexpensive disposable fleece to woven polyester, acrylic and modacrylic blankets to VIP down comforters and quilts, Global Inflight Products designs and manufactures attractive onboard textiles to enhance the passengers’ experience. The firm offers a variety of different blankets, including: disposable fleece, which is ultra-lightweight with over lock stitch edges, and available in any color or size; and rotable (washable) fleece, which is described as soft, warm and cozy. Options include doublesided, anti-pill, custom stitching, embroidery, printing and trim. Polyester, acrylic, modacrylic and microfiber woven blankets are all anti-static blankets in woven material with an upscale look featuring woven-in custom logos or patterns. Global Inflight Products can create any color combination, size and style. “Our duvets and comforters are the height of luxury. The fill can be goose down or synthetic, and any color, weight and size,” says Benzaoui, adding that other materials used include wool, cotton, linen and silk.

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John Horsfall & Sons, which is exhibiting at WTCE Hamburg (stand 1F 58), supplies creative comfort items to enrich the passenger experience and enhance the airline’s brand. The UK-based company provides a wide range of comfort items to suit all budgets, including blankets, bedding, mattresses, pillows, decorative cushions and sleep suits. These products are made bespoke for each airline client from a selection of fabrics such as lambs wool, polyester jacquards, woven modacrylic, polyester fleece, prints, microplush, faux suede and peachskin. The firm has developed a range of textured fabrics and added printed designs and decorative features to its products, aiming to offer passengers an interactive experience with the airline brand, the company said. Recycled fibers, including fleece blankets made from waste plastic bottles, and duvets filled with recycled polyester fibres, also form part of the offering. Also in the portfolio are dual-purpose products such as a hooded mattress pad. This neat, space-saving design looks like a stylish bolster cushion, and opens up into a comfortable, fulllength mattress. Regarding buying trends, John Horsfall & Sons has seen a strong trend for tactile, inviting fabrics reminiscent of the comfort of home, or a boutique hotel. “The challenge for us is to achieve this, while keeping the practical, durable attributes of the product,” says Business Development Manager Ellie Parkes. Another key focus is for sustainability across all product areas. Recycled and low-impact fibres are a great way of ensuring a level of sustainability in the supply chain, using fleece blankets made from plastic bottles, or recycled hollow fibre fill, rather than virgin fibres, or upgrading to an organic cotton or bamboo fabric. “Airline budgets are tight, but we always consider the overall cost of ownership of the product,” Parkes says. “From a cost point of view it may seem counterintuitive, but in many cases buying better means buying less. Long term its better value, and better for the environment. Blankets, bedding and linens which last longer and wash more easily cut down on waste and over time can save money, too.” John Horsfall & Sons is one the longest-serving suppliers of airline textiles worldwide, having worked with major international carriers since the early 1970s. A cascade of soft fabric in several materials from John Horsfall & Sons


COMFORT ITEMS “Design and product development are backed up with the experience and infrastructure to make the procurement, delivery and re-order process run as smoothly as possible for our clients,” says Parkes.

Mills Textiles As a leading supplier of inflight comfort items, Mills Textiles offers a full suite of comfort items for First, Business and Economy Class, which include slippers, blankets, pillows, pillow covers, duvets, duvet covers, comforters, pajamas/sleep suits, socks, robes, shower caps, vanity kits, and eye masks. It also sells lounge comfort items. Focusing on innovation, the UK-based company has introduced a comforter/duvet that is knitted on one side with shepherd fleece (artificial wool) on the other. “This will be the height of luxury,” enthuses Mills Textiles Head Global Tim Morris. Airline customers are increasingly interested in eco-friendly and recycled mater i a l pro du c t s – an d i n d e e d eco-friendly manufacturing. “Typically an ecofriendly product may cost more, so the onus is on us to increase its performance criteria to make it more durable during launderMills Textiles sees many airlines aiming to increase ing to give the a sense of added value among their passengers airline a longer lasting and thus more cost-effective product,” says Morris. “Physical loading space onboard is also a primary area to address – the products cannot be too bulky.” There is a drive among airlines to increase passenger perceived added value to the inflight offering and Morris thinks budgets are a little more robust than they have been in the last few years. However, he cautions: “This is by no means across all carriers, as we are finding a good number of customers still looking to trim budget. It is still one of the best feelings when, through our expert knowledge and experience, we are able to develop a product for a new customer that both improves upon the performance of the product it replaces and also saves money.” In a fresh development, Mills Textiles offers customers a bespoke factory-direct design function for textile and comfort product supply. Morris explains: “For direct factory supplies, this is something of a novel approach as factory direct usually means low cost, and thus there is no margin for design. We have our own in-house design team for our retail business who now design airline textiles and comfort products; however, the cost of the design team is covered by the retail business. “We’ve recently been helping a major U.S. carrier with design ideas for duvets, comforters and blankets. We are passionate about making a difference to the passenger. A long haul flight might be the trip of a life time for somebody and they may have saved for

a long time to buy their ticket, so we have a duty of care to help make those people’s comfort experiences as fulfilling as possible.”

WESSCO International WESSCO provides a wide range of comfort items to its airline clients including American Airlines, Etihad Airways, and Virgin America. The U.S. company supplies American Airlines with a pillow, pillowcase and slippers for premium cabins. The pillowcase features the American Airlines logo. The slipper is closed-toe and made of black terry material with black fabric trim and has an anti-skid sole. For Virgin America, the company’s Nap Pack is a retail onboard item that comes with a comfortable blanket, pillow and reusable tote bag. Launched onboard in 2015, it features Virgin America’s signature red and purple colors and geometric tail fin design. In 2014, Etihad Airways partnered with WESSCO to design and develop an innovative pillow. Patented by Etihad, the Economy Ergonomic Pillow is a two-in-one pillow, which can be used as a regular pillow or torn on the perforation marks to convert into a U-shaped neck pillow, providing neck support and improved comfort for a good night’s sleep in Economy. Etihad has also partnered with the firm on another generation of stylish sleep suits for First Class passengers. Minimalistic and refined, the sleep suit’s zip-up collar subtly flaunts the Etihad First Class logo. The sleep suits match the elegant and spacious surroundings of Etihad’s First cabins. “Passengers can enjoy maximum comfort in luxurious fabrics both during their flight and at home after their journey,” says WESSCO International Director, Marketing Mark Nguyen. During the WTCE 2016, WESSCO will launch a new collection that experiments with fresh material combinations, such as hitech materials, jersey or brushed peachskin, in order to preserve the comfort and luxury lifestyle. “We always try to harmonize the atmosphere of the cabin, in line with the comfort items and loungewear which we design,” he says. WESSCO has noticed that its airline clients are asking for a greater variety of products, designs and materials. They expect higher quality and longer-lasting materials (for example, for repeated washing). They are also more open to partnering with prestige linenrelated brands, says Nguyen. In recent years, the airlines have been giving much more value to the functionality of the design, the usability and sustainability of the products. “We believe airline customers place their emphasis on ultimate comfort and elegant, yet simple design,” he concludes.

The Nap Pack is sold on Virgin America

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EXHIBITOR SPOTLIGHT - WTCE RETAIL ZONE

Once devoted to inflight food service, Irish chocolatier Lily O’Brien’s

UNDERSTANDING MILLENNIALS

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etail brands are being encouraged to consider expanding their business horizons and look to the skies, with a greater focus on millennials which today represent more than 50% of the travelers. Research, published by Counter Intelligence Retail recommends that brands improve their understanding of the behaviors and shopping habits of the 20-35 age group, in order to create an engaging experience and drive sales onboard. Feedback from senior visitors and airlines to the World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo put the biggest onboard retail products of interest as: alcoholic beverages, skin care products and toiletries, toys and games, as well as the technology used to purchase goods onboard. This is particularly important given the CiR research, which reveals a preference by millennials to engage with and use automated processes for retail transactions. Building on its successful launch at WTCE 2015, the Travel Retail Zone returns for the fifth year to the exhibition, April 5-7 in Hamburg. Reflecting the huge growth this sector has experienced in recent years, the Travel Retail Zone allows buyers to meet with suppliers of sale-on-board items and discuss how they can boost their offering to appeal to the modern traveler. Dedicated to onboard retail services and products including wines and spirits, cosmetics, perfumes and toys, the Travel Retail Zone is designed to enable buyers and suppliers to meet and discuss retail trends, latest product launches and how best to boost revenues. In addition to the Travel Retail Zone, show visitors can also follow the Travel Retail Trail leading attendees to other exhibitors at the show with a travel retail offering. Forty-five suppliers are currently confirmed to showcase products

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Companies filling out this year’s Travel Retail Zone at WTCE have group of young travelers who are quickly taking up half the airline seats

as part of the zone including Bottega Spa, producer and distributor of Italian premium quality beverages, who will showcase its Bottega Gold Prosecco Brut sparkling wine, Bottega Rose Gold sparkling wine and Vino dei Poeti Prosecco. Visitors with a sweet tooth can also follow the Travel Retail Trail to see the latest offering from Lily O’Brien’s, a manufacturer of premium chocolate confectionary and award winning gourmet desserts or Montezuma Chocolates, producers of luxury innovaBottega Gold Prosecco flowed at the Travel Retail Zone last year


EXHIBITOR SPOTLIGHT - WTCE RETAIL ZONE

This is the fifth year for the Travel Retail Zone at the World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo

tive British chocolates including the Kingdom Chocolate and Great British Puddings truffle collections. While gategroup, a leading independent global provider of products, services and solutions will showcase a wide range of products including cosmetics and perfumes, jewelery and watches as well as food and beverages. “Onboard retail for airlines and rail operators is an increasingly lucrative business, providing a great source of revenue as well as improving the customer experience onboard,” said Archana Sharma, WTCE Event Manager. “WTCE provides the ideal place for suppliers to meet new customers and source new products that are a great fit for their brand and onboard offering. We look forward to welcoming visitors to Hamburg to discover the latest product innovations.”

As part of Passenger Experience Week 2016, WTCE is co-located with Aircraft Interiors Expo, the world’s largest event dedicated to sourcing the latest innovations, technologies and products for the cabin interiors, inflight entertainment and passenger comfort industries. Kicking off the week, the highly regarded Passenger Experience Conference will run on Monday April 4, the day before the exhibition opens, and will feature a dedicated session to onboard hospitality. After an information-packed day at the conference, delegates can join exhibitors and visitors at the Industry Networking Party where an evening of entertainment and cocktails will allow them to network in a relaxed environment. Editor’s Note – PAX International thanks Reed Exhibitions for its help creating this article.

Research firm tracks Chinese preferences via social media An analysis of data of outbound Chinese travelers going to the U.S., Japan, Hong Kong and Singapore has identified that local brands overseas are as popular as luxury brands. The research, conducted by digital insights firm 6Estates, was based on almost 300,000 online conversations drawn from Chinese social platforms and travel websites during the last quarter of 2015. These were analyzed using Natural Language Processing (NLP), algorithms that accurately process authentic conversations in English and Chinese, providing more accurate context to the discussion.  Luxury goods, cosmetics, clothing and watches were identified as key product categories for the outbound Chinese traveler in all four countries. Hermès, Chanel and Estée Lauder were top choices in at least three of the countries studied. However, local brands are equally popular according to the data. Conversations focused on Charles & Keith in Singapore, Sasa in Hong Kong, Uniqlo in Japan and Coach in USA.  Singapore was also the country that generated the most chatter about food with local barbecued pork delicacy brand Bee Cheng Hiang featuring highly. Most Chinese travelers intended to travel to the U.S., with 46% of conversations being about America, followed by Japan (26%), Hong Kong (21%) and Singapore (5%). Commenting on the research, 6Estates CEO and Co-Founder, Gary Chin said: “We were able to pinpoint top destinations within each country, valuable information for tourism boards and retailers targeting tourists. In Japan for example we worked with one of the country’s leading advertising agencies to find out where Chinese tourists travelled to, and what they were saying about their experiences. With the findings, it will be possible to develop more targeted tourism campaigns that speak directly to the Chinese audience.” Chinese travelers mainly originate mainly from China’s tier-one cities, such as Shanghai and Beijing. These two cities have the highest incomes in the country, demonstrating that travelers are likely affluent. According to the China National Tourism Association, 120 million Chinese travelled abroad in 2015, a 19.5% year-on-year increase and nearly 13 times the level in 1998. A recent report by Fung Business Intelligence Centre and China Luxury Advisors indicated that Chinese tourist overseas expenditures are expected to have reached US$229 billion in 2015. 50  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016


PASSENGER EXPERIENCE WEEK A Margherita Croque from Gastro Culinary Innovation

TASTING THE TRENDS

A newcomer to the industry Gastro Culinary Innovation will be bringing its extensive line of sweets and savouries to this year’s WTCE by JACQUI DAVIDSON, DIRECTOR, GASTRO CULINARY INNOVATION

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irline food is having a renaissance. Gone are the days of dry chicken or watery scrambled eggs and in its place a selection of restaurantquality meals that are pleasing to the palette, easy on the eye and gastronomically on trend. Who could have imagined even five years ago that passengers would be able to ‘take afternoon tea’ or enjoy deli-quality dishes at 37,000 feet? These days it is the norm, even on low cost carriers, and one company at the forefront of this movement is convenience snacking brand Gastro Culinary Innovation. Specializing in innovative products based around current restaurant and food trends, Gastro Culinary Innovation creates hot savoury snacks – including empanadas, burritos and strombolis, mini deli dishes and street food – as well as afternoon tea cakes and sweet cuppie® cakes. In 2015, the company decided to direct its business strategy toward the onboard services industry and took a stand at industry leading exhibition World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo (WTCE). This proved to be an extremely valuable decision, as company director Jacqui Davidson, explains: “In 2015, we decided to make the onboard services sector a priority for the company. We recognised that there was a gap in the market for airline food that was essentially delicious but also on-trend, well-presented, and could withstand the stresses of onboard handling – everything that we stand for. So in order to make our brand visible to as many key operators in this area as possible, we took a stand at the Hamburg event and showcased a selection of products in our Gastro Classic, Deli Dishes, Street Eatz and Gastro Cuppie®

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cake and full afternoon tea ranges. “To say we were delighted with the outcome would be an understatement. Not only did we welcome a steady stream of new and extremely influential airline and rail professionals to our stand throughout the event, but we also managed to forge deeper relationships with the contacts that we already had. As a result, our business has seen positive growth, particularly since the event itself, and we have many exciting new business opportunities in the pipeline for 2016. We are really looking forward to exhibiting in Hamburg again and hope to build on and replicate the success of 2015.” Gastro Culinary Innovation’s story is not unusual. Many companies have reported and lucrative deals thanks to their participation in the air and rail industry’s flagship onboard services event. And in 2016, the exhibition

Chips: a popular snack in the transportation sector is now made by Gastro Culinary Innovation

is hoping to attract even more businesses from the food sector, according to WTCE Marketing Manager Danielle Wolstencroft: “Airline food has long been a well-documented bugbear for passengers travelling across the globe. Despite many being unwilling to pay more for improved catering offerings, customer expectations have continued to increase. So airline and rail operators have been forced to find alternative ways to meet demand, which is where events like WTCE come in.” In addition to providing a showcase for innovative suppliers, Wolstencroft said WTCE also offers an opportunity for new business networking and relationship building. In 2016 the event is celebrating its fifth anniversary with the most in-depth educational programme to date.


at nd us sta 1 sit n A v i E o a ll H TC 8 W 1C2

Ratcliffe & Brown, experts at combining quality wines with your packaging and logistical requirements.

www.chateaux.com | +44 (0)20 8294 0721 | sales@chateaux.com


PASSENGER EXPERIENCE WEEK Grand Truffles from exhibitor Montezuma

PAX EXPERIENCE WEEK PERSPECTIVE Lower air fares, onboard technology and the rise of premium economy shape the global travel industry by SYREETA TRANFIELD, EVENT DIRECTOR, WTCE

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he lowering of air fares, growth in technology-driven onboard services and the rise of premium economy are just some of the major trends influencing the global travel industry today. As new travel markets open in previously less developed regions, there are now more passengers than ever before. Travel operators must understand the changing travel landscape and respond accordingly. The World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo (WTCE) represents the ideal platform to discuss the current and future trends, plus much more when it returns to Hamburg April 5-7. Price is still the deciding factor when consumers plan their air travel. According to latest insight and statistics from travel specialist Expedia and the Airlines Reporting Corporation, travellers search an average of 48 times on eight different sites before booking a flight. Competition between airlines is therefore extremely fierce, and has seen global air ticket prices decline on average by 8% compared to last year. Particular regions have experienced more acute price drops throughout 2015. For travellers interested in going from North America to Asia-Pacific, economy air fares fell on average 13%. In Europe, the cost of an economy plane ticket between European countries is now on average 17% cheaper than in 2014. This change in the cost of airfare has had a direct impact on the choice of quality available to travellers of all budgets. Yet, it is clear to see that consumers still want the best service their money can buy. Responding to consumer expectations, airlines are ensuring luxury is available in both First and Business Classes, with menus designed by Michelin starred chefs; premium ingredients regionally sourced 54  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

and extended passenger comfort. However, this has led to increased focus on savings at the back of the plane. There is also an increasing trend for passengers who are willing to pay a little more for something better than Economy Class. A few airlines have tried to fill that middle market product gap simply by adding a few inches of legroom and a couple of perks such as welcome drinks, speedy boarding and noise cancelling headphones to what is effectively the same product they have in the Economy cabin. However, other airlines are taking a more ambitious approach in catering to the needs of entrepreneurs, economy business travellers, and more affluent leisure travellers. They are introducing a true, differentiated Premium Economy class. This offering will include a variety of unique perks unavailable in standard Economy, such as free food and drink, superior inflight entertainment and increased technology onboard. Generation Y consumers are synonymous with the latest technological developments and integrate their lives with smart technology wherever possible. Technology and infrastructure advances mean that personalised travel will no longer be limited to booking a flight or hotel via a smartphone. Airlines are taking note of this trend and are striving for a personalised ‘end to end’ experience. Travellers will be able to seamlessly pre-order inflight meals, book their air fare, receive traffic alerts for the journey to the airport and select inflight entertainment all from their smartphone. Affording travellers this complete packaging will influence their buying habits and go a long way to enhancing the overall passenger experience. These trends and more will be debated at the Passenger Experience Conference,


PASSENGER EXPERIENCE WEEK held April 4, that provides delegates with an ideal forum for discussion on cabin innovation and profitability strategies. Visitors to the World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo (WTCE®) will extend the opportunity to discuss the future of the industry with fellow professionals. The exhibition will offer a unique platform for professionals from across the air and rail industries to meet over 300 industry suppliers and source the latest onboard products, such as Montezuma’s line of luxury chocolates, Gastro Culinary Innovation’s hot savoury snacks and LSG Sky Chef ’s range of catering, onboard retail, equipment and logistics solutions. Visitors will have the opportunity to attend a wide range of networking events and view demonstrations from world-class chefs. Building on its successful launch at last year’s show, the Travel Retail Zone (see related story, page 48). Reflecting the huge growth this sector has experienced in recent years, the Travel Retail Zone allows buyers to meet with suppliers of sale-on-board items and discuss how they can boost their offering to appeal to the modern traveller. The Travel Retail Trail will also lead attendees to those exhibitors around the show floor with a travel retail offering, making it easy for them to plan their visit and come away with plenty of inspiration. Visitors can also take advantage of the Taste of Travel theatre, which returns to the show to promote the latest innovations in onboard services and travel catering. Some of the industry’s most sought-after names will provide interactive demonstrations, thought provoking presentations, tasting and sampling opportunities. Kicking off Passenger Experience Week 2016, the highly regarded Passenger Experience Conference runs on Monday 4th April, the day before the exhibition opens. In-depth breakout sessions will highlight the trends impacting cabin interiors and passenger comfort, passenger entertainment and connectivity, hospitality, service and retail. After an information-packed day at the conference, delegates can join exhibitors and visitors at the Industry Networking Party where an evening of entertainment and cocktails will allow them to network in a relaxed environment. As part of Passenger Experience Week 2016, WTCE is colocated with Aircraft Interiors Expo, the world’s largest event dedicated to sourcing the latest innovations, technologies and products for the cabin interiors, inflight entertainment and passenger comfort industries.

Some things never change . . .

Tim Flugge von Danwitz shows SPIRIANT’s new QR solution at LSG Sky Chef’s stand at AIX/WTCE 2015

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SPECIALTY CATERING

Monty’s Bakehouse’s Gluten Free Primavera Vegetables Frittata

Healthy, elevated by MELISSA SILVA

As passengers become more educated about the foods they eat, airlines have found themselves faced with the task of delivering a more varied inflight offering and are looking to caterers for ripe solutions

I

n theory, the act of cooking is quite simple: ingredients are selected, a recipe is followed and a dish is made. In reality, especially today, this simple act has become somewhat complicated. With food allergies and intolerances, religious-based restrictions and an increasing desire to eat more natural, organic and preservative-free food, some might say cooking has never been more complex. Add an altitude of 35,000 feet, limited galley space and weight restrictions, and the act of cooking has gone from being complicated to an outright challenge. With airlines keen on improving the passenger experience by accommodating these growing dietary needs, caterers have taken note and are making the appropriate adjustments to their inflight offerings. “I think specialty food items are a growing focus of consumers,” says Cara Figgins Vice President of Partners, makers of Partners Crackers. “Passengers want to feel more connected to the foods they eat and the companies that make them. Specialty foods make consumers feel like their needs have been considered.”

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Green Gourmet’s gluten-free version of its award-winning Fish & Chips


. . . a new logo, the same philosophy.

Come and see us in Hall A stand 4D40


SPECIALTY CATERING

Boudewijn Van Eeghen, CCO of FlyFit (Vitalit Laboratories Int.), producer of healthy food and drink items developed to counter the stressful affects of flying such as fatigue, believes the focus on eating a healthier diet on the ground has over the last several years made its way on board. “The industry has slightly changed over the last few years,” says Van Eeghen. “People want to eat healthy and they1want to have something that1is X_subform_halfad:Layout 31/03/10 11:29 AM Page special or something that maybe they wouldn’t have at home. We are seeing it happening on the ground and now it is happening in the air, so the overall trend in airline food is improving.” Van Eeghen has noticed that more and more airlines are paying attention to their passenFrankenberg’s Vegan Sweet Potato Curry ger’s wellbeing, actively looking to change their onboard service by implementing healthier and alternative offerings. “Food and service are two of the only ways airlines is a healthier lifestyle choice,” says Barry Jordan, Marketing Manager differ from one another,” he adds. “Serving halal, kosher, organic and for Green Gourmet. “This demand is filtering through to foodservice healthier food will make the experience even better for passengers.” markets and inflight food is no exception. In response, a number of airlines have introduced a special diet information key to their menus Spotting the trends, recognizing demand to provide more clarity on their offering to consumers.” With a number of retail markets showing significant increases in This increased demand was the driving force behind Green Gourgluten-free sales, it has become apparent that the demand for gluten- met developing a gluten-free version of its award-winning Fish & free products is fueled by more than just celiac disease. “Rather than Chips product, which will be launched at the World Travel Catering due to medical need, the significant driver in this category’s growth Expo in Hamburg. “The product is made with our innovative crispy has been the widely held consumer perception that avoiding gluten coating system that gives a taste, texture and appearance as good as

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SPECIALTY CATERING standard batter,” explains Jordan. Although it has always tried to use the most authentic, simplest ingredients available, Monty’s Bakehouse has acknowledged the prevalent trend towards healthier and speciality foods and in response, has created a range of Special Meal options that include gluten-free and vegan hot snacks. “As people become more aware of what is in food and the implications it can have on their health, they become better informed to make decisions regarding what they choose to eat,” says Lucy Stowell, Senior Sales and Marketing Manager for Monty’s Bakehouse. “This is a lifestyle change and whilst certain elements are trends, in general people are living longer and trying to take better care of themselves.” In addition to Partners Crackers’ kosher, non-GMO, preservative- and hydrogenated oil-free cracker products, the company has introduced a new organic cracker made with sprouted lentils and ancient grains in response to the current demand for healthier options on board. “Passengers are looking for quality items, made with good ingredients just as they are in the grocery and specialty stores,” says Figgins. “This is a growing segment and passengers do not want to have to downgrade when they get on a plane.” Figgins sees the price/quality balance as a challenge airlines face with bringing more of these speciality options onto their passengers’ tray tables. “Airlines have to create options for passengers that meet their need and desire for specialty items, but also need to have the price points of their offerings in line with what passengers will pay. Just like at the specialty store level, consumers will pay for quality specialty items. It is up to the airlines to make sure their passengers know that what they are getting is special quality through their marketing and menu materials.”

A noticeable shift Known for its fatigue-fighting and health-conscious food and drink products, FlyFit recently developed a variety of new flavors of its halal, gluten-free yoghurts, including peach passion

Partners’ Hors D’Oeuvre Crackers are certified kosher and made from high quality non-GMO ingredients

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SPECIALTY CATERING fruit, strawberry and mango, all of which are made without any artificial sweeteners or preservatives. “We also recently launched the FlyFit Antioxidant Fruit and Nut Mix, featuring ingredients that help passengers feel fitter upon arrival,” says Van Eeghen. In addition, FlyFit has also launched the FlyFit mini drink (125 ml) in a variety of fruit flavors, including lemon mint, mango, multi fruit with vitamins, pineapple and orange. The smallest drink ever made for the airline industry, the FlyFit mini drink is free of preservatives, artificial colorings and sweeteners and is also halal certified. One of the first to introduce organic meals to airlines, German frozen meal manufacturer Frankenberg produces a large variety of specialty meals for many of the world’s carriAWARD ers. “Producing for both airlines and also in the food services WINNING andWINE retail industries, we have historically always focused in 2013 on nutrition even before the nutritional labelling laws were introduced,” says Helga Friedrichs, Management, Purchasing, Product Development for Frankenberg. “We ensure no use of chemical substances such as artificial colorants, preservatives and flavor enhancers.” Noticing an increasing demand for vegan and vegetarian options, Frankenberg has developed a huge variety of meals for both the airline and retail market. “The ‘flexitarian’ is a newcomer in trend eating,” explains Friedrichs. “This is someone who reduces their meat consumption and more often will go for an innovative vegetarian option.” The shift towards offering specialty food options on board, from health-conscious to halal, doesn’t stop with the entrée. Dessert suppliers like Irish chocolatier Lily O’Brien’s have also taken note of this shift, and have made the appropriate adjustments to their sweet offerings. After launching its range of award-winning halal desserts last year — which have proven

Visit us at WTCE Hamburg 2016! Booth 1E30

www.montevibiano.it tel : + 39 0758783001 e-mail : info@montevibiano.it

Lily O’Brien’s range of award-winning halal desserts

60  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016 Dan Esc. Pagina Intera.indd 1

21-01-2013 21:30:35


SPECIALTY CATERING to be hugely successful — Lily O’Brien’s realized that passengers are becoming more and more aware of their dietary needs when flying, and are not apt to deny them simply because they are 35,000 feet in the air. “Retail on the ground will always lead the trends we see inflight,” says James Duff, Foodservice Account Manager for Lily O’Brien’s. “As people become more aware of their own dietary needs they will expect the airlines to make available products that meet their specific needs.” Duff sees these specific health and wellness needs as more than just mere trends, and desserts are not excluded from the movement, just as they are not excluded from daily consumption both off and on the ground. “We’ve seen a huge shift in awareness and education around these issues for the past three decades and it continues to be a key concern for consumers,” he says.  “As a result, airline passengers

are more aware of what it is they eat and what the impact is to their well-being. Taking a more holistic approach to their lifestyle is key, and as part of this approach there needs to be an opportunity to also treat themselves. Indulgent desserts that do not fully compromise their general choice allow them to balance these needs.” Looking ahead, most caterers are of the belief that the inflight catering landscape is indeed experiencing a shift, and for the better. The demand for alternative offerings and an increased focus on specialty, non-GMO and preservative-free foods will continue, as more and more passengers become unwilling to compromise their dietary needs when stepping onto a plane. “I also see this shift as an opportunity for airlines to improve their customer experience,” says Partners’ Figgins. “The competitive nature of the airline business will also continue to drive this shift.”

FlyFit’s halal, gluten-free yoghurts made without any artificial sweeteners or preservatives

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www.pax-intl.com  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  61


WINE AND SPIRITS : COCKTAILS AND WINE REPORT

VINTAGE HOSPITALITY

A year of superior growing seasons and development in packaging along with a vibrant airline industry gives wine companies at this year’s WTCE reason for optimism in the year ahead by RICK LUNDSTROM

F

rom the French Pavilion, which year after year displays some of the most trusted names in airline wine sales, to stands and aisles of this year’s World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo, visiting airlines can expect to see another year of product development and packaging. Airlines in the United States, flush with profit, have over recent years opened up new opportunities for sales with their move back to complimentary beverage service on international routes. In other parts of the world, Asian airlines have been keen to tout their premium wine lists. In October of last year, Cathay Pacific Airways unveiled its new wine selection, featuring wines from France and Argentina. Three red and two white wines from Bordeaux, and four premium Argentinian red wines were carefully selected for First and Business Class passengers. The selection took flight in November throughout the airline’s network and the wines will be changed regularly. The First Class wine selection features prestigious wines from Pessac Leognan, Bordeaux. Four wines from Argentina were available to Business Class passengers starting in December on the airline’s longhaul flights. While airlines in the United States have again seen the need to please passenger with complimentary wines on international

The Diamond Hill range of wines from Labouré Roi

62  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

routes, they cannot overlook the revenue possibilities of wine, beer and spirits sales inflight. They have moved away from collecting cash to offering discounts to airline credit card holders and other incentives to buy inflight. From November 2013 to March 2014, onboard technology company Guestlogix tracked more than 8 million transactions across five U.S. airlines. According to the results, sales of spirits, beer and wine accounted 57% of the transactions. Spirits was the most popular choice for purchase at 34%, while wine was 13% and beer was 10%. During the four-month test period, alcohol sales accounted for more than US$43 million. This year’s WTCE will be heavily represented with French wines, which have long been a favorite on Asian airlines like Cathay Pacific. Like years past, Business France will be hosting a full pavilion of companies anxious to find inroads and add to the list of customers. The year 2015 was a good one for wine producers in France, particularly in the prime growing regions in Burgundy where companies such as Labouré Roi find some of the best grapes for blending and producing wines. The company has an advanced winery in Burgundy with a cellaring capacity of 1,300 barrels. “Burgundy is the cradle of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay,” said Jean Noël Christie, Duty Free Manager at Labouré Roi. “With this heritage, Labouré Roi wine making team is devoted to the quality and has installed a full monitory system with several domains dispatched from Chablis to the Beaujolais District.” The company’s brands can be found throughout the world’s fleet. Among the most recent customers are Thai Airways, Emirates Air Caribe, Air Madagascar and United Airlines. The company has also moved full ahead into PET packaging and is offering PET wines in 187 centiliter, 750 centiliter and one liter bottles. Labouré Roi is also proud of its environmental efforts for the past eight years. It has been involved with the United Nations and

Aaldering Wines and Vineyard plans to add a sparkling wine and a sweet wine to its offering in the future

the Greenbelt Movement. For every bottle sold by the company that is part of the program, the company will finance the planting of a tree in Mali or Indonesia. The goal, said Christie is planting 100,000 trees per year. Not only has the past year been a productive one for wines at Grands Chais de France; it has also been a year or acquisition. In 2015, the company purchased the Burgundy grower François Martenot. It is also offering a selection of sparkling wine from the Limoux area and acquired a new estate in Languedoc Château Belles Eaux near Pezenas. The company has also been busy with innovation and will launch a major new product this fall designed for the travel channel. In September of this year, GCF will be showing potential customers its new multi-layer PET bottle designed to hold sparkling wine. “All of our research and development and our engineers have been focused on it,” said Laurent Jacquemont, Travel Retail Manager at GCF. “And the results are very positive, so now we can move forward on the operational side.” The multi-layer PET construction will keep the product under optimum conditions, said Jacquemont. GCF will fill the new offering with Philippe Dublanc product. The development comes just in time for what Jacquemont said is a shift in taste and preferences. Even among the company’s low-cost-carrier customers, “there is a trend to leverage up the quality and the selection.”

The cellars of Labouré Roi in Burgundy can hold up to 1,300 barrels


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WINE AND SPIRITS : COCKTAILS AND WINE REPORT South African surge The wines of South Africa have been gaining notice and notoriety in recent years. The year 2015 was another bright spot for producers. Exports from the country increased 5% last year and industry watchers were seeing a rosy year from growth and export in 2016 as well. South Africa is the world’s seventh largest wine producer and volumes have increased more than 20% over the last four years to 420 million liters annually. The company’s wine university at Stellenbosch has also been gaining notoriety and reputation. Growers in the region are focusing on China and other emerging wine consumer markets. Other growers in a recent CNN report say they are finding customers in places like California and New York. Fons Aaldering is fortunate to leverage his long association with the airline industry to find customers around the world. Aaldering was a pioneer in airline catering, first with Marfo in the Netherlands and later started Delta Dailyfood. He operates the farm with his wife, Marianne. The winery recently expanded opening luxury guest lodges with breathtaking views of the Devon Valley. The past summer was a hot in the Valley, said

64 IBENA_WTV_ANZEIGE-2016.indd |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  | 1 MARCH/APRIL 2016

Aaldering, but he said the region is blessed with a microclimate and evening breezes that cooled the grapes that were on the vine. Though he has been out of the industry, Aaldering said he has established long-term contacts among the industry, and the company’s boutique wines from the 24 hectre winery have been served on more than 60 airlines. Much of the company’s offerings are in the front cabin. Among the company’s current customers are American Airlines, ANA, Asiana and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. Aaldering currently makes eight wines: Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and a rarely

Cathay Pacific’s French offering: Château Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc 2011, Château Bouscaut Blanc 2012, Château Haut-Bergey 2005, Chateau Olivier Red 2009, Domaine de Chevalier 2012

seen Pinotage Blanc, an un-oaked Pinotage, a wooded Pinotage, a Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot blend and an oaked Pinotage Rosé and a Shiraz. Production practices at Aaldering Vineyards and Wines follow fine craftsmanship. The products are made in 750 milliliter glass bottles stylishly labeled and corked. The company has its eye to the future. When the growing season is right, Aaldering tells PAX International that he plans to produce a sweet wine made from late harvest. The company also has its sights set on producing a sparkling wine.

Cathay Pacific’s Argentinian offering: Andeluna 1300, Malbec 2014, Las Perdices Reserva, Malbec 2013, Mendoza Vineyards Gran Reserva, Malbec 2012, Bodega Ruca Malen Yauquen, Malbec Cabernet Sauvignon 2014

26.01.16 16:40


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WINE AND SPIRITS : AIRLINE WINE PROGRAM

a seasonal

UNION

Carmen Quagliata of the Unions Square Café in New York

Delta Air Lines’ association with New York’s Union Square Café Group gave its sommelier, Andrea Robinson, the chance to pair wines with seasonal menus for the carrier’s Delta One cabin on several important routes to Europe by RICK LUNDSTROM

D

elta Air Lines may have ramped up its association with one of the most prominent restaurant groups in New York for meals in its Delta One cabin to Europe, but the airline realizes that fine cuisine is only half the battle without a superb selection of wines to accompany it. And winning that battle takes commitment early in the planning process. Delta decided early on that it’s front-cabin menu selections would be themed around the seasons and feature ingredients from one of the pioneering farm-to-table restaurant groups in New York. Menus are produced from ingredients sourced around the city, and in some cases, plucked from the rooftops. To make the process work and synch the wines on board with the seasonal offerings, detailed planning is needed. Wines for the spring menus needed to be purchased and delivered to Delta stations as the farm-fresh products were emerging from the ground. “The final menu came together a lot closer to the time that they are boarded than the wine, just because of the logistics,” Delta’s Master Sommelier Consultant Andrea Robinson tells PAX International. The airline is also relying on logistics expertise in the latest Delta One meals, that are being prepared at the Union Square Events Center in New York and delivered daily to the aircraft at JFK. They are then boarded on Delta flights to London/Heathrow, Brussels, Frankfurt,

66  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

Paris/de Gaulle, Amsterdam and Dublin. So as soon as Robinson got wind of some of the ingredients that Union Square Café Chef Carmen Quagliata would be using , she set about looking for a selection of wines to pair with those seasonal flavors. The spring offering takes the place of a selection of winter menus developed by Nick Anderer, Chef and Partner at Union Square Hospitality Group’s (USHG) restaurant Marta, that were onboard Delta flights starting in December of last year. Luckily enough, the sommelier already had a long association with Danny Meyer’s USHG whose New York Restaurants like the Grammercy Tavern, North End Grill, Maialino will be featured aboard Delta flights in the future. Indeed, Delta had been working with the restaurant group on a limited basis since 2013 when it boarded some of the barbecued offerings from the USHG’s Blue Smoke southern cuisine café. Among the selection in March were a beef short ribs stracatto, Union Square’s classic roasted chicken breast, Gulf shrimp and polenta and baked pacceri basil cream pasta. “I can take all those flavor profiles and inform the wine selections that way and incorporate, as well, the local products where it makes sense,” said Robinson. One of the places where such sourcing made sense is for Union


WINE AND SPIRITS : AIRLINE WINE PROGRAM Square Café menu is Gotham Greens, which was started in 2009 in Brooklyn. Gotham Greens provides retail, restaurant and institutional customers a year-round, local supply of produce grown in 170,000 square feet of technologically advanced, urban rooftop greenhouses across four locations in New York City and Chicago. “Our partnership with Union Square Café perfectly aligns with our overall strategy to offer fresh, local and seasonal food to our customers,” said Allison Ausban, Delta’s Senior Vice President of Inflight Service in the February announcement of the airline’s association with Union Square. “Through this partnership customers will enjoy food picked straight from the farm that morning and on their tray table that night.”

Wines paired with Union Square Café offerings *Flights to CDG and LHR Only

Reds

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Charmes de Kirwan Margaux 2012*

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Bernardus Estate Pinot Noir 2012*

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Banfi Rosa Regale Brachetto d’Acqui 2014

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Ferriera Dona Antonia Porto

Portugal

Andrea Robinson talks about selecting wines to serve at altitude In the eight years Andrea Robinson has been working as a wine consultant for Delta Air Lines, she has delved extensively into the ways wine taste is perceived inflight. The airline tests many potential candidates in the cabin at cruising altitude. Also, she said Delta often takes various types of wines, such as Bordeaux into the cabin at 35,000 feet to make sure characteristics will show well. In her research, Robinson said she has found two major issues with the way wines are perceived inflight. In the low humidity, passengers can see a diminished sense of smell. The sense of smell dictates how much flavor a wine drinker will experience. “When you have a dry cabin environment and the reduction in vaporization and the reduction in moisture in our olfactory cavity, you have a whole lot less ability to perceive flavors,” she said. The second issue is the cabin pressure. With the lower pressure, vaporization occurs faster whether it is steam off a bowl of soup, or the scent of a glass of wine. That requires a wine that can trap the flavors that are evaporating off the surface. “Consequently, you have to really have wines that have a significant presence on the palate. And that is really a harmonization of all of the flavor and aroma components. And then as well, texturally it has to be pretty juicy to compensate for how dried out your palate and olfactory sensory areas are,” she said.

Delta Air Lines Sommelier Andrea Robinson

www.pax-intl.com  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  67


DUTY FREE

HEY, BIG SPENDER! i2i Group China’s CEO Alexander Glos discusses the Chinese shopper’s spending habits and how i2i is targeting an attractive subset: the repeat traveler by HIBAH NOOR

i

2i Group is a consultancy that specializes in analyzing Chinese market trends, and Asia Duty Free recently sat down with Alexander Glos, CEO of i2i Group China, to discuss the latest developments with regard to this important duty free shopper demographic. He told us that the big Chinese shopping trend in the second half of 2015 was the significant increase in shopping by the Chinese in Europe. “It was good before, but in the second half of 2015 it was explosive,” Glos said. “Global Blue reported their refund processing grew 72% year over year. This is largely due to the exchange rate shift; today, the Euro is cheap compared to the U.S. Dollar for the Chinese. As a result, they are flooding Europe.” Glos said that globally, the inbound Chinese traveler market is growing rapidly— for example to the USA, from 2.2 million last year to a projected 5 million by 2020. What’s more, repeat travelers, which

68  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

Most Galerié readers are going to the U.S. and nearly 80% will travel within 90 days


DUTY FREE

Fully 80% of Chinese luxury purchases originate outside of China because Chinese consumers prefer the retail experience of buying abroad. Furthermore, they enjoy sharing their experiences with their friends and colleagues through social media. –A  lexander Glos, CEO of i2i Group China

according to China Daily USA. More than 2 million Chinese visited the U.S. in 2014, and this number is expected to increase. • Ctrip, China’s top online travel booking service, says that the number of Chinese tourists who booked trips during China’s national holiday increased by 150% in 2015 over the previous year. Furthermore, shopping remains a major focus, with 36% of Chinese tourists surveyed by Ctrip selecting shopping as the purpose for their trip. • Given the Unites States’ decision to offer 10-year visas to Chinese nationals from November 2014, more Chinese travelers are planning on visiting the U.S. on their own as opposed to travelling as part of a tour group, says Ctrip. Los Angeles, New York, Honolulu, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Washington D.C., Boston, Orlando and Chicago are the top U.S. destinations for independent Chinese travelers. • Appraisal firm Miller Samuel suggests that precisely because of the economic upheaval within China, more money may finds its way into the U.S., particularly in residential and commercial real estate.

Reaching the right people

currently count for 1.4 million Chinese, spend an average of nearly US$10,000 on luxury shopping. While he notes that these travelers are particularly attractive targets for duty free, he concedes that they’re a hard group to reach given that they’re independent travelers as opposed to part of a homogeneous group. “Many brands are now focused on how best to align the flow of goods with the flow of qualified and capable Chinese buyers,” Glos added. “Fully 80% of Chinese luxury purchases originate outside of China because Chinese consumers prefer the retail experience of buying abroad. Furthermore, they enjoy sharing their experiences with their friends and colleagues through social media.”

i2i has developed a new publication called Galerié, which is distributed to Chinese travelers when they apply for their travel visa in China. Importantly, the magazine reaches the attractive repeat traveler target group since these travelers apply through CITIC Bank for their visas. The magazine is distributed across all CITIC Bank locations across China. And there are other advantages to this approach, explained Glos: “What is particularly attractive about this way of distributing the magazine is that each of these travelers is unique because one does not typically apply for a visa several times a year. Rather than a typical magazine hitting the same readers multiple times a year, in this case we get all new readers with each issue.”

Facts and figures Glos cited a number of sources which indicate that despite widespread economic turbulence in many markets throughout the world, Chinese tourism and shopping continues strongly. China Luxury Advisors notes that the Chinese slowdown isn’t changing the amount of travel, but rather the nature of it. This includes fewer long-haul trips among the middle class and a lower average spend, but one that is still strong compared to other nationalities. Backing up Glos’ claim that Chinese travelers prefer shopping outside the country, China Luxury Advisors says that figures indicate that Chinese consumers currently spend US$229 billion per year outside China. This amount is projected to double by 2020. Glos cited a number of other sources which suggest that the boom in Chinese shopping isn’t going away anytime soon: • According to marketing organization BrandUSA, Chinese visitors to the U.S. spent a staggering US$24 billion in the country in 2014. • China is the second-largest inbound travel market for the U.S.

Repeat travelers, which currently count for 1.4 million Chinese, spend an average of nearly US$10,000 on luxury shopping

www.pax-intl.com  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  69


DUTY FREE It’s easy to see why advertising in the magazine would be an attractive way for brands and retailers to reach these travelers, but i2i has taken the quest to connect advertisers and shoppers one step further with its Wechat platform. “Wechat is sort of a customer relationship management platform for our advertisers,” Glos said. “We have over 350,000 members in our Wechat platform, allowing us to connect the advertiser to the reader on an ongoing basis.” Given the above, Glos told us he sees Galerié as much more than simply a magazine. “It’s a print and digital publication, but also an integrated marketing solution that enables luxury and premium brands to build a customer base that consists of their target shopper. The magazine reaches an impressive 640,000 repeat Chinese travelers every year.” Another advantage to this approach is that Galerié’s readers are virtually guaranteed to travel given that they receive the magazine upon applying for a visa. “No one in China is getting a visa for fun,” quipped Glos. “They are getting a visa because they are traveling.” Most Galerié readers are going to the U.S. and Glos told us that nearly 80% will travel within 90 days. “The bottom line is that Galerié offers retailers, brands and service providers an ongoing marketing and communications package that keeps them in contact with a very attractive group of travelers not only as they are making their travel plans, but also during predeparture, while they are in the U.S. and for months afterwards,” Glos concluded.

i2i Group China has developed a new publication called Galerié, which is distributed to Chinese travelers when they apply for their travel visa in China

70  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016


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CLIP ONBOARD SOLUTIONS

INNOVATING

The picnic box is designed to serve a twocourse meal and to help enhance the passenger experience by having fun onboard, as if going on a picnic in the air

AT A FAST CLIP Clip, a new, design-driven player in the aviation supply industry, is showcasing at WTCE a range of innovative, smart and sustainable onboard solutions onboard, from concept to delivery by MARY JANE PITTILLA

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indy Lam, the Director of new aviation supplier Clip, is the month/early next month. “This is an example of our creativity, proud of the fact her company is what she calls the “new combined with industry experience, coupled with speed to market kid on the block,” because it means the firm can showcase in getting the product prototyped within a short period of time, at fresh, beautiful and smart solutions onboard. the right cost and according to airline expectations,” asserts Lam. Headquartered in Hong Kong, Clip was founded in September Additionally, the firm can bring the right brand and expert partners 2015, backed by Lam’s considerable experience on both the supply and together for specific projects. Lam notes that there are many specialist customer side. “We are the new kid on the block. Having worked in suppliers that concentrate on one particular product category, such the aviation supply industry for over 17 years, with extensive experias amenity kits or textiles, but Clip has formed partnerships with ence, familiar with major players both on the supply and customer specialist providers to help strengthen its position. “Having worked side, I decided that it was time to start a new company to fill the gap for many of our competitors, and knowing their strengths and weakin the market,” says Lam. “So I put together a business plan, found nesses, we have opted to turn certain opportunities in our favor,” says an investor, reached out to outside creative partners and the rest, as Lam. “Clip can offer full-service solutions to airlines, from concept they say, is the future in the making for Clip.” and product development for premium tableware and plastic serviceClip is setting out to be a young, dynamic creative force. Its design ware items to amenity kits and textiles. What sets us apart from our partner, an award-winning international design studio based in Switcompetition is our ability to find the right partnership.” zerland, is from outside the industry and brings a fresh perspective. Lam cites as an example the textiles category, where Clip works “They see and do things differently from those of us who have been in exclusively with Kuan’s Living, a prestigious Taiwanese brand with the business for a long time,” Lam says. “Because the design team is offices in Milan and Taipei and a retail presence in many countries. a creative agency first, their way of working is amazingly fast. Speed Kuan’s Living supplies upscale textile products in its own shops, to to market in creating solutions and having designs and prototypes leading hotels and to U.S. retailers including Macy’s. Through its colturned around quickly is paramount to our business model. We have laboration, Clip has embarked on a partnership to develop bespoke, demonstrated this in some of our key projects where we were able to luxury and cost-effective products and solutions for all cabins. provide 3D models to clients to show how our designs look and feel, and were even tested to see whether it was fit for purpose.” With strong design support coupled with many years of inflight expertise, especially on the project management and consultancy side, Clip intends to bring to the market something that few in the industry can match. “Our tagline is smart solutions onboard and we strive to find different and innovative ways to approach some of the challenges airlines and cabin crew face in terms of service delivery, but without sacrifice to the aesthetics of the product.” Recently, Clip helped develop a rotable solution for an international airline that faced many crew complaints and wastage problems with its disposable equipment. As a result of its new development, and the speed in which In collaboration with Kuan’s Living, Clip’s the company was able to prototype the 3D models, the partner in textiles, the companies are working to develop bespoke, luxury and cost-effective new product will be tested on trial flights at the end of products and solutions for all cabins

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CLIP ONBOARD SOLUTIONS

Functional yet beautiful Clip’s mission is to provide functional and beautiful equipment to make flying a more enjoyable experience. At the same time, the company wants to create a more sustainable society. Clip is working with some airlines to see how it can help them recycle some of their onboard products that can be used for new development. “This is a very interesting prospect, and recycling old products is another business model we are looking into seriously, as another differentiator for Clip.” Clip offers an extensive range of innovative inflight products that includes full-concept development in First, Business, Premium Economy and Economy Class for all items, whether it’s pyjamas for First or plastic serviceware items in Economy or tableware products for Business. The company offers design, development, and delivery on everything from rotable to disposable to comfort products to crew service items and amenities. “We have the skills and expertise to design and develop chinaware, stainless steel, glassware, rotable and disposable plastics and paper items, crew service products from a holistic approach, not item per item or piecemeal,” Lam explains.

Ambient

Fresh

Turning to new product concepts, Lam cites Picnic, which was developed for an airline that wanted a 1/3 size tray. The picnic box is designed to serve a two-course meal and to help enhance the passenger experience by having fun onboard, as if going on a picnic in the air. “It had to be easy to pack for the caterers, serve and retrieve by the crew, stow in the trolley and also be appealing to the passenger,” adds Lam. Picnic will be showcased at the World Travel Catering Expo (WTCE) in Hamburg — the first exhibition for Clip. This product, boasting many sustainable features, is designed for short- and medium-haul flights, as well as second service for the long-haul flights. “There is no such product flying today,” enthuses Lam. Clip has also developed a range of products that are eco-friendly and sustainable. For example, materials for some of its amenity bags come from sustainable sources. Some of these innovative products will be at WTCE as the company showcases its first inflight collection. Also at WTCE, Clip will display several prominent brands, and there will also be some smart solution products in response to airline challenges, such as its Smart rotable box concept to counter the impact from disposable products that make it difficult for crew handling and result in waste issues. Clip is constantly developing new products and services, emphasizes Lam. “This is our business model; we must look to the market and understand the trends, especially in hotels and restaurants, and find ways to bring these ideas onboard an airplane. We must be proactive and constantly look at new technology, materials and ways to innovate the inflight market. The key is to develop something that the airlines haven’t thought of. And with our team of design and inflight experts, we are well positioned to do just that.”

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Lam has clear views on what the airline industry needs. She observes that there have been some impressive innovations in aircraft design and cabin interiors the past few years, yet the flying experience has remained much the same. Lam believes the differentiation needs to be made in the cabins. “A design-focused company like Clip is able to offer new ideas and innovative solutions to airlines that want to differentiate themselves in their offer to enhance the overall passenger experience,” she says.

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ANCILLARY REVENUE

RETAIL ON THE MOVE LSG Group has two new fully owned subsidiaries and a popular awards program, all dedicated to growing inflight sales by RICK LUNDSTROM

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wo Irish companies specializing in onboard sales are now completely part of the LSG Group and at this year’s AIX/ WTCE event in Hamburg will be showing their capabilities in meeting consumer needs and building consumer profiles for their airline customers. At the same time, another division of LSG Sky Chefs has been taking a hands-on approach, bringing together cabin crew for days of discussion and fun, with a goal of learning the ropes of inflight sales. The announcement of the full purchase of Retail inMotion and Media inMotion happened in early February of this year, about the same time as gategroup announced it had purchased Scandinaviabased Inflight Service (see sidebar story). LSG Sky Chefs and Retail inMotion had been working closely since early 2003 with the goal of building up competence in onboard retail. Rather than concentrating on specific projects, customers or regions, the purchase will open up more capabilities. “This is a clear difference to other partnerships, which are usually focused on certain products or aspects of our business,” said Stefan Patermann, Retail inMotion’s Chief Commercial Officer. “Bringing them together under a common ownership in order to increase the benefits for all parties involved, was just a logical next step.” Currently, Retail inMotion and LSG Sky Chefs here four major retail customers: Germanwings/Eurowings, SunExpress, TUI Group and Ryanair. The purchase of the two companies comes at a time when onboard sales are increasing in importance, said Patermann. Among the focus by LSG Sky Chefs and Retail inMotion is food and beverage

A gala dinner and awards ceremony capped two days of seminars and discussions for the Monarch Airlines cabin crew

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Stefan Patermann, Retail inMotion’s Chief Commercial Officer

products, boutique items such as cigarettes, watches and pens and what Patermann calls “virtual products,” such as dinner reservations and trips to holiday destinations. Such sales opportunities exist long before the flight, during a pre-order process and through onboard sales whether by crew or through the inflight entertainment system. “In the past, onboard retail mainly existed on board low cost airlines,” said Patermann. “But we see a clear shift from complimentary catering models to onboard retail. Currently almost all airlines are running projects to increase ancillary revenues through retail concepts.” Both acquisitions bring with them their own specialties. Retail inMotion focuses on retail business with an expertise on the procurement and distribution of buy-on-board products, complete management of Buy-on-Board programs and end-to-end information technology support. Media inMotion’s portfolio includes hardware and software solutions for inflight retail systems, which offer much more variety and choice than traditional Inflight Entertainment Systems. The company’s systems integrate onboard shopping capabilities, thus providing an additional sales channel to passengers, as well as broadening the range of products and services offered for sale onboard.

Motivation for Monarch Airlines cabin crew Monarch Airlines cabin crew this year were again acknowledged for outstanding inflight sales performance at the third annual OMG! Conference, Training and Awards for sponsored by Alpha LSG a subsidiary of LSG Sky Chefs. The awards were presented during a dinner at the culmination of a two-day reward and recognition seminar held March 1-2 at the Beaumont Estate Hotel in Windsor. Sixty-five of the best performing members of Monarch’s cabin crew attended. Paul Gurnell, Alpha LSG’s Sales and Marketing Director hosted the ceremony and attended by Alpha LSG CEO Alex Forbes. Over the two days, Monarch’s best performing cabin crew and regional management worked with the Alpha LSG in-flight retail team in “brand immersion sessions.” They attended workshops on public speaking to help lead sales as and took part in commercially focused team-building activities such as a Masterchef and a Catwalk Challenge designed to motivate and display the brands that Monarch sells onboard. “It was a pleasure to see our Cabin Crew recognized by Alpha LSG for their excellent work for inflight service and retail. The crew really


ANCILLARY REVENUE enjoyed the training days and of course, the recognition at the awards ceremony,” said Adrian Tighe, Monarch’s Chief Commercial Officer. “We are immensely proud of the very high levels of customer service that our crew consistently deliver to our customers, something which we know they are all very passionate about. He said Alpha LSG is investing in the development of new products, innovative marketing concepts and new sales platforms, but added that the most important asset of all is the cabin crew. Gurnell said that Alpha LSG and Monarch had together designed a meaningful recognition program to reward and recognize as many people as possible who contribute to the airline’s inflight performance on more than17, 500 flights per year.

Sessions on public speaking and sales were part of the workshop session of the OMG! Conference Training and Awards

Inflight Service Group purchased by gategroup in February gategroup Holding AG announced recently that it has met all closing conditions and has acquired Inflight Service Group (“IFS”). The transaction, says gategroup will increase revenue to the company by CHF250 million (US$253 million) and EBITDA by CHF13.4 million (US$13.5 million) annually. Complementing the transaction is TUI Group’s recently announced a five-year contract with gategroup via Gate Retail Onboard. The agreement covers management of inflight retail food and beverage and duty free items as well as pre-order sales in the U.K. and across the Nordic countries. “The acquisition of IFS, now concluded, further expands gategroup’s leadership position in buy on board services in terms of size, number of customers, business intelligence (with data comprising purchasing preferences of more than 175 million passengers worldwide), and on-board technology,” said a February 2 release from gategroup. “We are very pleased to bring together gategroup and IFS, creating the basis for the best buy-on-board offering in the industry and leveraging our proven brand of quality and innovation to delight airline customers and their passengers. Additionally, the signing of the contract with TUI is another step in expanding our platform of customers, and we thank TUI for their trust in gategroup,” said Xavier Rossinyol, gategroup Chief Executive Officer.

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ANCILLARY REVENUE

FASHION FLIES Style is popping up all over Helsinki airspace this spring, with a literal runway fashion and new shopping portal on Finnair by RICK LUNDSTROM

The Nordic Sky Portal on Finnair’s A350. The Portal is available for entertainment, connectivity and shopping throughout the aircraft

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t the end of May, runway number 2 at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport will become the home of a one-of-akind fashion show, creatively dubbed a Match Made in HEL. Seven top designers from Asia and Europe will be part of the May 24 fashion show on the airport runway. Organizers, which include Finnair and the airport, were letting out information week by week in midApril with the first designer announced as Arashi Yanagawa from Japan. Designers from China, Korea, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Denmark and Norway have been invited to take part. Finnair is touting the event as a way to showcase its world connections that link Asia like no other airline in Europe. The airline flies to 17 Asian destinations, making use of its hub airport’s shorter connections. However, before the first model’s feet meet the asphalt catwalk, Finnair has already begun a fashion-related program of its own aboard its new A350, opening its Nordic Sky Wi-Fi portal for clothing sales in a cooperative agreement with a well-known Finnish fashion house. The Nordic Sky portal can be accessed by all passengers on the A350, on compatible handheld devices or laptops without any additional fees. The Panasonic system aboard the A350 has a section to purchase fashions from the spring and summer 2016 collection of Makia. Finnair currently has three A350s and will also install Wi-Fi on the rest of its Airbus fleet, starting this year. Finnair develops its Wi-Fi portal in cooperation with the Finnish tech company Reaktor. The Nordic Sky-Fi system does not require a dedicated app and is a web-based service that

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can operate without and Internet connection throughout the A350 aircraft. “Reaktor has also been involved on the Finnair mobile app project and the A330 and A340 IFE renewal project,” said Harri Valkama, Manager, Inflight eCommerce and IFEC. “From the Nordic Sky Wi-Fi you can now also book an airport taxi, book destination services (tours, dinners, concert tickets) and rent a car from the destination. More retail partners will be coming soon.” Cabforce Taxi Service can be booked from the A350s at least two hours before landing. After the booking, passengers will have a driver meet them at the airport for a ride to the final destination. Finnair uses a company called Viator Destination Services for booking side trips, dinner cruises, and concert tickets.  Passengers purchasing the Makia clothing can have the products delivered to the purchaser’s home. Finnair gets a commission from the clothing purchases.

Skateboard models take a break from filming during a promotion for the Match Made in HEL skateboarding show in 2014. A fashion show on the airport’s runway is set for May 24

The offices of the clothing company, Makia are located in what is the old worker district of Helsinki, also known at Moterosso. The company offices are next door to the city’s shipyards. Makia has developed a line of durable clothing designed to handle the extreme weather of northern Europe. The company’s logo is the 19th century lighthouse of Harmaja. “Our cooperation with Makia is an example of the future of on-board shopping,” said Jarkko Konttinen, Vice President, and Product Development at Finnair in the February announcement of the new service. “Our acclaimed Nordic Sky Wi-Fi portal offers a unique way to our customers to shop Makia clothes while on board our A350 aircraft. We’re happy to introduce a top Finnish brand to our international customers: Makia’s fresh and timeless clothing design suits well to Finnair brand identity.”


AMENITIES : FORMIA FORMIA’s showroom in Bangkok

BEST IN SHOW One of the more visually appealing onboard offerings, the inflight amenity kit is just as useful on display as it is in the hands of a passenger, which is why luxury travel amenities supplier FORMIA decided to dedicate a showroom to exhibit these coveted items for both airlines and brands by MELISSA SILVA

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or a luxury travel amenities supplier, the amenity kit is the company’s core, and should be represented as such. What better way for a supplier to demonstrate the very essence of its business than by artistically putting it on display? Much like an artist would in a gallery, luxury travel amenities supplier FORMIA decided to create a space for its amenity kits and related products by way of a showroom. “The showroom was born recently from the constant efforts FORMIA puts into researching the market, analyzing trends, understanding passengers’ behavior and so on,” says Roland Grohmann, FORMIA’s Managing Director. “It was the natural evolution of our interest in looking further than our own niche and screening the market’s patterns and evolution.” Located in Bangkok, the showroom has been a proven asset for FORMIA and an excellent tool for providing a snapshot of the amenities market at any given time. “It allows us to have an instant view of the global market in one place and helps us identify patterns, styles and trends of the amenities currently on board the top 50 airlines in the world.” FORMIA is the only supplier known to date with this type of research and learning space — a space that has allowed the amenity supplier to remain fully focused on and dedicated to, the business of airline amenities, whilst helping develop the market and raise the bar. Not only an instrument for FORMIA’s own benefit — serving as a helpful aid in making successful and meaningful partnerships with airlines — the showroom is also a place FORMIA offers to current airline and brand partners to use at their disposal. In addition, the showroom isn’t merely just for “show” — according to Grohmann, the showroom also operates as an educational space for clients. “We strive to serve our customers in the best possible way and we understand the showroom to be a research and learning center that

FORMIA’s brand partners visiting the showroom will see the travel amenity market from the airline’s point of view — how they are evolving in branding their kits

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AMENITIES : FORMIA Airlines visiting the showroom can see the array of amenity kits currently flying onboard other airlines around the world

is highly beneficial to both airlines and brands.” Airlines visiting the showroom can see the array of amenity kits currently flying onboard other airlines around the world. The showroom also provides a visible correlation between the amenity kits currently onboard and an airline’s Skytrax ranking position. “It’s a great benchmark,” says Grohmann. “It [Skytrax] helps raise the bar and pushes innovation when visualizing the importance of an airline’s

The showroom was developed as a result of FORMIA’s routine market research, trend analysis and its understanding of passenger behavior

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ranking when it comes to standing out in a crowd.” It is not only airlines that benefit from visiting the showroom; for FORMIA’s brand partners, visiting the showroom presents an advantageous opportunity to see the travel amenity market from the airline’s point of view — how they are evolving in branding their amenity kits, what type of brands are of interest, and if there are regional differences. On the other hand, brands are able to get an understanding of their competitor’s activities in the industry — where they are present on board, and what type of products they feature in their kits. The showroom, which FORMIA will present to its airline partners at the World Travel Catering Expo in Hamburg, is updated on a monthly basis as new kits are launched on board, and also undergoes a major refurbishment yearly in June, coinciding with the annual Skyrax airline ranking announcement. Looking ahead, FORMIA is assessing several plans and ongoing discussions on how to further develop the showroom, as the company believes it holds enormous potential and high appreciation. The option of having a virtual tour of the showroom available on FORMIA’s website is one such plan under assessment; however, there are also other plans that are very much in line with FORMIA’s corporate social responsibility, something the company takes quite seriously. “At FORMIA we are focused on growing our business responsibly — we care about the sustainability of the environment we live in, the customers we serve, the community we live in and the social impact we create,” explains Grohmann. “Integrity is one of our core business values and we practice this in many ways.” In line with these beliefs, FORMIA is actively looking into donating its excess and outdated kits from the showroom to continue its ongoing commitment to operating its business in a socially responsible manner. Currently, FORMIA doesn’t have any plans to open another showroom in a different region in the future and plans to remain focused on further developing the showroom in Bangkok, bringing it to another level perhaps in the form of a partnership to cross feed information, sampling and archiving. “We trust at this time it is more important to focus on further evolving the showroom concept and maximize its benefits,” says Grohmann. “We are honored to host airlines and brand partners from all over the world in Bangkok, the landmark of Asian hospitality.”


THE DESTINATION FOR THE AIRCRAFT INTERIORS INDUSTRY. Aircraft Interiors Expo 2016 5-7 April 2016, Hamburg Messe, Germany The global market leader for the world’s aircraft interiors industry. Aircraft Interiors Expo is the launch pad for cabin programmes showcasing tomorrow’s designs, in-flight entertainment, connectivity and passenger services. Register online for your FREE place today www.aircraftinteriorsexpo.com Organised by:

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ADVERTISING ONBOARD One example of the Avia Carré Ecoline carpeting from ege and Leki Aviation

a blank CANVAS

Airlines and companies have long contemplated the potential of reaching passengers through display advertising inflight. And though they have tread carefully, messages in parts of the cabin are showing up in various forms by RICK LUNDSTROM

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sk Jens Klein, Head of Aviation and Trains for the Danish carpet company known as ege what makes up a high-quality airline carpet, and his answer covers the various qualities and range of materials that are used from the wools and nylons in various weaves and patterns that are found in airlines around the world. Toxicity and flammability compliance is one of the areas where there is little to no room for flexibility. Beyond that, airlines have a number of options. However, one of the discussions that inevitably comes up in each and every visit with a potential customer is the cost. Carpeting needs to be replaced regularly on an aircraft and the expense is naturally one that an airline would like to minimize. So ege, along with its partner, Leki Aviation is bringing to this year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo a solution that involves helping an airline save money on installations by turning the aircraft floor into advertising space using the latest printing technology. Brand-conscious airlines have been slow to accept the possibility of using advertising as a source of revenue. Ever concerned about how messages would be perceived by passengers, they have often chosen to leave behind a vast potential to tap into the consciousness of their captive audience and earn some revenue. However, when the first wave of low-cost carriers began adopting the practice, they have become slightly more receptive to the idea, and the evidence can be found in places like the airline tray table that sits in front of passengers for hours at a time.

New technology, new possibilities

The carpet company ege first exhibited at the Aircraft Interiors Expo in 2015. They will be back this year, in partnership with Leki on a new 80  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

product called Avia Carré Ecoline which opens up possibilities with the help of a tufted loop pile construction with a 100% recycled material called Polyamide. The line is combined with a patented process called Millitron® that embeds a custom-designed image deep into the carpet. The two Danish companies are planning to have samples available in Hamburg and say the possibilities for airlines using the product could range from logos, to row numbers. Using the Millitron technology, even pictures can be reproduced in a carpet with speed, precision and durability. The companies say that orders for the product can be placed in quantities as small as 200 square meters. Custom designs can be produced in a couple days and the lead time for delivery can be as short as four weeks. However, Klein tells PAX International that the two companies are very aware that selling the concept will take some doing in some cases. Airlines are constantly concerned about alienating passengers with advertising messages. The two companies will also have to assure potential customers that the images will retain through the life of the carpet. Some potential customers, Klein said, simply may not like having their logo under someone’s foot. “You need to change some mindsets,” he said. But the partners appear ready for the challenge, and one of the ways that could be effective would be for airlines to avoid the costly installation process by passing it on to a company interested in getting a message out through the airline cabin. The companies have created some mockups and a product for a charter airline in Brazil for the FIFA World Cup football tournament. The carpeting touts the event and has a logo for Coca-Cola. One of the qualities that Leki Aviation saw in the Avia Carré


RAIL SERVICES : VIRGIN TRAINS

LAKES AND FOREST

Virgin Trains is catering to the its first class passengers’ desire for premium products from the start, with a selection of locally produced spirits served in one of the UK’s most important points of origin by RICK LUNDSTROM

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uston Station in London is an embarkation point on the Western Coast Line that links the capital city to several of the country’s population centers before terminating in Glasgow and nearby Edinburgh. On a given day thousands of passengers leave the station on one of several private rail lines that stop in the major cities of Manchester, Birmingham and Liverpool carrying on through some of the most beautiful parts of the country. There, tourists flock by the millions per year seeking out the rolling hills and lakes. Along the way, passengers have the chance to sample local cuisine aboard railroads such as Virgin Trains which, over the years has endeavored to feature some of the products on its menus. However, the railroad’s desire to deliver the taste of the region starts earlier, in its First Class lounge in Euston, where Virgin Trains late last year began treating passengers to premium spirits, some of which place the category of “small batch” into a whole different light. The prime example is the December inclusion of Forest Gin, the product of carefully sourced ingredients from a husband-and-wife operation that started last year as a hobby; and will soon be growing in a small distillery that that plans to open later this year. Karl and Lindsey Bond are in charge of the distillation, bottling, management,

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sales and shipping of the gin, filled in stylish porcelain bottles. The couple carries on much of the work in their home, and produces only 80 bottles per batch, two batches per week. Though small (Karl Bond says it could be the smallest distillery in the country) Forest Gin has some high-powered friends. High-end retail operations like Harvey Nichols in London featured the product on its shelves where it sold “ridiculously well” said Bond. From there, Forest Gin was featured on episode of the BBC television series Countryfile. Now the gin is served on the tables of Heston Blumenthal’s Hinds Head restaurant in Bray and Jason Atherton’s restaurant in London’s Soho. Operations are still very much hands on at Forest Gin and very much organic and close to home. The couple sources local suppliers for juniper and coriander seeds and look elsewhere for superior quality vanilla pods and licorice root. They take to the countryside for wild bilberries, ferns, wildflowers, moss and tree bark. The product is distilled in a high-elevation spring in the Peak district that also bottles Buxton spring water. The area’s water was once used for silk production because the softness was good for the finishing process. Once distilled, the product is packaged in a decorative bottle of English porcelain before it is sent to Euston Station for Virgin Trains passengers. When the company’s new distillery is

The Lakes distillery products served at Virgin Trains’ Euston Station on the year old company awards.

finished this year, Bond said there are plans to grow the product and ship it worldwide. They currently ship two batches of the product to the United States, and others to Spain and China. Also found among the premium bottles at Virgin Train’s Euston Station Lounge are the products of The Lakes distillery, a company that is also eyeing the premium market, but with the sophisticated approach of building a loyal customer base with the help of social media. Two products were brought into the


RAIL SERVICES : VIRGIN TRAINS lounge in December from The Lakes Distillery: The Lakes vodka and The ONE, which is a blend of British, Scotch and Irish whiskys. The company also produces a Lakes Gin and is aging its first batch of single malt whisky that will be ready for sales in two years. All are wrapped in a contemporary packaging design that won the year old company awards. Like Forest Gin, Lakes Distillery relies on local botanicals such as juniper to make its products and water sourced from the River Derwent, just 150 meters away. Already up with the largest whisky distillery in England, The Lakes has invested £7 million (US$9.7 million) into its operations bringing in handmade copper stills and attracting more than 20,000 visitors to its Cumbria operations. Paul Currie, Founder and Managing Director at The Lakes Distillery said the company supplies approximately 200 cases of the two products to Virgin Trains per year and is keen to get the product among the rail line’s onboard service offering. Now, however one of his focuses is to build a following for the company’s products in a distinctly modern way.

“There is so much based on digital marketing and that is where our focus is,” Currie tells PAX International. “The traditional ways of old-fashioned advertising is beginning to disappear. It is all about building a community of fans which is what we are doing well with.” For Virgin Trains the commitment to the two companies is part of its pledge to bring products from the areas that passengers cans see outside the windows as they make their way up the West Coast Line. “It is great to introduce these products into our First Class portfolio at the end of a year which has seen us launch fresh milk from our local supply on our services as well as tea from Manchester, cheese from a small farm in Goosnargh near Preston, biscuits from Glasgow and a bespoke sugar bowl designed by a local potter in Stoke on Kent,” said Amanda Smit, Head of Catering at Virgin Trains in the announcement of the two new spirits suppliers at Euston Station. For Currie, such an effort is very much fitting in with a movement beyond acquisition of premium products and on to a passengers’ desire for something memorable.

“It is said that people have enough stuff in life,” he said. “They have got phones and television and whatever. They are looking for experiences. And the same with the products they are buying: to enjoy food and drink and they want an experience with that food and drink.”

Among the ingredients in Forest Gin is local moss. The product is packaged in English porcelain bottles

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RAIL CATERING : EUROSTAR

SURPASSING

EXPECTATIONS As Europe’s leading high-speed rail operator, Eurostar ensures it is constantly on point with its food & beverage menus – with the help of a French celebrity chef by MARY-JANE PITTILLA

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rotein pots, pressed juices, caramel latte - the latest must-eat food and beverage trends trip off the tongue of Eurostar’s Catering Product and Service Manager, Yann Bayeul, as he describes the food service developments at Europe’s leading highspeed rail operator. Eurostar transports leisure and business passengers to destinations as diverse as Paris, Brussels and Provence – but these often-affluent travelers are united in one thing: they know all about nutrition and have high expectations of their food and drink. And Bayeul, a dynamic insight into the vegetarian menus and more balanced meals – it’s Frenchman, knows this well, as he’s responsible for creating some 200 a really important part of passengers’ expectations,” Bayeul tells different meals per season. PAX International. “The vegetarian meal is becoming far more The menus change twice a year: the winter menu starts in October, important overall.” while the summer offering begins in May, and there are six rotations To this end, Raymond Blanc, the Michelin-starred celebrity chef changing every week. The menu offered to each passenger depends who has worked with Eurostar as its Business Premier Culinary on the time of day – and the season. Bayeul says it is important for Director for more than three years, has been reviewing the vegetarian the food to remain in season. And special dietary requirements play menu, in order to bring it up to the same standard as the other menus. a key role, as more and more passengers demand such menu choices. “Previous vegetarian menus could have been spinach and ricotta, for Eurostar offers some 10 different options, namely vegetarian, vegan, example, but we need to offer the same level of recipe and quality as children’s, kosher, halal, low fat, low-salt, diabetic, gluten-free and our other meals, with the same presentation,” explains Bayeul, who dairy-free. calls the whole process “reinventing” the vegetarian meal. The winter menu that commenced on October 15, 2015 has a fresh As an example of a vegetarian option, Bayeul cites a cauliflower focus on the vegetarian option, where passengers now have great dish cooked and cut in three ways, based on seeds, pulses, spices, purée, couscous and thin slices of cauliflower. expectations, according to Bayeul. Bayeul speaks enthusiastically about Blanc’s hands-on contribu“Over the past year we have done lots of research and consumer tion to Eurostar’s food service. “Raymond Blanc is very involved in what we do — in designing the Business Premier (first class) menus and defining the recipes, for example. He has contributed in every way — in the kitchen, in our reviews, and in our changes. He’s as passionate as we are about offering high quality for our customers.” It’s going to be a busy year ahead. The catering team is working on reviewing the afternoon meal and the café gourmand experience. The menu of the day is constantly changed, and now the afternoon meal is coming under the microscope. In mid-afternoon, meat and charcuterie are offered, along with what Bayeul describes as “gourmandises treats,” consisting of three mignardises (petits fours), instead of dessert. “A treat is very important for our customers. They look at the nutritional aspect, but they still want chocolates!” For Eurostar’s Business Premier passengers, the catering team is reviewing every detail. This is an ongoing process that ensures customer choice is taken into account. An innovative development for 2016 is Café Metropole – a new, Yann Bayeul says his in-house brand for Standard Class travelers, introduced in October passengers are increasingly 2015. This café-style experience is offered on Eurostar’s new trains. A interested in vegetarian options chiller cabinet allows passengers to “grab and go,” says Bayeul, and

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RAIL CATERING : EUROSTAR

Raymond Blanc has the Eurostar’s celebrity chef for three years

to touch and feel the product. “It’s the whole experience of the bar, with bar-style tables, where people can sit or stand with their friends. Here, we offer great quality snacks, meals, salads, drinks, delicious coffee, and treats to our travelers en route”. He continues: “It’s an ongoing development process. I’ve just come back from a tasting session for homemade hot dishes in pots, as nutrition is so important for our customers. They want healthy options, so we have introduced pressed juices, in flavors like cucumber, spinach, apple and kale, for detox.” A new range of coffees has been introduced onboard with a beanto-cup coffee machine, where customers are served a wide range of options, such as latte, cappuccino, and mocha. “This coffee machine is not self-service, as excellent customer service is very important for Eurostar, and we want people to interact with the staff, who are very knowledgeable,” notes Bayeul. Alongside the healthy pressed juices are superfood salads, featuring foodie ingredients such as quinoa. This summer, the company is launching protein pots – an on-trend food development that provides energy without carbohydrate, such as spinach with salmon. A highlight of the Café Metropole experience on the new trains is the recent introduction of an entertainment portal. This portal allows customers to see the menu options from their seat, accessing the information via their own smartphone or tablet. A major development for Eurostar is the refurbishment of its Business Premier lounges. Bayeul has been working closely with Raymond Blanc on the project, looking not only at the products Eurostar offers to its customers but also on the way they are presented. Bayeul says: “This year, we will unveil the new Business Premier lounge in Paris, which is a huge project for us. We are working very closely with Raymond to design the new lounge and, of course, the menus to offer our Business Premier customers the best possible experience.” Bayeul is very clear about what he wants to do from a food and beverage perspective. “I want to transform the customer experience by the end of the year,” he enthuses. Other new developments in the lounges include seasonal canapés, offering healthy options. In addition, there is more rotation, twice a week, from Paris to London, offering petits fours and chocolate treats, and healthy options. For the latter, the catering team has addressed modern-day consumer concerns about where food comes from, and the local nature of the produce used. Raymond Blanc has worked with the Eurostar team on a range of soups and pressed juices with ginger for a morning pick-me-up, for example. “The food in our lounges is constantly evolving, with an emphasis on healthy snacks and salad to match our customers’ high

expectations,” says Bayeul. Eurostar’s coffee offering has been revisited, as it’s a vital part of many passengers’ experience, observes Bayeul. Consumers are now asking for different flavors and types, such as flat white, coffee with caramel and vanilla latte. As well as choice, they also want a quality, big-brand coffee. The subject of sustainability is an ever-present part of Eurostar’s – and Raymond Blanc’s – ethos. Sustainable produce with local provenance is always top of mind. Produce is local to the country of departure, whether it’s the UK, France or Belgium. Both Blanc and Eurostar are partners of the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA), which offers Michelin-style accreditation for food service operators. Eurostar was the first transport provider to receive SRA accreditation as a Two-Star Sustainability Champion for its commitment to sourcing local and sustainably produced ingredients and for pursuing a socially and environmentally responsible approach. The SRA logo is printed on the menu cards. “We don’t underestimate our customers when it comes to our sourcing policy. They always want to know: What’s on my plate? Is the chicken free-range?” says Bayeul. The company’s sustainable practices also span food packaging, waste and recycling, and energy and the environment.

Celebrating 21 years with in-house gin Some may celebrate milestone events with Champagne, but Eurostar has turned to the resurgent gin category to mark its 21st anniversary. The cross-Channel train operator has created, distilled and introduced its own gin in partnership with celebrity chef and Eurostar Business Premier Culinary Director Raymond Blanc. Toujours 21 is offered to Business Premier passengers in the lounge, and seeks to celebrate Eurostar’s heritage, and its British and French roots. The resulting spirit contains distinctive ingredients that are local to each of the two countries, namely French botanicals and classic British floral scents. As an example, the train travels to Provence, a region of southern France known for its lavender fields, so the gin has a lavender note. Honey produced by Eurostar’s own bees is also a key feature. Eurostar Catering Product & Service Manager Yann Bayeul was also involved in creating the new product. “We wanted to create a blend of France and the UK, and their cultures – that’s what Eurostar is all about. We are very proud of it.” He also notes that Blanc is a French national resident in the UK and was therefore the ideal partner to design the product, which was distilled by UK-based artisan producer Silent Pool Distillers. Unveiled in November 2015, the Toujour 21 is made with lavender notes and honey gin is also available for purchase by Eurostar’s bee colonies online to all customers. www.pax-intl.com  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  85


WHAT’S HOT!

WHAT’S

HOT! Coolike Oshibori Wellness towel

Company Name: Coolike-Regnery Company Location: Bensheim, Germany Description: ‘Oshibori’ stands for the Far Eastern relaxation tradition. Coolike-Regnery’s Coolike Oshibori Wellness fine terry towel is saturated with well-balanced ingredients. Applied on the face, neck, arms or legs, it provides relaxation and revitalization. The towel can be heated in a microwave oven before application. The XXL sachet has a zip-fastener so that the Oshibori towel can be enjoyed several times. The towel is available with aloe vera or with an exclusive men’s fragrance. Further fragrances are available upon request. The customizable packaging offers space for a corporate logo. Visit Coolike-Regnery at stand 1C31

Company Name: FORMIA Company Location: Hong Kong, China Description: FORMIA, the international guest amenity and hospitality specialist, has been supplying Brussels Airlines with new onboard amenity kits featuring the well-known, luxury bag brand, Mandarina Duck since late last year. For the past year, FORMIA has provided the airline with bespoke Brussels-branded amenity kits and this new development represents the first time the luxury Mandarina Duck brand has been onboard an airline amenity program. Two different, specially designed Mandarina Duck bags are offered, varying for inbound and outbound flights. Each bag contains a variety of comfort items and cosmetics from the renowned FACE Stockholm brand, synonymous of natural, simple and clean beauty. Visit FORMIA at stand 4C20 86  |  PAX INTERNATIONAL  |  MARCH/APRIL 2016

Qantas Premium Economy Kit

Company Name: Watermark Products Company Location: London, Hong Kong, Sydney Description: Watermark Products has collaborated with two renowned Australian companies — Qantas and Country Road — to design and supply Qantas’s new Premium Economy Kit. The kit aims to complement Qantas’s authentic Australian service, offering its premium economy customers both indulgence and functionality. Launched onboard in January 2016 on Australia Day, the bag design features Country Road’s signature black and white gingham print and contains travel essentials. “The collaboration with Country Road complements our authentic Australian service and sees our continued support of all things Australian,” says Con Athas, Manager Customer Service Experience, International Customer Experience, Qantas. Visit Watermark Products at stand 4E29

Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Company Name: Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio Company Location: Marsciano, Italy Description: Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio’s extra virgin olive oil is a pleasure to both look at and taste. Ideally combined with food, it enhances the taste of every dish. This distinctive olive oil is the result of a centuries-old tradition in olive oil making in central Italy, combining traditional methods with a modern and environmentally friendly approach. In 2009, the estate obtained the certificate ISO 14064 as the first farm with zero CO2 emissions in the world. It is bottled in small glass bottles and available with different flavorings. Visit Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio at stand 1E30


WHAT’S HOT! Ministro® Flask (1.5L)

Company Name: Malton Inflight Company Location: Shanghai, China Description: After months of research and feedback from major airlines looking for a better serving flask that is safer, easy-to-use and compact-to-stow, Malton Inflight, in collaboration with a leading inflight product design-house in London, developed the Ministro® Flask (1.5L). Featuring a very “user-friendly” lid, which is quick and easy to screw-on, Ministro® also features design suggestions from Emirates who became the product’s launch customer. Lasting up to three times longer than other flasks because of its special size and shape, Ministro® can be safely and tidily stowed away. “Caterers like it because with its wide-open neck, it is very easy to clean and six pieces fit perfectly into a standard unit, while passengers appreciate that the flask doesn’t drip and tea and coffee stays piping hot,” says Gordon Oakley, Malton’s CEO.

Sorrentina & Caruso Hand Held Hot Snacks illy Unique Aroma

Company Name: Group SOI Company Location: Rome, Italy Description: Group SOI is pleased to introduce its new Sorrentina & Caruso Hand Held Hot Snacks. Made with semolina flour and naturally leavened dough, fresh mozzarella cheese and San Marzano tomatoes, these stone oven hot snacks celebrate the unique taste of authentic Neapolitan pizza. Caruso flavors include Tomato & Mozzarella, Tomato & 4 cheese, and Basil Pesto & Vegetables; while Sorrentina flavors include Tomato & Grilled Vegetables, Tomato & Mozzarella cheese and Chicken & Pepper. Also new is Group SOI’s Live Oil brand of vegan dressings, using 100% Italian extra virgin olive oil infused with natural essential oils in Black Pepper, Coriander, Sage, Fennel, and Cumin flavors, and its Fruit Balsamic Vinaigrettes Dressings and International Sauces in Fig, Papaya, Mango and Soy Sauce flavors. Visit Group SOI at stand 4C28

Best of Both Worlds Pillow

MINIBITE Cereal Bar – Apricot & Yoghurt

Company Name: AMI Inflight Inc. Company Location: Santa Monica, California Description: Unique Aroma from illy is described as perfect, whichever way you want your coffee — on the ground, or in the air; espresso, filter or instant. Unique Aroma is composed of nine distinct highest-order Arabica coffees spanning four continents. The result is a balanced coffee with illy’s signature taste and aroma. Visit AMI Inflight Inc. at stand 1C77

Company Name: Intex Comfort Products Company Location: Zhejiang, China with offices in the UK and USA Description: Intex is presenting its pillow innovation designed for Business and First Class cabins. The pillow offers customers the best of both worlds — the luxury of feather and its ability to maintain shape after use, and polyester-fill, which is lightweight and soft. It comprises two chambers — the inner chamber is filled with feathers, giving the pillow a luxury feel, and can be plumped up, while the outer chamber is filled with high-memory polyester hollow fiber fill, for softness and comfort. The polyester fill helps keep the weight of the pillow down, and is less expensive than feathers. The pillow is available in a range of fabric outers, including cotton, polycotton and polyester. Visit Intex Comfort Products at stand 1B20

Company Name: MINIBITE by Hoppe Company Location: Tilburg, Netherlands Description: The successful line of MINIBITE cereal bars has been extended with the addition of a third variety: apricot with yoghurt. Each 25-gram (0.9 ounce) bar is full of high-fiber multigrain flakes and natural dried apricot pieces. The rich yoghurt drizzle has been added for extra indulgence, although each bar is only 104 calories, making it a healthy snack option. KLM has selected the bars to be a part of its long-haul snack services starting this month. MINIBITE snacks are ideal for snack boxes, basket services, movie snacks or quick bites in between meals. Visit MINIBITE by Hoppe at stand 1J10

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WHAT’S HOT! Easy Open Airsickness Bag

Company Name: Global Inflight Products (GIP) Company Location: Redmond, Washington Description: Global Inflight Products’ newly developed Easy Open Airsickness Bag easily allows fingers to stay on the outside, protecting passengers and flight attendants from contamination. Quick and easy to use, leak-proof (great to use for heating baby bottles) and available with a square or pinched bottom, the Easy Open Airsickness Bag can be easily customized with a logo. Visit Global Inflight Products at WTCE stand 1J20

Steak Pie and Chips

Company Name: Green Gourmet Company Location: Gloucestershire, United Kingdom Description: UK-based inflight food innovator Green Gourmet has introduced a new brand and product collection that includes Steak Pie and Chips. Made with classic short-crust pastry, tender chunks of British beef and chestnut mushrooms, Steak Pie and Chips is served with a portion of lightly seasoned, golden chunky chips. Visit Green Gourmet at stand 1E21

Just Fries

Company Name: Snackbox To-Go Company Location: Elburg, Holland Description: After developing unique fries for preparation in microwave, combi-ovens and high-speed ovens, Holland-based Snackbox To-Go developed Just Fries for airline ovens. Golden brown in color, low in fat, allergen-free and baked in sunflower oil, Just Fries has a long holding time and becomes crispy much faster when compared to standard oven fries. The fries are packed in a special snack box designed to go straight into the oven, which means no handling and no contact with the product itself is required. After heating, the snack box can be used to serve the product to the passenger. Visit Snackbox To-Go at stand 1H15

Alessi for Delta Air Lines Meal Serviceware

Company Name: Buzz Products Company Location: Melbourne, Los Angeles, Milan, Shanghai, Hong Kong Description: Alessi has partnered with Delta Air Lines on major enhancements to the airline’s serviceware, drawing on the brand’s celebrated designers. Customers in Delta One and First Class will enjoy a bespoke and inspirational line of plates, glasses, flatware and service products. This is the first time Alessi’s signature stylish, functional and modern designs will appear inflight with a major airline. Over the next several months, Delta’s service teams, in collaboration with designers from Alessi, will design and test the serviceware inflight before rolling it out in mid-2017. Visit Buzz Products at stand 4E40

RPET Collection

Company Name: Bayart Innovations Company Location: Villeneuve d’Ascq, France Description: Bayart Innovations has introduced a new collection of amenity pouches in recycled PET. RPET is an eco-friendly material, as it has a 50% lower carbon footprint than organic cotton, 90% lower than nylon, and 75% lower than polyester. Using RPET saves energy, reduces oil consumption, reduces waste and minimizes the use of non-renewable resources. Visit Bayart Innovations at stand 4C20

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WHAT’S HOT!

FlyFit Carton Packs

Company Name: Vitalit Laboratories Int. Company Location: Amsterdam, the Netherlands Description: FlyFit’s healthy onboard drinks range has been extended with new flavors. The carton packs contain super-fruits and a mix of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Available in handy Tetra Pak 125ml portion packages, the formulation is said to revitalize the body to counter the stressful effects of traveling. The drink can also be offered as a combo with a FlyFit mini bar and also paired with food offerings. It can be used in snack boxes for pre-arrival service, breakfast service, delay service, and as a kid’s snack. Visit FlyFit at stand 1G18

ID-1211 Custom Earbuds

Wood Business Class Coat Hanger

Company Name: Kaelis Company Location: Madrid, Spain Description: A best-selling and patented product, Kaelis’ business class hanger is now being offered in wood. An elegant time-saver, designed to simplify First and Business Class passenger boarding and reduce the chances of misplacing passengers’ belongings, the hanger has two built-in wheels. Simply turn the wheels to enter the passenger’s seat number before hanging up their coat or jacket. The hanger eliminates the need for crew to collect passengers’ boarding passes and is offered in two material options: wood and plastic. Visit Kaelis at stand 4A20

Company Name: InflightDirect Company Location: Naples, Florida Description: InflightDirect has launched a new line of inexpensive, lightweight custom earbuds that offer quality sound reproduction — thanks to its Neodymium element — and noise reducing eartips. With three independent molded parts on each side, the new ID-1211 earbuds can be customized with different color combinations and a customer’s logo on each earpiece. “Typically, customers that purchase earbuds only have the option of their logo on the poly bag or pouch that holds the earbud. The ID-1211 earbuds allow for the customers’ logo to be printed on the back side of each earpiece,” says Thomas G Mockler, Inflight Direct President. Visit InflightDirect at stand 1E18 Olive Oil & Sea Salt Hors D’Oeuvre Crackers Company Name: Partners Crackers Company Location: Kent, Washington Description: Fresh and crisp, Partners’ Olive Oil & Sea Salt Hors D’Oeuvre Crackers are the perfect onboard snack. Packaged in 0.75 ounce, four-piece individual serving sizes, these lightly salted hors d’oeuvre crackers are certified kosher and made from high quality non-GMO ingredients. With a hearty, crisp texture and subtle flavor, Olive Oil & Sea Salt Hors D’Oeuvre Crackers can be paired with fresh fruit and cheeses, and their compact size and reasonable price point allow for multiple onboard applications.

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ASSOCIATION NEWS David Scowsill was regional general manager Asia/Pacific for British Airways from 1993 to 1997

Jobs by millions made in travel and tourism

T

he World Travel and Tourism Council has launched its annual Economic Impact Report 2016 in March with findings that showed in 2015 travel and tourism accounted for 7.2 million jobs to the global economy and contributed over US$7.2 trillion in GDP. The Economic Impact Reports, the group’s flagship annual research, provide economic data on the contribution of the travel and tourism sector on a global level as well as for 184 countries and 24 regions. The report will be part of the group’s Annual Global Summit April 6-7 in Dallas. “Despite uncertainty in the global economy and specific challenges to travel and tourism last year, the sector grew by 3.1%, contributing a total of 9.8% to the global GDP,” said David Scowsill, President and CEO of the World Travel and Tourism Council. “Travel & Tourism also supported a total of 284 million jobs in 2015, an increase of 7.2 million, which means it now supports, directly and indirectly, one in eleven jobs on the planet.” Terror attacks, disease outbreaks, currency fluctuations and geopolitical challenges have impacted the sector at a country or regional level, but travel and tourism at the global level continues to produce another robust performance, he added. Country growth travel and tourism direct contribution to gross domestic product growth outpaced overall GDP country growth in 127 of the 184 countries covered by the research. Countries where travel and tourism clearly outperformed the wider economy in 2015 were Iceland, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, and Uganda. The growth of the sector is stimulated by a worldwide increase in middle-class income households, an aging population, which tends to travel more, and growing connectivity between destinations, making travel more accessible and affordable. Regional performance all regions of the world showed growth in total travel and tourism contribution to GDP in 2015. Southeast Asia was the fastest growing region with growth of 7.9% followed

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by South Asia, which grew 7.4%. Middle East grew 5.9%, Caribbean 5.1%, Sub-Saharan Africa 3.3%, North America 3.1%, Europe 2.5%, Northeast Asia 2.1%, Latin America 1.5% and North Africa 1.4%. The WTTC predicted that worldwide travel will grow 3.5% in 2016 and is again expected to outpace global economic growth for the sixth consecutive year. Security concerns, border policies, oil prices, the strength of the U.S. dollar relative to other currencies, and other macroeconomic developments will continue to influence travel trends in 2016 and beyond. Nevertheless, over the next decade, the WTTC estimates travel and tourism is expected to continue to outpace the world economy, growing by 4% on average annually.

C A L E N D A R 2016 Aircraft Interiors Expo/World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo April 5-7, Hamburg, Germany. For general inquiries contact AIX at aixhamburg.helpline@reedexpo.co.uk or call +44 208 271 2174 Marine Hotel Association 31st Anniversary Conference and Trade Show, April 10-12 Hyatt Place/Orlando Convention Center, Orlando, Florida. For more information, contact MHA at mha@mhaweb.org or call 415 332-1903 APEX MultiMedia Market, April 18-20 Amsterdam. For more information contact APEX at info@apex.aero or call 212 297–2177 Airline Retail Conference Europe, June 7-8, Olympia Conference Center, London. For more information, contact Martyn McMurray +44 (0)207 092 1284 martyn.mcmurray@terrapinn.com International Flight Services Association Conference and Exhibition, September 19-21, Chicago. IFSA at ifsa@kellencompany.com or call 404 252-3663 APEX EXPO 2016/Future Travel Experience Asia/Aircraft Interiors Expo, October 24-27, Singapore. For more information, APEX at info@apex.aero or call 212 297–2177 


spiriant builds east SPIRIANT expands its global presence in APAC With an ever-growing demand for premium quality onboard equipment in the APAC region, we have expanded our team and innovative capacities to serve you. Our highly committed experts work together to design onboard equipment solutions of highest quality while improving the entire supply chain with our state-of-the art logistics capabilities. Visit us at the LSG Group booth 1G30 (Hall A1) to discover inspiring and creatively designed inflight equipment solutions.

www.spiriant.com


WHEN partners MEET passenger needs

Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s all about connecting the right people, products and possibilities for a unique travel experience: join us to discover how we can work together to create engaging new solutions for your passengers. World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo Hall A1, Booth 1G30 5 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 7 April Hamburg, Germany lsg-group.com

Pax International WTCE March/April 2016  
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