14 Jan 2016
Cathay Pacific Airways held an event today to showcase its efforts in the area of inflight catering, highlighting the state-of-the-art catering facilities and the complex behind-the-scenes work that goes into meal preparation. From the sourcing of ingredients and menu design, to food preparation and tray setting, Cathay Pacific’s catering team strives to ensure that passengers have an enjoyable inflight dining experience.
Through working closely with its inflight kitchen in Hong Kong – wholly owned subsidiary Cathay Pacific Catering Services (CPCS) –Cathay Pacific’s commitment to quality in ingredient sourcing and food preparation has been widely recognised.
The inflight kitchen at CPCS is one of the largest and most modern inflight kitchens in the world. It employs cutting-edge technology in various aspects of meal production, including omelette-making machines, titling braising machines and Hong Kong’s first automatic tray-setting machine. This advanced technology is not just employed to enhance productivity; it also helps in relation to quality control and maintaining the very high hygiene standards required.
The tray-setting machine is remarkable in that was entirely designed and assembled in Hong Kong. Working at maximum capacity it can set 25 meal carts an hour, or 400 carts per day, which equates to roughly one third of Cathay Pacific’s daily requirements. The machine simplifies manual procedures such as loading dining carts and placing salad bowls and plates on trays, and also helps to minimise the risk of bacterial infection.
The sourcing of ingredients is another vital component of the Cathay Pacific inflight dining experience. Drawing on the expertise of CPCS, Cathay Pacific’s catering team sources ingredients from more than 300 approved suppliers to ensure good provenance and the right taste for the creation of authentic dishes. For example, pork sourced from the acclaimed Dingley Dell in the UK is used in many of the airline’s inflight meals. The farm puts a strong emphasis on the welfare of its pigs, creating a better distribution of fat in the meat and a taste that really stands out.
Cathay Pacific Head of Catering Aaron Claxton said: “At Cathay Pacific, we promise to create a better travel experience for passengers across all points of their journey. In terms of inflight catering, we demonstrate this promise through working closely with the reputable CPCS in crafting and presenting our meals, selecting only top quality and nutritious ingredients.
“Crafting a high quality inflight meal can be more complicated than preparing a feast on the ground. An inflight meal requires various procedures such as chilling and reheating before the final meal is presented to passengers. Our professional catering team has been working hard to ensure the quality of every single step during the meal preparation, and I am sure our passengers will appreciate our passion and effort when they enjoy their meals on board.”