Airline Catering Supply Chain
Complexity and uncertainty in the airline catering business is high. Dealing with many different classes of products from meals to blankets to equipment, the supply chain must ensure that when a plane takes off, everything is on board. Not only must the in-flight services provide for customers in the air, but storage space within the plane is also used to reposition supplies of service items around the network. The complexity and difficulty of managing a moving supply network cannot be understated. And, unfortunately, frequent changes in flight schedules, as well as high-cost pressures, make the task of managing a cost-efficient supply chain very difficult.
Airline catering is further complicated by managing food safety and quality issues. As airlines try to scale back on free offerings, customers demand high quality and choice in exchange for in-flight purchases. Meeting these needs requires airlines to innovate new offerings, packaging, and technology to deliver customer satisfaction while capturing the data necessary to plan for the future.