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Air India defends move to serve food stocked from India on return flights

'The food is taken from here in India in chillers and then it is heated whenever it has to be used...Catering costs for us are around Rs 600 crore to Rs 800 crore a year' , Air India said

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Air India, Air India headquarters

Days after announced that it had started carrying from for use during the journey back to the country, it clarified on Saturday that any misgiving about the is "unfounded" as it stayed fresh in chillers onboard.

In a statement issued on Twitter, said it "ensures strict compliance to quality checks at every step of its in-flight catering right from its flight kitchen".

"Any misgiving about served is unfounded as food stays fresh in chillers onboard and served piping hot to ensure authentic taste all over our network," it said to allay passengers' concerns regarding in return flights.

The has already started using food items stocked from India during its onward journey to Stockholm, Copenhagen, and Madrid, and use them when returning.

"We are following this practice on our flights up to and not on our longer duration flights to USA," the said.

"Return Catering, done by leading flight kitchens adheres to laid down standards and protocols regarding quality of food. Food uplifted at the country of origin is industry practice favoured by pax (passengers) for its taste, quality and reliability," it said.

Air India's Pradeep Singh Kharola had on Wednesday announced in New Delhi that the has started carrying food from India for use during the journey back to the country, in an attempt to rationalise catering costs on international flights.

"The food is taken from here in India in chillers and then it is heated whenever it has to be used...Catering costs for us are around Rs 600 crore to Rs 800 crore a year. Catering in India is 3-4 times cheaper as compared to catering in the West," he said.

Within the next a few months, will start serving food from India on its flights returning from the Gulf region, he added.

As a cost-cutting measure, Air India decided in July 2017 to not serve to economy class passengers on its domestic flights.

"There are some flights, like the ones going to Gulf, and even some parts of Europe, where it is possible to upload the food here (in India) only. Some work is going on in that direction," Kharola had said.

First Published: Sat, January 12 2019. 20:55 IST
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