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Sky-high ambition on a plate (3)

By Wang Wen (China Daily)    11:16, October 02, 2013
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Workers prepare and package cooked food for in-flight service at Beijing Xinhua Airport Catering Co Ltd, which has about 15 percent of the in-flight food market in the capital. (Photo/China Daily)

"The business jet operators usually spend three to five times the price on the meal than the normal flights," said Ji Xingzhuo, chairman of Air Taxi (Hong Kong) Business Jet Co Ltd.

Beijing Air Catering Co Ltd supplies most of the meals in his jets, but sometimes he has to provide meals according to passengers' requests, which cost even more, he added.

But insiders said chartered business flights remain limited, and the in-flight meal manufacturers also have ambitions closer to the ground.

E-food Group, which has three companies supplying meals for high-speed trains, received 236.81 percent more income from the railway market in 2012 compared with 2011.

"High-speed rail is already an important client for us and the ground market, such as restaurants and some company canteens, are also our target," Liu said.

Beijing Air Catering, the subsidiary of China National Aviation Holding Group that has a 75 percent market share in the Beijing in-flight meal market, has already received business from some cafe chains, including Starbucks, Costa Coffee and Sculpting in Time.

But the in-flight meal manufacturers have developed quickly thanks to China's soaring air traffic in recent years.

Beijing Air Catering, which was established in 1980, has almost 1 billion yuan in assets and supplies meals for an average of 450 flights every day.

Beijing Xinhua Airport Catering Co Ltd, a subsidiary of HNA Group, the fourth largest airline group in China, also plans to double its workshop area. The company occupies 15 percent market share in Beijing.

"The plan is based on HNA Group's development strategy, since the group's airlines are our main clients," said Xu Hao, general manager of the company.

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(Editor:DuMingming、Gao Yinan)

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