Emirates SkyCargo worked swiftly to restore its international cargo connectivity during the coronavirus, COVID-19, pandemic; growing its network from just around 35 destinations on its freighter aircraft at the end of March to more than 130 destinations by early October on its freighter as well as passenger aircraft.
Currently, around 500 tonnes of food items are transported every day in the cargo hold of Emirates aircraft across the world, Dubai-based cargo airline said in a statement marking the World Food Day, which falls on 16th October each year.
It said that when Emirates SkyCargo’s first freighter flight took off from Guadalajara, Mexico, on the 2nd of October, the cargo hold contained several tonnes of avocadoes and other vegetables grown and harvested in Mexico and destined for supermarket shelves in Europe and the Middle East.
In Kenya, Emirates’ 10 weekly flights in October 2020 from Nairobi airport transport, among other commodities, fresh fruits and vegetables such as green beans, pineapples, mangoes and avocadoes. The produce arrives in Dubai and then gets distributed to other regional markets in the Middle East and onwards to Europe.
Emirates’ flights taking off from Australia and New Zealand carry meat and a range of fruits including grapes and watermelons heading towards international markets.
“Coconuts and jackfruit from Thailand, mangoes from India, sweet potatoes from Egypt, blueberries from the UK, cheese from France and Italy, salmon from Norway, cherries from Chile, seafood from Pakistan, bakery products from the Netherlands and tropical fruits from Vietnam are just a limited selection of the food items that travel every day on Emirates’ flights across its global network of more than 130 destinations across six continents,” read the statement.
“With every new destination, Emirates SkyCargo opens up one more potential trade lane for food products across the world. As an example, Emirates SkyCargo, through its direct flights, helped create a market for tropical fruits from Vietnam in the Middle East and exports of these products increased nearly five-fold in just one year in 2017,” the freighter added.
As a socially responsible carrier, Emirates SkyCargo said that it has ensured that adequate cargo capacity remains available on its widebody aircraft during the COVID-19 pandemic for the transport of urgent medical supplies as well as food items.