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The Problems and Strategies the Aviation Catering Industry Faces

Abstract: Along with the world economic integration process, the aviation market of our country also open to the world. Aviation catering is the one of the elements of aviation services and cost. In terms of aviation catering, generalizing and promoting the traditional dietetic culture of our country, controlling the cost efficiently is a problem the aviation catering faces.

Key words: aviation catering, aviation food, aviation meal

With the rapid growth of the economy and the steady improvement of people’s living standard, the tourism of our country is growing steadily. The successful holding of the 2008 Olympic Games, 2010 Shanghai Expo and Guangzhou Asian Games, and the increasing requirement to airline transportation, our country ushered in the golden age of the air transport industry. Although the aviation food market exist huge potentials, there are still many problems need to be solved, there is a great gap between the aviation catering industry of our country and the international standards. Aviation catering, as the new competition hotspot of aviation food industry, should take the providing of the high-qualified aviation food and the narrowing the gap between our country and the international standards as the imminent problem on the condition of compressing the cost of aviation food cost.

The Developing Situations and Problems of Our Aviation Catering Industry Faces

Currently, the global aviation pantry company is nearly 700 with the gross output of over 6.5 billion. Among the gross output, America, Europe and our country respectively occupy 2 billion, 2.5-2.8 billion and 4 billion. According to statistics and prediction, the civil aviation passengers transport keep the increase speed of double-digit, and increase by the rate of 9.3% in the following 20 years. The prospect of our aviation catering is bright. However, the gap between our country and international standard is comparatively large, so we should take the providing of the high-qualified aviation food and the narrowing the gap between our country and the international standards as the imminent problem.

(1)The Conditions of Our Aviation Foods

Restrained by the industrial feature, the flight-meal enterprise has special intimate relationship with Airline Company. Up to now in china, the main catering resources are the following three types: the catering under the airline company, the catering under the airport, and the independent catering without depending on the either. At present, generally speaking, the outbound flight-meal of national four airline companies are catered by their own companies, and the inbound flight-meal are catered by landing spot. In order to prevent the profit outflow, and to solve the employment problem of airline company staff and their family members, the local airline company is facilitated with the catering company. Under that background, our airline catering is featured with the following characteristics in the current stage:

Rapid market development, fierce competition

In recent 2 or 3 years, the increasing rate of global airline catering market is 2%-3%, our nation’s rate is 5%-6%. The rapid development of China’s airline food industry has raised the fierce competition from airline catering industry. The airline food competition appears the new pattern of collectivization competition, national and international competition.

There are no obligatory rules in the delivery of flight-meal.  The aviation system set no rigid unified requirements for the airline company to provide the flight-meal at present. Different Airline Company caters for different airline routine according to “airline rules”---when the flight come through the lunch or supper time, and the flight time is above 1.5hour (including 1.5h), the flight should deliver dinner to the passengers. If it is within 1.5 hour, only deliver dim sum, such as peanuts, biscuits, etc. As for the hot air like Beijing to Guangzhou, Shanghai to HK, the flight period is less than 1.5 hour, the airline company take out their personal dishes to attract customers, for instance, the roast duck, roasted goose , will become the flight food.

The flight meal becomes diversified from time to time. It is tend to be more verified with the time advanced. The early flight meal is mainly western food. But today’s flight meal is equipped with regional famous food, halal meals and other foreign style meals, which appeal to passengers from different countries.

(2)The Existing Problems of Aviation Catering in Our Country

The aviation catering of domestic market meets cold receptions. According to the survey of the media, 50 percent of the tourists describe the diet with “just-so-so”, 40 percent of the tourists think the diet “not very good”, and the rest of the tourists say the diet is hard to eat. So the waste of the food is terrible. The disposable aviation foods include all the aviation food in the tourist class. Complying with the aviation food qualify guarantee period and the health requirement, the buffet or the hot food only have one to two days qualify-guarantee period. If the period is over two days, the food will be complained by the customers. According to statistics, the discarded aviation foods of airline companies taking off from Chongqin reached millions every year.

There is big gap between aviation food enterprises of our country and the international standard, displaying in the following aspects: the aviation catering skills of our aviation enterprises are still weak; lack of the professional capacity of self innovation; the scale and the frame is relative fragmented.

Although the increasing speed of the civil aviation maintains 5%-6%, the airline companies still face the pressure of compressing cost. Overseas aviation catering company will race to control the Chinese market. In recent years, with the booming of the Asian aviation market, China has already owned the fastest increasing aviation market; much international aviation service company like LSG Sky chefs has already shifted from America and Europe to China and India.

The Strategies of Promoting the Competition of Aviation Catering Industry in Our Country

(1) Realizing the low cost and home style

In recent years, the fast development of civil aviation in our country attracted the attention of the world. With the fierce completion, various aviation enterprises start to seek the strategy of compressing the transportation cost. The followings are the strategies about how to achieve the low cost of the aviation pantry.

Cut down aviation catering cost by creating automatic produce platform and improving the quality of the aviation food. Apply the automatic production line to the traditional manual production, transfer the traditional workshop management model to industrialization manufacturing model, not only can improve the production greatly and save the manpower material resources, but also can guarantee the quality and health of the catering efficiently.

Insure the unblocked of the information in relative session, and adjust the relative session in time and accurately. Build perfect information platform (Kaiya ticketing system, FOC system, ERP system) is to guarantee the standardization, just-in-time and accurate of the catering equipment, improve the overall performance of the aviation compound food.

Establish scientific purchasing system; reduce the procurement cost through the powerful alliances. Formulate scientific and reasonable review system of inviting tenders for suppliers; choose the lowest cost supplier in the premise of quality guarantee. Establish cooperation relationship with the famous enterprises, realize the advantage complementary, improve the overall service quality, reduce the cost instantly.

Take the home style and popular style as objective of the aviation catering. Introduce the popular coarse foods, not only nutrient and healthy, but also economical and practical. According to the survey, a majority of the aviation tourists in our country belong to low and middle class market, so it’s better to simplify the form, reduce the supplementary equipment, in order to save the money for the food popular among the tourists.

(2)The local characteristics and Chinese style catering

 Currently the aviation catering service in our country emphasize on western catering service. It is lake of deep reflection and research in terms of providing the bright, tasty, economical and national characteristics catering. According to the survey, 80 percent of the aviation tourists prefer to choose the Chinese style catering in the domestic airlines and the airlines taking off from China; however, the America and Europe tourists who take the Chinese airline, have little requirement and feeling of freshness to Chinese catering, small number of them choose Chinese catering.

In addition, aviation catering service is not only to provide the right food and beverage for the tourists, but also to create a kind of dietetic culture, making the tourists and airline companies to accept the Chinese culture through the culture atmosphere, choose the airline in our country and improve the take rate of the tourists. In this respect, the catering services have some advantages to choose the Chinese catering regarding the Chinese aviation compound food.

(1) Create Safety and Healthy Circumstances for Aviation Compound Food

Safety and healthy is the tenet of the aviation food enterprises. With the improvement of the living standard, the requirements of the tourists have transferred the attention from the taste and variety of the food to the higher requirement-the safety and health of the food. For instance, whether the food is environmental protection or adaptable to the national standards has been paid much attention by the tourists. So the aviation compound food enterprises must insure the safety and health of the food to make the tourists rest their hearts.

Currently, the aviation compound food industry in our company should not only execute Food Hygiene Law of People's Republic of China, but also the Civil aviation food hygiene standard of the people's Republic of China, this standard have specific regulation to the making of the aviation food, procurement of the raw materials, storage, transportation, the equipment of the machine offerings and the installed. The quality-controlling departments of the aviation companies inspect the process, the health supervision bureau of the airport supervise uniformly. In addition, the most authoritative food enterprises quality controlling system HACCP is to control the key point during the food processing, in order to prevent the appearance of the unhealthy food.

(2)Develop the People-oriented Service Focusing on the Tourists

Aviation catering, which is a traditional buyer market, leech on to the development of the aviation transportation, its customer group have many choices in picking the aviation services. If we want to win in the competition of aviation catering industry, we should attach great importance to the marketing management; develop the people-oriented service focusing on the tourists, in order to promote the service level.