Qantas Reveals the Secret to its In Flight Food

12th May 2015

Preparing an in-flight meal is often a hit-or-miss. Most passengers put lack of meal choices in planes or even bad-tasting food in the top of their complaints about a specific airline.

Truth be told, it's not that easy preparing a meal for people flying thousands of kilometers above ground. What would normally be a rather pleasant dish loses about 30% of its taste and flavor once it gets to the hungry traveler. Traditionally, carriers would put a lot of salt into their in-flight dishes in order to mask the fact they're basically tasteless, but that can often lead to health problem for certain passengers.

How does Qantas do it?

Australian carrier Qantas reveals just what it takes to plan and prepare their in-flight meals. At any given time, this airline has 220 meal options just on their domestic network. This means passengers never get the same meal twice.

For example, in the business class, Qantas offers six different menus for each of four main meals - breakfast, lunch, dinner and supper. Not only that, but they also offer three different variations for each meal.

The meal planning schedule is managed centrally. What this means is that menus get moved across the Qantas' network on a weekly basis. The airline even goes so far as to make sure it doesn't switch meals between ports on a common traveler route, like between Melbourne and Sydney.

Helen Gray, Head of National Product and Service Delivery at Qantas said:

"This means a business customer flying from Melbourne to Sydney on Monday; Sydney to Adelaide on Wednesday; and Adelaide back to Melbourne on Friday, will see a different selection of menu choices on each of these flights. On some morning flights between Perth and the east coast our cabin crew can even make freshly scrambled eggs in the business cabin."

She continues:

"By the time your meal gets to your seat, whether you're travelling in economy or business, every dish has been designed, tasted or influenced by Neil Perry's Rockpool consulting team at the industrial kitchen in Qantas' Mascot headquarters."

To ensure their passengers are getting excellent food in their jets Qantas is redesigning its in-flight menus and adding new recipes, flavors and ingredients every six months.