At a time when the food supply chain was disrupted due to the Coronavirus pandemic, Emirates SkyCargo worked rapidly towards restoring its international cargo connectivity during the difficult circumstances. It has grown its network from just around 35 destinations on its freighter aircraft in March to over 130 destinations by early October on both freighter and passenger aircraft.
On the occasion of World Food Day on October 16, the Dubai-based cargo airline released a statement, explaining how it worked towards maintaining the global supply chains for food and other perishables during COVID-19.
As of now, the Emirates aircraft is transporting more than 500 tonnes of food items in its cargo hold in several countries across the world on daily basis.
The statement added that on October 2, Emirates SkyCargo's first freighter flight took off from Mexico's Guadalajara, with its cargo hold carrying several tonnes of avocadoes and other vegetables grown and harvested in Mexico. These farm produce were destined to be on the supermarket shelves in the Middle East and Europe.
In addition, the Emirates has carried out 10 weekly flights in Kenya in October 2020, transporting fresh fruits and vegetables such as avocadoes, mangoes, pineapples and green beans among other commodities from Nairobi airport to other countries across the world. As per the statement, the produce from Kenya is transported to Dubai from where it is distributed to other regional markets in the Middle East, after which it goes to Europe.
From Australia and New Zealand, Emirates flights transport meat and a range of fruits such as watermelon and grapes to various international markets.
Similarly, blueberries from the UK, coconuts and jackfruit from Thailand, mangoes from India, cheese from France and Italy, sweet potatoes from Egypt, salmon from Norway, seafood from Pakistan, cherries from Chile, tropical fruits from Vietnam and bakery products from the Netherlands are among some of the major food items that Emirates' flights transport every day across its wide international network of more than 130 countries spread across six continents.
In the statement, the airline added that with every new destination, it adds one more potential trade line for food items in its wide global network across the world.
"For instance, 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 said in its statement.
In addition, Emirates SkyCargo has also been working in its capacity as a socially responsible carrier in the global fight against COVID-19. During its journeys, it has kept adequate cargo capacity on its widebody aircraft to transport urgent medical supplies and food items to countries in need to combat the pandemic crisis.