British Airways To Purposefully Understock Food On All Flights: Why Flyers Could Go Hungry

British Airways To Purposefully Understock Food On All Flights: Why Flyers Could Go Hungry

Image: Mirror

British Airway’s (BA) cost-cutting efforts continue with a new strategy that might leave some flyers grumbling with tummies rumbling…

The business of getting a feed at thirty thousand feet is all too often riddled with unexpected difficulties. United’s ancient business class offering not only includes “coffin seats” but face-to-face seats that can make eating their famous cheesy enchilada a little more intimate than you might like. When it comes to BA themselves, they had a bit of a shocker last week when they served their business class passengers KFC. The only thing worse than a strange eating experiences, however, is not having any food at all…

British Airways has been making efforts to rehabilitate its reputation as a premium carrier after experiencing years of cutbacks under CEOs Willie Walsh and Alex Cruz. However, the airline’s instinct to cut costs is still deeply ingrained, as evidenced by a new initiative that has sparked concern amongst passengers and industry insiders. As reported by View From The Wing, BA is set to deliberately understock the food on all its flights, leaving some flyers at risk of going hungry.

WATCH: To be fair, it might reduce the likelihood of this embarrassing eviction…

While claiming that the new strategy is being rolled out for the benefit of the planet by reducing in-flight wastage, British Airways is really implementing a cost-cutting measure by reducing the amount of food served on board. As revealed in an internal company memo, the airline plans to load fewer meals onto planes than there are passengers, boldly assuming that some passengers will choose to skip meals in favour of getting more sleep.

Historically, the amount of food loaded onto flights has always exceeded the amount consumed, admittedly resulting in vast amounts of food waste. Moving forwards, British Airways plans to create detailed forecasts and models for how much food they’ll need for each flight. However, previous trials aimed at reducing food waste have left some flights without enough meals for all passengers on board, much to the chagrin of those with empty bellies…

This news was shared with View From The Wing by a member of the BA team, and their message read as follows:

“British Airways will… no longer load enough meals for every passenger on certain late-night and early-morning flights… The project’s ultimate goal was to cut down on mountains of food waste that accumulate at the end of every long-haul flight.… [However], previous experiments to reduce food waste at the airline meant customers had to go hungry because there weren’t enough meals for everyone who wanted to eat.”

Anonymous BA Staff, Shared By View From The Wing

This initiative has unsurprisingly caused backlash from customers who expect a certain level of service when flying with a so-called premium carrier. However, this news also serves as an unwelcome reminder that your ticket cost doesn’t actually entitle you to an in-flight meal. As Gary Leff summarises nicely if ominously:

“It only entitles you to food if there’s any left when crew reach your row.”

Gary Leff

It’s important to note that other airlines have also begun loading less food, with many turning to AI to help them better forecast how much they actually need for any given journey. Not only could this be good for the environment but it also saves on the airline’s costs.

Whether BA can strike the oh-so-delicate balance between cost-cutting and customer satisfaction remains to be seen, but rest assured we’ll be watching with eager eyes and grumbling tums.