, ,

British Airways Cuisine Flies High

The first inflight meal service was served 85 years ago. Paul and Elizabeth chat with Simon Talling–Smith the head of British Airways in North America about the advances in in-flight meals service since then. British Airways has been a leader in creating new menus over the years and also in researching just how food tastes at 35,000 in an airline cabin. You might be surprised. Incidentally it was in 1927 that Imperial Airways, a predecessor to British Airways first served food on a two-hour flight from London to Paris. A male steward dressed in a smart  white  tunic  served  just  ten passengers on the flight. Onboard  was  a  small  cabinet carrying four gills (servings) of whisky, a dozen  bottles  of  lager  beer,  two siphons of sparkling water and twelve assorted bottles of mineral water. They was a packet of sandwiches, some  biscuits  and  one or two thermos flasks of hot water, within which the steward  made  coffee  or  beef  tea  to  nourish the passengers during the flight.  The  service  represented the height of luxury since before this you had to take any food you wanted on the flight yourself. Today, British Airways’ cabin crews serve around 100,000 meals a day. There is a collection of historical information at British Airways’ head office and is open to members of the public. Information about the collection can be found online at www.ba.com/heritage.