Kenya remains an important freighter station for Emirates SkyCargo with 2,000 tonnes of flowers having been airlifted in January this year. Last year, Emirates SkyCargo transported over 46,000 tonnes of flowers across the world with over 24,000 tonnes, originating from Kenya.
Emirates’ cargo manager East Africa, Mr. Saeed Abdulla said : “Flowers, especially roses and carnations are the most hauled products from East Africa by Emirates SkyCargo. We met our seasonal Valentine’s Day flowers demand with our freighter service between Kenya and the Netherlands as well as the Middle East. This year, we deployed two additional freighter services to meet the demand for transport of flowers. As an airline, we have invested heavily in our fleet and infrastructure to deliver fresh flowers to customers across different markets.”
Every day, Emirates SkyCargo transports fresh flowers across its global network of over 155 destinations on board dedicated freighters as well as in the belly hold of passenger aircrafts. The journey of flowers begins on a farm where they are harvested by hand. The freshly harvested flowers are then sorted, arranged in bouquets and hand packed into boxes, which are then loaded on the aircraft. In order to ensure maximum freshness and shelf life, the flowers are maintained in a temperature-controlled environment during the transport process.
In addition, Emirates SkyCargo has designed a specialised three-tiered portfolio of solutions – Emirates Fresh, Emirates Fresh Active and Emirates Fresh Breathe – for airfreighting different kinds of perishable cargo including food items and flowers. In particular, Emirates Fresh Breathe provides ventilated cool chain solutions for fresh cut flowers.
“Since we launched Emirates Fresh in 2017, we have transported around 400,000 tonnes of perishables annually. We believe that the export of perishables helps local economies. As a result, we have been able to stimulate global business partnerships and trade by opening new markets for Kenyan exporters through our flight connections across six continents through Dubai,” said Mr. Abdulla.
Emirates SkyCargo operates Boeing 777 freighters that can carry up to 100 tonnes of cargo. The airline continually offers cargo capacity through its Boeing 777-300ER passenger aircraft that can take up to 23 tonnes of cargo on a full passenger flight. Last year, the air cargo carrier moved close to 2.6 million tonnes of cargo.
In 2020, Emirates SkyCargo is looking forward to facilitating global trade and cargo movement through a combination of innovative product development and investment in ‘fit for purpose’ infrastructure. With Expo 2020 Dubai set to kick off in October 2020, Emirates is working with its partners to provide specialised airfreight services in order to manage the upsurge in movement of goods to and from Dubai.