Vegetarian and Vegan Fliers Winning Important Battle Over In-Flight Menu Options

VANCOUVER – USA News Group – Rebounding from the previous slowdowns, the airline industry is in a resurgence that’s expected to regain industry-wide profitability in 2023, with North America already expected to deliver an $8.8 billion profit in 2022. Many lessons were learned during the health crisis, and now customers are demanding more from their carriers, including increased menu options, most notably demanding more vegetarian- and vegan-friendly options. Recently Air Canada (TSX:AC) (OTC:ACDVF) took a public tongue-lashing from a travel blogger specifically for its lack of delivering upon vegan orders, while American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ:AAL) has also taken criticism for its inconsistency. Responding to these concerns, the airlines have sprung into action to re-establish trust with vegetarian and vegan clientele, including American Airlines adding a popular new vegan cookie dough bars snack option, United Airlines Holding, Inc. (NASDAQ:UAL) and Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE:DAL) each teaming up with Impossible Foods, and Air Canada tapped Pangea Natural Foods (CSE:PNGA) (OTC:PNGAF) to provide a new high-protein snack mix to its flights.

In-flight catering is big business, with the world’s in-flight catering services market expected to reach $21.5 billion by 2024.

In the case of Pangea Natural Foods (CSE:PNGA), getting picked up by a major carrier such as Air Canada (TSX:AC) (OTC:ACDVF) is a major win, as it’s Canada’s largest domestic and international airline with a fleet of over 330, serving more than 160 destinations, and flying up to 438 daily flights between Canada and the United States alone. Together with Air Canada Rouge and Air Canada Express partners, Air Canada provides scheduled passenger service directly to 51 Canadian airports, 46 destinations in the United States and 67 airports in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and Africa.

While technically vegetarian and not vegan (due to its white chocolate chips), Pangea’s Munchie Mix is a superfood rich snack made with dried cranberries, white chocolate chips, roasted cashews, almonds and pumpkin seeds. Pangea manufactures the Munchie Mix, along with their Plant-Based Patties and Old Fashioned Ghee in-house at their Vancouver Lower Mainland facility, which has been approved by both the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

“The introduction of Munchie Mix into Pangea’s product line is yet another opportunity for us to bring high-quality products to the market,” said Pangea CEO Pratap Sandhu. “All ingredients are free of GMOs and packed with antioxidants, magnesium, manganese, zinc and vitamin E. We are thrilled to introduce the Munchie Mix to Air Canada’s large network of routes, thus expanding our distribution beyond just an e-commerce and retail footprint.”

Prior to the announcement, Pangea had made its splash on the market by establishing its other products, the Pangea Plant-Based Patties and Old Fashioned Ghee via their online website and through over 250 retail outlets across Canada and the United States.

For first-class customers on flights in the United States, American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ:AAL) is now offering a delicious line of plant-based, on-the-go cookie dough bars from Whoa Dough.

“Having a major airline carry our line is incredibly exciting for us, as we are eager for Whoa Dough to be enjoyed by millions of travelers every day who are looking for a healthier all-natural snack—without compromising on taste during their flight,” said Whoa Dough founder Todd Goldstein. “Our snack bars are also ideal for passengers with dietary registrations.”

Created with no artificial ingredients, Whoa Dough's Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough flavor is one of the brand's most popular varieties with customers. Each bar contains 4 grams of protein, 5 grams of fat, and 9 grams of sugar, all with only 150 calories, and are also certified gluten-Free, Vegan, Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, Egg Free, OU Kosher, and Non-GMO Project Verified.

Earlier this year, both Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE:DAL) and United Airlines Holding, Inc. (NASDAQ:UAL) each added to their menus by tapping into the expertise of Impossible Foods which is expected to go public soon, either through a traditional IPO or a SPAC merger.

In the case of Delta, they featured the work of Impossible Foods by debuting new plant-based menu options in March. For United, their similar announcement came later in June.

“Not only are plant-based meats like Impossible™ Burger delicious to eat, but they’re also often better for the environment, using far less land and water to produce,” said Kristen Manion Taylor, SVP – In-Flight Service for Delta. “These new options are one part of Delta’s broader mission to promote a wellness-focused travel journey.

Delta flights went on to not only include the Impossible Burger, but also Impossible’s plant-based meatballs, as well as plant-based lamb meatballs from Black Sheep Foods, cauliflower cakes, and a warm seasonal vegetable plate.

United customers went on to be treated to an exclusive Impossible Meatball Bowl on select US flights, as well as Impossible Sausage made from plants in select Polaris lounges.

"We want our food offerings to evolve and change along with people's preferences – we're proud to work with Impossible Foods and think our customers are really going to love these new options," said Aaron McMillan, United Managing Director of Hospitality and Planning. "To many travelers, the quality of food choices at the airport and in the sky are a really important part of the customer experience, so we're invested in making sure our menu items exceed their expectations."


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