Air cargo has helped spread the love for Valentine’s Day with airlines busily flying flowers in time for the big day.
Over a two week period, Air France KLM Martinair (AFKLMP) Cargo shipped around 3,000 tonnes of flowers from production and export nations including Kenya, Ecuador and Colombia to Europe.
AFKLMP used Boeing 747-400 Freighter capacity and combi aircraft to generate additional capacity to and from the flower producing destinations.
The capacity is mainly intended to supply the European markets, primarily the Netherlands, Italy, UK, France and Russia, as well as Japanese consumers.
AFKLMP Cargo executive vice president, Marcel de Nooijer says: “We are strongly committed to the flower market and successfully met seasonal peak flower demand again for this year’s Valentine’s Day.”
Transporting flowers is a delicate process, and the less often they are physically handled during transportation the longer they maintain their beauty.
During the flight on AFKLMP’s aircraft, a constant temperature of between two and eight degrees Celsius was maintained.
To ensure flowers move seamlessly from growers to wholesalers, Royal FloraHolland, Schiphol Cargo and AFKLMP Cargo have initiated the Holland Flower Alliance, a group of floricultural logistics professionals, dedicated to the pursuit of innovation and sustainability in the floral supply chain.
Royal FloraHolland, located in Aalsmeer, the Netherlands, is the largest trading centre for flowers in the world and plays a crucial role in onward distribution.