Emirates Launches Kosher Catering Facilities For Tel Aviv Plans

In preparation for its Dubai-Tel Aviv flights, UAE flag carrier Emirates has opened a dedicated kosher catering facility. The joint venture between Emirates Flight Catering and CCL Holdings will be known as Kosher Arabia. As well as providing kosher meals to airline passengers, it also hopes to cater for other events across the Gulf region, such as the Dubai Expo.

Emirates Launches Kosher Catering Facilities For Tel Aviv Plans
Emirates first announced its plans to set up a new, dedicated kosher catering facility in September 2020. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Thousands of kosher meals every day

Emirates made waves in the airline industry’s catering sector last September by announcing that it would open a kosher catering center. At the time, this new, dedicated facility was set to begin producing kosher meals in January 2021.

Although Emirates had previously provided kosher meals, these were outsourced, so this in-house facility will increase the level of choice. Two months after the initial target, the airline announced today that it had opened the Dubai-based facility. Despite producing over 2,000 meals a day, Kosher Arabia underlines that each dish will be fresh and of high quality.

Stay informed: Sign up for our daily and weekly aviation news digests!

Emirates SkyCargo, Boeing 777, Preighters
Emirates will benefit from greater choice when it comes to kosher meals thanks to its new, in-house facility. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Matt Rickard, Kosher Arabia’s General Manager, stated:

“We are excited to launch operations in our new, state-of-the-art facility. From a team of highly experienced, creative chefs to advanced technologies and reputable partners, we are well placed to lead the market and provide delicious and innovative kosher menus to our customers across the region.”

Linked to ongoing network plans

Emirates has likely opened its new catering facility in anticipation of its proposed Dubai-Tel Aviv services. These will see a significant increase in the number of passengers onboard requiring kosher meals. As such, it makes sense for Emirates to look to specialize in this area to cater for the potential trend changes in terms of its passengers’ diets.

Stansted Airport, 30 Years, Terminal Building
Although Emirates is yet to launch flights to Israel, its kosher catering center is a strong statement of intent. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

At the beginning of the year, Emirates was expecting to launch its new services to Israel in February. However, this has still not happened, and the airline is reportedly yet to schedule any flights along this corridor. Furthermore, Israel has not yet been listed as a destination country on the Emirates website. Nonetheless, the opening of a dedicated kosher catering center represents concrete intentions, so it will likely be a matter of when, rather than if, they start these services.

A fast-growing corridor

Emirates is far from the only carrier to have got in on the act when it comes to flights between the UAE and Israel. The boom in growth along this corridor was triggered by the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two counties last August. This caused airlines in the region to jump at the chance to launch new services, with Israir being the first to launch such flights.

Israir A320
Israir became the first airline to operate a scheduled commercial service between Israel and Dubai last December, following the establishment of diplomatic relations in August. Photo: Getty Images

Arkia and flydubai were also among the carriers hoping to utilize this historic milestone to open new routes. However, Dubai was not the only UAE airport to be targeted. Indeed, Abu Dhabi also saw representation in these discourses from newly-established low-cost carrier Wizz Air Abu Dhabi. Overall, the newly-established peace deal has revitalized competition in the region, which Emirates has demonstrated a firm commitment to with its kosher catering facility.

What do you make of Emirates’ proposed Dubai-Tel Aviv services? Who would be your preferred carrier on the UAE-Israel corridor? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.