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In-flight Catering Services Market - By Aircraft Seating Class (Economy-class, Business-class, First-class), By Source (In-house, Outsource), By Food Type (Meal, Bakery & Confectionery, Beverages) & Forecast, 2021-2027

  • Report ID: GMI4634
  • Published Date: Aug 2021
  • Report Format: PDF

In-flight Catering Services Market Size

In-Flight Catering Services Market size exceeded USD 8.89 billion in 2020 and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of over 6.1% from 2021 to 2027. The proliferating global demand for commercial aircraft coupled with increasing air traffic, particularly in the APAC region is likely to bolster the market growth during the forecast period.

In-Flight Catering Services Market Overview

The key reasons behind the growth of air travel include favorable trends associated with Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and low air travel costs. Increasing disposable incomes coupled with changing lifestyles will trigger the air travel demand for business & leisure purposes. Over the past few years, air travel costs are declining due to a high degree of competition among airlines and increasing operating efficiency of airlines.

However, stringent norms on airline catering might hamper the growth of the market in the coming years. COVID-19 pandemic has caused substantial disruption in the supply-chain across the global aviation industry. Governments of majority of the countries opted for nationwide lockdown, restrictions on mobility of citizens, temporary suspension of international travels and trades to reduce the further outbreak of the pandemic, thus negatively influencing the global aviation as well as tourism industry. As the transportation bans and lockdown restrictions are getting lifted, the market will gain its momentum steadily before regaining the peak growth rate in the coming years.

In-flight Catering Services Market Analysis

The economy class segment dominated more than 60% of the market share in 2020 led by the growing consumer preference toward economy class for short to medium haul travel distance. APAC has reported an increase in number of disposable income and middle-class population over past few years, fueling the demand for economy class aircraft seating in the industry.


Outsourcing segment in the in-flight catering services market will account for USD 16 billion by 2027. Outsourcing in-flight catering service is expected to remain the preferred option for majority of airlines and private jets over the forecast time period due to the availability of a wide range of international cuisines and dishes. Stringent government regulations related to food safety and hygiene will further drive the need for outsourced in-flight catering services as they involve a lot of certification related to food safety. Major airlines have established strong contract agreements with in-flight catering service providers, further increasing the demand for outsourced food products during the forecast timeframe.

In-Flight Catering Services Market Size

Meal segment captured 45% of the revenue share in 2020. In-flight meals vary according to size, quality, and cost across airlines, classes, and flight lengths. Proper menu design and preparation process are followed by incorporation of safety measures. Airline kitchens prepare meals in kitchens on land and flight attendants reheat these meals and serve them to passengers. Proper attention to cooking methods is given to maintain aroma, color, flavor, and appearance of ingredients. Additionally, airlines are offering a variety of meals and including continental dishes to attract customers.

Global In-Flight Catering Services Market

Asia Pacific in-flight catering services market was significantly affected by COVID-19 pandemic and was valued at over USD 3 billion in 2020 impelled by the rising population, increasing disposable income levels, and supportive government policies. Countries including China and India are investing huge amounts of money on airport infrastructure projects. Apart from these two, various countries including Vietnam, Colombia, Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines are poised to be fast growing countries for air passenger travel. Favorable trends associated with the airline industry will foster the regional growth.

According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), in 2016, the number of air travelers was around 3.8 billion, and it will increase up to 7.2 billion by 2035. The growth will be spearheaded by the Asia Pacific region and it will be the fastest-growing region, in terms of air passenger traffic growth, in the future. According to the Airports Council International’s (ACI) Annual World Airport Traffic Forecasts 2017 – 2040, APAC will contribute nearly 39% of international passenger traffic growth between 2017 and 2040.

North America market is projected to witness 5% growth rate through 2027. The international passenger traffic growth in North America will be around 8.4% between 2016 and 2040. In June 2019, the U.S. government announced that the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) awarded USD 495 million in the airport infrastructure grants; which is the second allotment of the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) of USD 3.18 billion in total. The allotment will be used for the development of 327 airports across 46 states and the Pacific Islands. These upcoming projects are carried out to meet rising passenger traffic, which will generate the need for a large number of aircraft.

In-flight Catering Services Market Share

Some of the key players functioning in the in-flight catering service market are:

  • Gate Gourmet
  • Saudi Airlines Catering
  • LSG Group
  • Dnata
  • Servair
  • Goddard Catering Group
  • Newrest Catering
  • Royal Holdings 
  • Journey Group PLC
  • DO & CO
  • SATS Ltd 
  • Emirates Flight Catering
  • ANA Catering Service Co. Ltd.

Strategic partnerships and acquisitions are the key strategies opted by the key industry participants to bolster their position in the market.

The in-flight catering services market report includes in-depth coverage of the industry with estimates & forecast in terms of revenue in USD Million from 2017 to 2027 for the following segments:

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Market, By Aircraft Seating Class

  • Economy class
  • Business class
  • First class

Market, By Source

  • In-house
  • Outsource

Market, By Food Type

  • Meal
  • Bakery & confectionery
  • Beverages
  • Others

The above information is provided on a country basis for the following:

  • North America
    • U.S.
    • Canada
  • Europe
    • Germany
    • UK
    • France
    • Spain
    • Italy
    • Netherlands
  • Asia Pacific
    • China
    • India
    • Japan
    • South Korea
    • Indonesia
    • Malaysia
  • Latin America
    • Brazil
    • Mexico
  • Middle East & Africa
    • South Africa
    • UAE
    • Saudi Arabia
    • Qatar


Authors: Avinash Singh, Sunita Singh

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) :

The industry share of in-flight catering services was valued at USD 9 billion in 2020 and will expand at a CAGR of 6.1% between 2021 and 2027.

Economy class will record over 60% of the industry share in 2020 and will grow owing to the increasing consumer preference towards economy class for short to medium haul travel distance.

Outsourcing will account for USD 16 billion revenue through 2027 driven by the availability of an extensive range of international dishes and cuisines.

Major participants in the market comprise LSG Group, Servair, Gate Gourmet, Dnata, Saudi Airlines Catering, and others.

In-flight Catering Services Market Scope

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Premium Report Details

  • Base Year: 2020
  • Companies covered: 14
  • Tables & Figures: 150
  • Countries covered: 20
  • Pages: 140
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