A small, but personally meaningful catering victory this month, as United Airlines has restored freshly-cut fruit onboard both domestic and international flights.
United Airlines Returns Fresh Cut Fruit With Breakfast
Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day and whether I am out and about or at home, my breakfast always includes fruit. I do realize that some rightfully question the nutritional value of fruit, but I figure the sugars are natural and it beats the refined carbs found in most breads or other processed foods.
Berries, peaches, and apricots are my favorite, but I do love ripe fruit of all kinds, like watermelon, pineapple, honeydew, and even citrus fruits or seedless grapes. Little fruit bowls have been a staple of airline meals for decades…that is, until the pandemic.
For much of the pandemic, United has substituted a usually-ripe and tasty fruit bowl for a Dole fruit cup:
Sorry, but I’m not eating processed fruit in a sugary syrup.
So in addition to missing out on fruit, serving this highly-refined fruit cup leads to food and plastic waste…and I know I am not alone.
But this month, United re-introduced fresh fruit on breakfast flights, which is a small but meaningful step in the road to toward restoring service to pre-pandemic levels to match pre-pandemic demand.
Passengers flying on premium transcontinental or Hawaiian flights during the breakfast window or on longhaul flights in Polaris business class or Premium Plus premium economy class now receive a “real” bowl of freshly-cut fruit instead of the processed fruit cup.
For much of the pandemic, cost-cutting has masqueraded as “safety” or “hygiene” concerns, but it was all theatre…a bowl of fruit versus a sealed plastic cup of fruit poses no additional risk to flight attendants or nearby passengers. If anything, it poses less because passengers do not have to struggle to peel off the sticky lids of the container.
Thank you for this small but important move United…it restores some of the dignity in first class that has been lost for many months. Now how about hot croissants and cinnamon rolls?
the drama in this article…boo hooo
Hands off my fruit!
And lets go back to the OLD Cin Rolls, not the newer ones that are horrid. 😛
Yay for the fruit lovers, but if we could just talk about that yogurt. What’s in that stuff? It doesn’t taste anything like yogurt. It’s the Dole Fruit Cup of yogurts.
And agree about the new cinnamon rolls. Bring back the good ones.
Enough of the security theater – time for UNITED to lead on premium cabin food so it can lead on yield
The irony of worrying about the environment while at the same time obsessively pursuing business and first class travel is….well, there’s a word for that right?
Any word if they are getting rid of that terrible mango sorbet?
it is so funny that the mango sorbet is hated by pretty much anyone, can you do a post asking for anyone that likes and/or eats it???
Nothing like Crunchy melon to start the day. United’s own variety.
I found that on American, but not UA.
Matthew, what about domestic UA flights that qualify for meal service in the front cabin – will these also receive fresh fruit also? Doesn’t seem so from your article.
We’ll see on 6/15, but my guess is not.
Well said, Matthew. Under the guise of “safety” most businesses, not just airlines resorted to cost cutting. It’s simply outrageous. Imagine if upscale restaurants started serving guests Dole fruit cups or Hostess cupcakes for dessert!!
Alaska never stopped serving the fruit and cheese plate, my favorite, along with the hot cookie.
I recently visited the United Club at LAX and noticed the food was back at the buffet instead of behind the bar like it’s been for the past year. There were also a lot more fresh options like packaged salads, cheese, veggies, and sandwiches. Are they rolling out new food options and moving back towards normal for all the clubs?