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1337Delta764
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Why Does UA Still Need Chelsea Food Services?

Mon Nov 19, 2012 6:34 pm

Considering that UA flights out of DEN are catered by LSG Sky Chefs, and the fact that UA renewed its contract with Gate Gourmet last month at ORD, SFO, and IAD, why does UA still need Chelsea Food Services? Meal service is a far cry from what it used to be, and I'd be very surprised if the Chelsea operation is actually making money.

IMO UA should sell Chelsea to Gate Gourmet, where they would gain ops at UA's IAH, CLE, and DEN hubs. The only UA hub where Chelsea and Gate Gourmet overlap is EWR. LSG Sky Chefs, for comparison, already has ops in both IAH and DEN, and they pulled out of CLE fairly recently and I don't know if they would be willing to return there.
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strfyr51
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RE: Why Does UA Still Need Chelsea Food Services?

Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:09 pm

Chelsea came over as part of the merger. If they're going to KEEP them then I say use them exclusively! OR sell them exclusively! United Still needs flight kitchens to keep their menu in the cutting edge but normal catering? They can do that with any reputable catering company. Now it could be about contracts Etc and if that's the case then all bets aside. BUT eiher DO or Don't DO!
 
LAXintl
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RE: Why Does UA Still Need Chelsea Food Services?

Tue Nov 20, 2012 6:24 pm

I agree on a corporate level having your own inhouse catering division is not a priority, however if it does manage to cover its cost, I don't see a harm in keeping it.

Also for info Chelsea does more than just airport catering. For instance it preps and distributes sandwiches to places like Starbucks and other chains like grocery stores even.
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1337Delta764
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RE: Why Does UA Still Need Chelsea Food Services?

Tue Nov 20, 2012 7:15 pm

Quoting strfyr51 (Reply 1):
Chelsea came over as part of the merger. If they're going to KEEP them then I say use them exclusively! OR sell them exclusively! United Still needs flight kitchens to keep their menu in the cutting edge but normal catering? They can do that with any reputable catering company. Now it could be about contracts Etc and if that's the case then all bets aside. BUT eiher DO or Don't DO!

Of course, most major airlines don't cater only from their hubs; most airlines tend to use whoever is available at the airport. This saves on fuel costs, since round-trip catering from hubs requires having to carry food for two flights on one of the round-trip segments, thus adding weight. Yes, there are a few exceptions to the rule, for example, DL doesn't presently use Chelsea at CLE, who is now the only catering company available there since the departure of LSG Sky Chefs. It would be very expensive for UA to open Chelsea kitchens at all spoke cities.

However, considering that UA renewed its contract with Gate Gourmet at ORD, SFO, and IAD last month, this seems to imply that UA has no plan on growing Chelsea beyond the PMCO hubs and DEN (which was originally set-up for CO's hub-that never-was there). If UA doesn't plan on growing Chelsea, what is the point of keeping them?

[Edited 2012-11-20 11:20:46]
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