Jaipur, May 14, 2020.
SpiceJet, the country’s biggest air cargo operator, is contributing in a big way to support Indian farmers by transporting record quantities of fresh farm and shrimp produce and supporting the government’s ‘KrishiUdan’ and ‘Marine KrishiUdaan’ initiatives.
Lending a helping hand to farmers and ensuring that the supply chain remains intact and farmers get to transport and export their produce in a timely and efficient manner during the nation-wide lockdown, SpiceJet has transported over 20 lakh kilograms of fresh farm and shrimp produce using its dedicated fleet of freighters and passenger aircraft and operating special cargo flights to various domestic and international destinations.
As part of its efforts to provide a boost to agro exports, the airline has ferried 1070 tons of farm produce during the lockdown period till May 8, 2020 both within and outside the country. Some of the major markets include — Abu Dhabi, Kuwait, Muscat, Singapore, Kolkata, Kochi, Mumbai among others.
Pioneer of India’s ‘Marine KrishiUdaan’, SpiceJet had launched dedicated freighter flights on February 25 this year to ferry shrimp. The airline has transported 950 tons of shrimp during the lockdown phase till May 8, 2020 to help India’s Shrimp farmers. Between February 25 and May 8, SpiceJet has transported close to 1550 tons of shrimp. The major markets served by the airline under the program include — Kolkata, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Surat and Vishakhapatnam. Shrimp farmers used face a lot of problems in undertaking timely transportation of seeds in the absence of dedicated freighter flights thereby leading to heavy losses.
Ajay Singh, Chairman & Managing Director, SpiceJet, said, “These are the most difficult times for our farmer community who have been amongst the worst hit during this pandemic. In the absence of timely transportation farmers would have faced huge losses and we are happy that our cargo services have been of help to them. SpiceJet remains firmly committed to the Government’s all-out efforts in mitigating the adverse impact of the pandemic.”
Overall, during the lockdown period, the airline has transported 6650 tons of cargo
transporting COVID-19 related medical and surgical supplies, sanitizers, face masks, coronavirus rapid test kits, IR thermometers etc. and providing doorstep deliveries of essential supplies, medicines, medical equipment, cold chain medical supplies to various medical and pharma companies, international retailers in this global war against the pandemic.
The airline has operated special cargo flights to and from Abu Dhabi, Kuwait, Singapore, Ho Chi Minh, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Bangkok, Colombo, Dubai, Kabul, Myanmar, Sharjah, Male, Kuala Lumpur, Guangzhou, Bahrain, Cambodia, Ukraine and a host of other places.
Kolkata has been a major hub for both perishables and shrimp produce for SpiceJet and accounted for close to 470 MT of cargo during the lockdown. The airline has transported close to 425 MT of shrimp while servicing the ‘city of joy’ on key routes such as Chennai-Kolkata (320 MT), Vishakhapatnam-Kolkata (90 MT), Kolkata-Imphal (12 MT) among others. Additionally, the airline has transported approximately 45 MT of perishables from Kolkata to domestic destinations such as Imphal, Bengaluru, Agartala, Chennai, Mumbai and Guwahati and 13 MT to international destinations such as Colombo and Hong Kong.
Chennai has been yet another major market for SpiceJet for shrimp produce. The airline has transported close to 685 MT of shrimp while servicing the capital city of Tamil Nadu on key routes such as Chennai-Kolkata (320) and Chennai-Surat (365MT) during the lockdown period.
The airline has transported over 505 MT of shrimp while servicing Surat on key routes such as – Chennai-Surat (365 MT) and Vishakhapatnam-Surat (140 MT).
SpiceJet has transported 724 tons of fresh farm produce from Kerala during the lockdown period.
Besides Chennai, Vishakhapatnam has been another key market in South India accounting for close to 225 MT of shrimp cargo. From Vishakhapatnam, the airline has transported cargo to key domestic destinations such as Surat (140 MT) and Kolkata (85 MT).
SpiceJet has been continuously expanding its cargo network on both domestic and international routes carrying not just COVID-19 related medical supplies but also ensuring that vital export lines from India to other countries remain intact. The airline operated the country’s first cargo-on-seat flight on April 7 carrying vital supplies in passenger cabin & belly space. Since then, the airline has been regularly deploying its B737 and Q400 passenger aircraft to carry cargo in the passenger cabin.
On March 29, SpiceJet operated a special flight between Delhi and Jodhpur to facilitate transportation of 136 Indian passengers evacuated from COVID-19 hit Iran to a Government quarantine facility in the city.
SpiceJet operated a special charter flight on March 27 from Delhi to Coimbatore on Government’s request and transported a Hazmat suit that is helping local authorities replicate and start local manufacturing.