When British Airways launched its buy-on-board meals program for short-haul flights in 2017 it chose a strong national branding partner Marks and Spencer for the meals. Now the meals on board are suspended, but when they return the M&S branding will not be part of the offering. The carrier confirmed the contract has ended.
The company does hint that its meals will remain a branded product, suggesting an “exciting new buy-on-board proposition with a great British brand customers have told us they love.”
The move again raises questions about the value of co-branded products on board, especially as catering at altitude requires very different considerations relative to meal preparation on the ground. And, perhaps more significantly, whether passengers care at all.
But the arrangements are typically good for the bottom line. A shared marketing push can especially benefit the supplier if the product is well delivered. And, despite objections to the cost of the meals by travelers as the model shifted, the M&S food generally was well prepared and presented in the air.
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