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Saudi Arabian Airlines Catering wins IATA Award

Dammam-based catering firm wins golden award for quality assurance.
Khalid S. Sheshah, chief catering, SAAC, Dammam was presented with the Golden Award
Khalid S. Sheshah, chief catering, SAAC, Dammam was presented with the Golden Award

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Saudi Arabian Airlines Catering (SAAC) at Dammam's King Fahd International Airport has won the IATA International Catering Quality Assurance (ICQA) Golden Award for 2010.

This is the second consecutive year that SAAC’s Damman unit has won the accolade, which recognises in-flight catering firms that have demonstrated best practices in the areas of food safety and food processing quality.

Khalid S. Sheshah, chief catering, SAAC, Dammam, attributed the award to his team of 350 staff. “We have achieved this accolade mainly because of meeting the criteria for the selection and by maintaining high standards and an awareness within all staff of the opportunity of the award,” he said. “It is a tremendous motivation tool for staff, a recognition for the entire Saudi Arabian Airlines Catering Company and the airline itself.”

Sheshah said the main challenges facing in-flight caterers were: food safety; competitive prices; and maintaining airline and company standards.

SAAC Damman overcame these by “strictly following all HACCP and local regulations; making efforts to continuously control costs and achieve competitive prices; and adhering to airline manuals at all times,” said Sheshah.

The IATA International Catering Quality Assurance (ICQA) Golden Award recognises caterers who consistently perform well under the ICQA programme, which was established by IATA at the request of the ICQA Council.

The ICQA selects the award winners from more than 220 eligible catering facilities worldwide in three regions.

The SAAC Dammam unit — which serves approximately two million meals per year — was selected as the winner in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region.

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