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Magma Aviation celebrates 1000th partnership flight with MidnightZulu, supporting Kenya’s economy and horticultural industry

08 May 2024

Magma Aviation, the innovative air cargo solutions company, has operated its 1000th flight from Nairobi, Kenya to Liège, Belgium as part of its alliance with airfreight and overland logistics organisation, MidnightZulu.

This crucial airbridge was established in 2018 to facilitate the transportation of cut flowers, fresh vegetables and herbs from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (NBO) to Liège Airport (LGG), with each flight containing 100 metric tonnes of the perishable cargo.

The airbridge has a huge socioeconomic impact on Kenya by bolstering its essential horticultural industry, and providing thousands of jobs in a country with high rates of unemployment.

Thomas Frankum, Chief Executive Officer at MidnightZulu, explains, “The products are meticulously harvested and prepared for uplift by a massive 10,000 people for every flight, and each person has between 8 and 10 dependants relying upon their income. Therefore, every flight literally puts food on the table for around 100,000 people.

“This human factor and the responsibility it brings is never far from the minds of Magma Aviation and MidnightZulu.”

During the six years of Magma Aviation and MidnightZulu’s partnership, the companies have together navigated significant obstacles, including Brexit and the global COVID-19 pandemic, whilst maintaining the consistent flow of fresh cargo from Kenya into various European markets.

After the cargo lands in Liège, it is customs cleared and loaded onto MidnightZulu-operated trailers, by which it is delivered to destinations across the Netherlands, Germany, Spain and the United Kingdom.

Conor Brannigan, Chief Executive Office at Magma Aviation, adds, “From the onset, Magma Aviation, in partnership with MidnightZulu, was driven by the vision to revolutionise air cargo transportation between Kenya and Europe. It was not just about business, but about making a difference; connecting continents and supporting the vibrant horticulture industry in Kenya.  Our collaborative efforts have ensured a steady flow of essential fresh goods, whilst contributing to the Kenyan economy and providing sustenance to the local community.

“We extend our heartfelt gratitude to all stakeholders, from the dedicated workers in Kenya preparing each shipment, to our partners at MidnightZulu, and every member of the logistics supply chain. Your efforts have been pivotal in meeting this milestone, and we are excited about our future work together.”

At the start of the operation in 2018 flight frequency was thrice weekly, however this increased to four times per week in 2019. Magma Aviation and MidnightZulu hope to increase this further during 2024 and 2025. All transportations take place on Magma Aviation’s fleet of B474-700F aircraft.

 

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