To mitigate the public outburst following the recent avian influenza epidemic, South Korea is importing American eggs via private jets. This marks the first time in which American eggs are exported to Korea. The eggs will be transported via Korean Air and Asiana Air’s cargo flights.
“A cargo aircraft strictly for transporting eggs will leave Chicago on Jan. 13 and arrive in Incheon on Jan. 14,” said Asiana Air publicist Sang-yong Kang. Another Incheon-bound Korean Air cargo flight is scheduled to take off from Los Angeles and arrive on Jan. 16.
Those two aircrafts are set to take 1.64 million eggs each. In essence, a combined total of 3.28 million American fresh eggs will make way to Korea in span of just four days. Considering the fragility of eggs, transporting them in mass obviously requires additional caution which also must abide by the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) regulations.
The eggs must be contained in an IATA-approved paper boxes. Each box can contain up to 300 eggs. Each container must be cushioned and fixated with paper tape.
Boxes are also to be stacked on steel pallets. Each pallet can hold approximately 70 boxes containing roughly 20,000 eggs. The pallets holding the boxes are then covered tightly with a net. Each aircraft may take up to 70 pallets, while the ideal temperature for the eggs during the flight is between 34 to 41 degrees Fahrenheit.
Korean Air is charging around $1,800 to $2,300 per ton, but an exclusive cargo flight costs anywhere from $230,859 to $323,185. If transporting eggs will cost $230,859, a value of one egg costs around 14 cents. The first batch of eggs sent to Korea will weigh about 98,600 tons.
By Hyun Sook Cho