Message for Airlines: Stop Doling out Salt on Board!

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On a recent flight with American Airlines, it struck me how rarely, if ever, I open the airline’s little paper sachet of salt and pepper. I don’t know the statistics, but I have to believe that the vast majority of those sachets get thrown out without ever having been touched. Thus, I have a suggestion to make:

Dear Airline Companies: Stop providing salt & pepper as a default on all meals!

This could have triple benefits to our world:

  • The airlines would save a few shekels.
  • The wanton waste would be diminished. 
  • Lastly, and most importantly, people would be less inclined to consume unnecessary and unhealthy amounts of salt.

Most people consume too much salt with poor consequences on our health, including high blood pressure, hypertension, dehydration and water retention. We only need 1500mg of sodium chloride (=the amount in 3g of salt) per day. Many foods naturally contain sodium chloride so we should not be adding salt willy nilly.

If airlines made salt & pepper a special request to the flight attendant, granted that might mean a little extra labor, but it would provide far greater benefits for the passengers and society, more globally. Surely, it would send the world the right message? Who’s on board?

Your thoughts?

6 Comments, RSS

  1. Marcin

    Very, very true.

    Additionally, I’d eliminate all these ridiculous small 4cl bottles; why not serving a good glass of Chivas from a big bottle instead?

    Thus, lighter planes, lower fuel consumption…

    • Excellent suggestion Marcin! I think it would certainly feel more “prestigious” to have a nice bottle to serve from. I wonder if the airlines would then need to change/reconfigure the trolleys to accommodate the taller bottles? All the glass/plastic (with individual the caps!) wasted on those small bottles is surely bad news.

  2. Roland

    I’ve long held that airlines should not be serving drinks in glass glasses nor food on ceramic plates. Weight is king. For every kilo of weight on a transatlantic flight, our favourite aircraft burn a kilo of fuel. That fuel, when burnt high up in the sky, does considerably more damage than one kilo of fuel burnt on the ground. Why should the world pay for some self-indulgent posh-class passenger to have such heavy items that are easily avoided? It’s more likely to be done back in steerage. Re-usable, light weight containers have to be the way forward. If you have to have individual bottles of wine, drink from the bottle. Oh, and don’t get me started on duty free perfumes…

    I have to confess to being one of those people who think that we should pay for the total weight of passenger plus luggage and that airfreight should be limited to emergency supplies.

    • Hi Roland, now we’re on a roll (without butter!)! Some people — on land — get upset when they are served a liquid from a bottle that hasn’t been opened in front of them. What you’re suggesting would require a significant rethinking of the supplier relationship…. and you’re surely onto something! Re your last point: that’s a touchy topic! 🙂

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