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Jin Air’s ready meals become a hit amid home meal replacements boom

Jin Air’s ready-meal series known as Jini Kitchen the Real (Jin Air)
Jin Air’s ready-meal series known as Jini Kitchen the Real (Jin Air)
Low-cost carrier Jin Air has sold over 10,000 of its in-flight themed ready meals in their first month, according to the airline -- nearly one every four minutes.

The ready-meal series including beef goulash pasta, rice with cashew chicken chwinamul (aster leaves) and cream pasta was released in November, themed after in-flight meals to cater to those who miss airplane food.

“It appears many customers are enjoying our ready-meals to remember the excitement of traveling and quench the thirst for it,” one Jin Air official said.

The meals come in a green box, like on Jin Air flights, along with cutlery and a mock flight ticket.

The airline explained it has also noticed an uptick in airplane-themed social media posts from consumers posing with the ready-meals as it is a part of its charm.

Though Jin Air is the first airline in Korea to release airplane-themed ready meals, many other airlines have made similar moves, including Thai Airways and Canada’s Air North.

In June, convenience store CU also launched airline-themed ready meals as the company said it wanted to “comfort” people who could not travel abroad during the coronavirus pandemic.

In a further sign of the popularity of home meal replacements, Josun Hotels & Resorts, previously known as Shinsegae Chosun Hotel, also said last month its Chinese-inspired ready meals including jajangmyeon jjamppong sold over 100,000 units three months after its release.

“As the trend of preferring things that are contactless, premium and convenient continues, the home meal replacements market including meal kits is growing rapidly,” said one official at the hotel.

Amid growing demand, the company released a series of new Josun Hotel dishes last week, including galbi, kimchi fried rice and spicy Thai seafood fried rice, with plans to offer a wide range of meals from the hotel’s chefs.

Jin Air also said Thursday it is looking at developing new menus for its ready-meals including salmon and beef steak.

By Yim Hyun-su (