An LAX source sent me these photos of an anti-Monkey protest over the weekend at the Tom Bradley International Terminal. According to the flier, most major world airlines have stopped shipping Monkeys are cargo, but China Southern is a holdout.
Ever wonder how those fresh flowers make it to shops across the Los Angeles region?
Many of them come by air, arriving on passenger and cargo flights at Los Angeles International Airport. According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, CBP officers processed 867.2 million cut flower stems nationwide during last year’s “Valentine’s Day” season, which runs from Jan. 1 to Feb. 14. Miami processes the overwhelming majority of those flowers.
CBP said it was expecting about 43 million flowers to come through LAX for this Valentines Day. About 65 percent of the flowers come from Colombia, while another 21 percent come from Ecuador, according to CBP.
The top arrival? You guessed it. It’s roses.
The problem with these flower shipments, according to CBP, is that South American pests can burrow themselves inside of them, which can be bad for U.S. agriculture. CBP says it “intercepted” 206 pests last year. Nationwide, those bad pests include Aphididae (Aphids), Frankliniella (Thrips), Noctuidae (moths), Agromyzidae (Miner Flies) and Tetranychus (mites).
If you’re interested in more information on flower imports, Scott Mayerowitz of the Associated Press has a great story up today.
“Heat is the enemy,” Mayerowitz wrote. “When a plane touches down in Miami, the flowers are rushed to a nearby warehouse where a parade of forklifts carry them into giant coolers — really rooms — set at 35 degrees. Every time the giant cooler doors open up, fog rolls out as the frigid air hits the Florida humidity.”
I have failed you. There was big news at Los Angeles International Airport recently, and I missed it.
Aircargoworld.com reports that Yun Zi, a panda, was transported to Shanghai on a China Southern Boeing 777 Freighter. Yun Zi, born in the United States, had been at the San Diego Zoo. I don’t know much about Panda diplomacy, but the story states that an agreement between the United States and China requires Pandas to go to China before they turn 4. Apparently China retains control even of Pandas born here. (There is a fascinating New Yorker piece on a Panda issues, published in September)
According to the Air Cargo World story, Yunzi had an uneventful flight.
After welcoming the panda to an isolated storage area in Pudong Cargo Terminal, the veterinarian did an overall body check of the panda, fed him and placed him on a pallet in the designated quarantine area. Yunzi flew to Chengdu, China, and then to Wolong Nature Reserve in Sichuan, China, where his parents grew up.
The good folks at Laist put together a nice photo gallery of Yun Zi’s life in San Diego.
Perhaps you’re in Europe and you need a Corvette. And you want it in a few days, not a couple of months. How would you get it?
You might try Lufthansa Cargo, the German-based airline with a worldwide route network. Lufthansa Cargo flies three times a week to Los Angeles International Airport, and the airline recently allowed me to observe its operations here. For a couple of hours, the tarmac is bustling, with crews simultaneously loading and unloading cargo.
The Corvette is just one tiny piece of what Lufthansa Cargo transported on a recent evening. Read on to learn more about how it all works.
A few weeks ago, I wrote a post highlighting the top air cargo operators at Los Angeles International Airport. FedEx was No. 1 – as most people might expect – but the second biggest cargo carrier surprised a bunch of readers. It was American Airlines. (UPS has a relatively small operation at LAX, preferring to fly into other area airports.)
Some readers were so skeptical of the data that I agreed to contact American to confirm. Jeff Plant, American’s managing director for LAX, told me in an email that American does in fact have a vibrant cargo operation here.
Here are some facts he shared:
- American has a 60,000 square-foot cargo facility at the airport staffed 24 hours a day, seven days per week.
- Cargo is sent domestically and to many destinations abroad, including Europe, Latin America, Japan, China, South Korea and Australia.
- Common cargo includes: perishables, pharmaceuticals, machine parts, live animals, international mail and human remains (!!!)
According to the American Cargo website, the division has annual revenues of $669 million, serves 260 airports worldwide and has 1,100 employees. Worldwide, American transports more than 100 million pounds of cargo every week.