chapter  2
19 Pages

The air cargo industry

ByRico Merkert, David Alexander

This chapter explores four key themes associated with the air cargo industry: dynamics of the air cargo industry; impacts of macroeconomic and microeconomic factors for air cargo; relationships between air cargo industry participants, air cargo business models and management strategies; and regulation of the air cargo industry. The air cargo industry has significantly changed since the introduction of aircraft in the early twentieth century. Air cargo, especially air mail, dominated the early commercial activities of airlines until the development of aircraft such as the DC-3 and the economics of air passenger travel took over. The automotive and air cargo industries also formed a relationship in the 1920s, with the great entrepreneur Henry Ford and the Ford Motor Company expressing interest in air transport. Air cargo services for time-sensitive and highly perishable goods, such as premium seafood, agricultural products, flowers and pharmaceuticals, could be shipped to broader markets as fresh produce.