After years of experimenting, Heineken, along with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines has come up with the right technology to be able to pour draught beer on tap for passengers mid-flight.
“We are always looking for typical Dutch products to set us apart from other companies,' said KLM Inflight Services Vice-President Miriam Kartman. “Heineken is our beer partner for many years, and we both know that customers rate a beer from draught higher than out of a can.”
Heineken’s representative, Edwin Griffioen, said it was not easy to overcome the challenges to dispense beer on tap in the cabin. “Because the air pressure is so much lower in an aeroplane than at sea level, a traditional beer tap will not work as it will only dispense a huge amount of foam,” he said. The company has dispensers that work on air pressure, but they are too large to fit in the aircraft.
Edwin Griffioen said the drinks the trolley was redesigned to look like “a giant Thermos flask”, which will keep the beer temperature under 5C. “We managed to set the diameter of the tap and the air pressure to exactly the right combination, which delivers at 36,000 feet (11,000m) exactly the same beer as you would get on the ground.”
The KLM Royal Dutch Airlines plans to use the prototype on international flights from August.