Korean Air's airplane/Courtesy of Korean Air

Korea’s top carrier to stop serving peanuts

It seems that not a single day goes by without Korean Air making headlines. This time around, it is about peanuts, with which the country’s flag carrier has some history.

The Seoul-based company announced on March 31 that it will stop serving peanuts in the aftermath of a recent incident where a teenager boy was unable to board a flight due to peanut allergy.

He left Atlanta to visit the Philippines but was stranded in Seoul as Korean Air refused his request not to serve peanuts around him because he has a severe peanut allergy.

Korean Air came under fire, which prompted the airline firm to stop serving peanuts any more. In weeks, it also plans to remove food containing peanuts from in-flight meals.

The news came five days after shareholders ousted scandal-ridden Hanjin Group Chairman Cho Yang-ho from the board of Korean Air. The latter is an iconic unit of the former.

Cho, who has led Korean Air for the past two decades, failed to win the green light of shareholders for his re-appointment as a director. The 70-year-old tycoon is now on trial for allegedly embezzling more than $18 million.

Besides, Korean Air has something to do with peanuts _ the so-called nutgate, which involves Chairman Cho’s eldest daughter of Cho Hyun-ah, otherwise known as Heather Cho.

In late 2014, she ordered a Korean Air aircraft to return to the gate before takeoff so that the flight was delayed some 20 minutes, taking issue with the way peanuts were served.

Back then, she had a heated confrontation with the cabin crew chief with a surname of Park. She ordered Park off the plane and even physically assaulted him.

Because of the incident, she was put behind bars for five months as she was found guilty in the Korean court of obstructing aviation.

Her misery may not be done yet. Park now spearheads a campaign of dispelling her and her father from the management of Korean Air, with which many of the firm’s employees appear to sympathize.

Plus, she faces another trial over charges of having smuggled luxury goods, furniture, and even daily necessities since April 2009.


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The publisher studied Korean history in Seoul and management of business administration in the United Kingdom. He has 20-year experiences in the media business. Kim can be reached at voc200@gmail.com or 82-2-6956-6698.