Key features of seals for airline catering

The importance of seals for airline catering


In the airline industry, all food and products sold on board must be strictly controlled in view of possible inspections by the health, tax and, of course, customs authorities. In this respect, airline catering seals take on a special importance: they guarantee both the identification and the non-manipulation of this type of lockers on the plane.

The use of security seals is necessary from various points of view:

  • Sanitary: the cold chain must be respected at all times, since it is what limits the proliferation of microorganisms. The security seals ensure the traceability of the food at all times during transport and avoid unauthorized handling.
  • Customs: the food and products that are transported in the catering trolleys must be declared to the authorities. The food that is consumed does not fall within the fiscal import/export framework, but its transportation must be recorded in view of a possible inspection. In this respect, the security seals then function as a control device that avoids irregularities.
  • For the security of the products: the security seals also aim to prevent unwanted theft of the goods they protect. In this case, the trolleys not only transport food for the passengers, but also all the products offered for sale on board.

Types of seals for in-flight catering and sales

– Padlock–type seals:

Padlock-type security seals are used to seal the on-board catering trolleys. These also incorporate identifying data for monitoring the products. In fact, they can be made to measure. However, their main function is to prevent the unauthorized opening of the on-board trolleys.

These padlock-shaped seals are made of plastic and are easy to apply. Once they are hooked, they must be cut open to gain access to the trolley.

The Precintia Hand-Lok catering seal is an example of this type of seal.

– Strap seals:

The most widely used security seals, they have a flexible plastic strip and a wider flag which contains the ID information. They usually incorporate a bar code and a number corresponding to the delivery note that accompanies the trolley. When checking the content of the trolley, the proper checks are made and, if the seal corresponds to the information shown in the document, it is sealed in compliance.

A passive security semi-barrier system. In this respect they are not the same as the high security seals we have already mentioned in this blog, since they require no special tools for opening them, unlike bottle-type seals.

Pull Fly and Pull Tite models perform this function in the airline catering service.

Flight attendants pushing a catering trolley

– Seals with metallic cable:

This is the third most common type of security seals for in-flight catering and sales. A safer alternative to the previous model, which is made of plastic, and ensures greater protection against tampering, since special tools are needed for opening it.

In this type of seal, Precintia’s Nifty-Lok security seal stands out.

Characteristics of Precintia security seals for catering and in-flight sales

New we have seen the main generic types, what are the Precintia security seals for in-flight catering and sales like? We present the main models:

1. Hand-Lok, the definitive trolley seal

Hand-Lok type lockable catering sealIt is one of Precintia’s most versatile padlock-type seals. In the airline industry, it is used to protect lockers on the plane and for in-flight sales and food trolleys. Its main features are:

– Made of polypropylene, with a tensile strength of 2.8 kg.

Manually locked and no tool is necessary for its application.

– Ideal for holes and small openings.

Customizable with various types of marking: injected ink, digital thermoprinting and/or laser. You can add a company logo and name, as well as a bar code and identification numbering.

– Available in five different colours: red, light blue, yellow, white and black.


2. Pull Fly and Pull Tite, two multi-functional indicating seals

In the airline industry, they are also used to seal life jackets and first aid kits. We compare Pull Tite and Pull Fly models in a table:

Pull Tite Pull Fly
39 x 22 mm flag and 150 mm, 240 mm and 300 mm tape 24 x 12 mm flag and 115 mm tape
Available in polypropylene Available in polypropylene or nylon
Tensile strength 4-6 kg Tensile strength of 4.8 kg (polypropylene) and 6-8 kg (nylon)
Customizable with laser marking, injected ink or digital thermal printing Customizable with thermal printing.
Colours: light blue, dark, red, yellow and green Colours: violet, red, green, grey, yellow and white


3. Nifty-Lok, metal seal for in-flight catering and sales

Nifty-Lok metal cable sealThe Nifty-Lok metal cable seal provides greater security than previous models. It is used in the airline industry in cases in which the company wants to provide extra security to its trolleys and lockers.

Its main features are:

– The flag is made of aluminium with a steel cable.

Tensile strength 120-150 kg.

– Requires special tools for removing.

– Can be customized using a laser. You can add a company logo and name, as well as a bar code and ID numbering.

– Available in five different colours: red, light blue, yellow, white and black.


The importance of catering security on board

On-board screen with "Good Flight" messageThe in-flight catering service is not only a culinary challenge for any chef, but also a logistical challenge from the point of view of food safety. The risk of collective food poisoning on board an aeroplane has to be minimized to avoid such a potentially catastrophic event.

The security seals fulfil this function and it’s only when we look closer at this sector that we better understand the importance of their presence. If you want to consult us about which security seals to acquire for this sector, we will be happy to assist you. We look forward to hearing from you!

Contacta con Precintia (sector aéreo)


Telephone contact

+34 935 446 450

Do you want to be our distributor or representative?

See what we offer


Brochure of security products

Read more