From botox to iceberg lettuce and even an orangutan: The incredible items transported by plane

It seems there is very little that can’t be transported by plane.

IAG Cargo exclusively revealed to MailOnline Travel some of the incredible items that it has flown around the world recently. Examples include a six-month-old cheetah, a baby orangutan, a lion, over half a tonne of botox to Brazil – and a great deal of fish.

The firm handles the cargo on 15,000 flights weekly to 350 destinations, and there’s always plenty of variety in the holds…

Quvam the Lion, pictured, was one of many animals to be handled by IAG Cargo when he was sent from Moscow Zoo to Madrid Zoo earlier this year 

Quvam the Lion, pictured, was one of many animals to be handled by IAG Cargo when he was sent from Moscow Zoo to Madrid Zoo earlier this year 

IAG ships 4.5 tonnes-worth of coffee-makers from Singapore to New York as New Yorkers drink almost seven times more coffee than any other city in America.

At the time of Prince Harry’s wedding to Meghan Markle, 500kg of Royal Wedding edition magazines were shipped from London to Nashville on the Monday after the ceremony.

Every October, 3.5 tonnes of nutmeg are shipped from Jeddah to Chicago in time for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

During the World Cup, 15 tonnes of vodka were transported from Amsterdam to Chicago – around 750 bottles to keep the party going.

Around 700kg of Botox has been transported from South Korea to Brazil. And 11 tonnes of mint oil and 11 tonnes of metabolic supplements were shipped to the US from Mumbai and Milan respectively.

Over 26 planes-worth of fresh salmon have been taken from Chile to Tel Aviv. 

More than two billion vaccines have been shipped across 90 countries using IAG’s Constant Climate technology. 

In 2017, IAG Cargo transported a baby orangutan, Loren, from Moscow Zoo to London

Loren was later renamed Mimi and as she was too small to fly in the cargo hold was upgraded to fly in British Airways' business class cabin

In 2017, IAG Cargo transported a baby orangutan, Loren, from Moscow Zoo to London (pictured). Loren was later renamed Mimi and as she was too small to fly in the cargo hold was upgraded to fly in British Airways’ business class cabin 

While reacting to the diphtheria outbreak in Venezuela, IAG Cargo shipped over five tonnes of the vaccine to Caracas from India in a single shipment. 

At the time of a national lettuce shortage in the UK due to the summer’s heatwave, the company shipped over 30,000 heads of iceberg lettuce from LA to London over the course of one week.

IAG Cargo transported a slow loris rescued from an illegal pet store in Lebanon to the UK in September. Over the past few years IAG Cargo and British Airways have been working together with animal preservation centre Monkey World to rescue illegally obtained primates across the world, many of them endangered species.

Quvam the Lion was handled by IAG Cargo when he was sent from Moscow Zoo to Madrid Zoo to be united with his future mate, in spite of the Beast from the East bringing temperatures of-26C, which delayed flight departures.

Over the summer IAG Cargo transported a six-month-old cheetah, Kiara, pictured, from her home at Lory Park Zoo in Johannesburg to an organisation in Cornwall

Over the summer IAG Cargo transported a six-month-old cheetah, Kiara, pictured, from her home at Lory Park Zoo in Johannesburg to an organisation in Cornwall

In 2017, IAG Cargo transported a baby orangutan, Loren, from Moscow Zoo to London. Loren, renamed Mimi, was too small to fly in the hold, and after months of approvals sought from various bodies, it was finally approved to transport Mimi in British Airways’ Club World cabin, where she was given a spread of fruit and apple juice.

Over the summer IAG Cargo transported a six-month-old cheetah, Kiara, from her home at Lory Park Zoo in Johannesburg to the Rare Species Conservation Trust in Cornwall. Cheetah are registered as one of the most endangered species by Cites, meaning her move to Cornwall would allow conservation specialists to pair Kiara with a carefully selected mate to help grow the cheetah population and prevent inbreeding. 

In addition, every year IAG Cargo donates hundreds of airline blankets to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, ensuring the baby elephants are kept warm, protecting them from common diseases such as pneumonia before they are reintroduced into the wild. In the wild elephants keep warm by staying in their herds but, when an elephant is orphaned, they are unable to sustain adequate body temperature on their own. 

IAG Cargo transported ancient artefacts (example pictured) from Africa to the British Museum for its exhibition 'I am Ashurbanipal: King of the World, King of Assyria' 

IAG Cargo transported ancient artefacts (example pictured) from Africa to the British Museum for its exhibition ‘I am Ashurbanipal: King of the World, King of Assyria’ 

The firm flew bonnet head sharks from Miami to a ten million-litre Dubai Aquarium earlier this year.

IAG Cargo transported ancient artefacts from Africa to the British Museum for its exhibition ‘I am Ashurbanipal: King of the World, King of Assyria’. It is the third time IAG Cargo has supported the British Museum. 

In 2017, the firm transported equipment and instruments for rock band The Who across 65 stops of their North American tour, which started in Detroit and ended in Las Vegas.

IAG Cargo partnered with London’s National Gallery last year for the transit of one of its seminal exhibitions, Monochrome: Painting in Black and White, which displayed spectacular paintings by the likes of Picasso, Rembrandt and Richter. With Secure – IAG Cargo’s custom-built handling area– every person that came into contact with a high-value piece was stringently vetted, and all items were monitored 24/7 using CCTV and manned patrols.

IAG Cargo handles the cargo on 15,000 flights weekly to 350 destinations

IAG Cargo handles the cargo on 15,000 flights weekly to 350 destinations

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