LATAM Cargo plans to launch Santiago de Chile-Chicago O’Hare (Illinois) services, starting Feb. 19.

O’Hare International Airport is LATAM Cargo’s sixth destination in the US and its third connection point to connecting cargo to Asia.

Chile is the largest salmon exporter in the region, with a steadily increasing demand from the Asian market in recent years. LATAM Cargo will use O’Hare as a strategic connectivity point to the Far East.

In 2014, an average of 37 tons were transported between both markets each week; in 2018 the volume rose to approximately 700 tons per week, on average.

LATAM Cargo also plans to increase its weekly capacity to carry salmon to Asia by 100 additional tons.

“We know the Asian market will be a strategic focus in the development of Chilean aquaculture … this new route will allow us to offer a better service with a much shorter time until the final destination,” LATAM Cargo commercial director-South America Claudio Torres said.

In 2018, LATAM Cargo opened five cargo-only services. The trend will continue in 2019, with Santiago-Chicago being the first new route of the year served by freighter aircraft.

Kurt Hofmann, hofmann.aviation@netway.at