Delta, Air Lingus, Fiji, Iberia, Virgin Atlantic, and Level airlines continue to take food from the kitchen. Listeria was not detected on any surfaces that touch food areas and no cases of listeriosis have been reported.
Listeria was discovered in areas of the kitchen such as the floors and drains. Gate Gourmet said all floor drains and surrounding areas were “immediately and aggressively treated” and their food conforms to regulations.
Even so, American Airlines was not satisfied, and halted Gate Gourmet catering service out of Los Angeles beginning on November 1, 2017.
Virgin Australia Airlines made a similar decision last week on flights between LAX and Sydney “due to a potential issue with the standard of their food.”
According to a statement from American Airlines:
We were not satisfied with the cleanup efforts and decided to suspend food service out of the facility out of an abundance of caution.
American Airlines uses a total of 3 catering companies and it is working on securing alternative food service for its flights out of Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). The airline expects the disruption to be corrected within 7 to 10 days.
Until then, passengers will be given snacks. Business class passengers who don’t get business class food will be given vouchers from American Airlines, according to a spokesperson for the company.
Listeria is a bacteria that can cause serious infections, with an estimated 1,600 cases per year and approximately 260 deaths.
The symptoms may not occur for up to 70 days after exposure. The symptoms include fever and muscle aches, sometimes preceded by nausea or diarrhea. If the infection spreads to the nervous system, the symptoms may also include headaches, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, or seizures.
Pregnant women may experience only a mild flu-like illness before suffering an unexplained miscarriage or stillbirth.