FDA Finds Mice, Roaches and Gnats in Your Airline Food
You might want to stick with the sealed bag of peanuts, after an investigation by the Food and Drug Administration recently discovered the presence of mice, ants and roaches in airline food.
According to health documents obtained from the FDA through a Freedom of Information Act request by the show ’20/20,’ there have been nearly 1,500 “significant” health violations, with regards to airlines and their caterers over the course of the last four years—a rate substantially higher than any other industry inspected by the FDA.
Perhaps the most shocking item in the report is one that indicates that mice are aboard Delta Airlines planes. The airline issued a statement in response: “This clearly was an isolated incident and we cooperated with the FDA immediately to resolve it immediately after it was brought to our attention. The health and safety of Delta’s customers and employees are Delta’s top priority. We take this issue very seriously and have an established routine servicing program to inspect our aircraft.”
But that’s nothing compared to the reports that LSG Sky Chefs, a leading caterer for many of the nation’s airlines, were caught with both live and dead ants and cockroaches around areas where food is prepared. “You can’t have insect remains and feces of rodents and dead flies [in these areas],” said Roy Costa, a food-industry consultant and former health inspector.
Gate Gourmet, another top food caterer for many airlines, was also discovered to have roaches, gnats (“too many to count”), unrefrigerated food and utensils on dirty racks. Still, representatives from Gate Gourmet say, “None of the FDA’s observations … indicated a threat to the health of the traveling public.”
However, health experts say that all of these things are “direct threats to public health,” which can lead to food poisoning and death.