A BA customer was served a special vegan meal with butter and cheese
A BA customer was served a special vegan meal with butter and cheese

‘What happened to quality control?' Vegan passenger served butter and cheese on British Airways flight

‘What happened to quality control and crew awareness?’ says passenger

Cathy Adams
Tuesday 03 March 2020 11:48
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A British Airways passenger who requested a special vegan meal was served it with butter and cheese.

Mark was travelling on British Airways flight BA288 on 1 March from Phoenix, US, to London Heathrow.

He tweeted a picture of his VGML vegan meal, which had a “special meal” sticker on it, next to a butter sachet and cheddar cheese triangle.

He captioned the image: “15 years ago I would have expected it, but you’re *still* serving cheese and butter with VGMLs at a time when veganism has never been so popular and well catered for elsewhere.

“What happened to quality control and crew awareness?”

British Airways responded: “We’re sorry you were given dairy products with your vegan meal, Mark. We’re grateful you’ve made us aware of this.”

A British Airways spokesperson told The Independent: “We take pride in delivering thousands of special meals daily to our customers across the globe to the highest of standards. We are extremely sorry that our customer has had a negative experience. The reported issue is being investigated with our catering partner and we will take action to ensure this does not occur in the future.”

“Veganism is not just a diet, but a deeply held ethical conviction that harming animals is wrong, so it can be really upsetting for a vegan to be given animal products when they have specifically ordered a vegan option,” Matt Turner, spokesperson for The Vegan Society, told The Independent.

“Vegan meals often have to be ordered in advance and sometimes don’t make it on board the plane. We are campaigning to see a vegan option added to standard inflight menus across the board so that everyone has the choice to order them.

“Vegan passengers should always be able to fly with ease and confidence that they will be catered for.”

It’s not the first time a passenger with dietary requirements has been served an inadequate inflight meal.

Last November, a newlywed returning from his honeymoon was left hungry and disappointed after Tui failed to provide a gluten-free meal for him on the 10-hour flight home.

James Howe had paid for premium seats and pre-booked special meals as he suffers from coeliac disease, meaning he can’t process gluten.

However, the 39-year-old from Watford was given just popcorn and crisps to survive the long-haul flight from Cancun, Mexico to Gatwick airport on 18 October.

In 2018, a vegan passenger was left feeling “distressed and humiliated” after it transpired there were no vegan meals available onboard her flight from Manchester to New York’s John F Kennedy airport.

Trilby Harrison, 54, was given nothing but nuts and crisps to eat during the seven-hour Thomas Cook flight on 15 October, despite having prebooked a vegan meal through tour operator Gotogate.

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