Man Says Gluten-Free Airline Meal Was Just A Banana With Knife And Fork

All Nippon Airways disputes his claim, saying the fruit was just a snack.

A Japanese airline is contesting a British passenger’s claim that he requested the “gluten-free” meal option, only to receive a single banana with a knife, fork and salt packet.

Martin Pavelka, who has celiac disease and cannot consume gluten, told The Evening Standard that he received the sad “meal” on an All Nippon Airways flight from Tokyo to Sydney on April 20.

“On this flight, I was left literally speechless,” Pavelka told the Standard. “One single banana arrived.”

But the banana was not actually meant to be a "meal," the airline says. ANA serves food twice on international flights: a full meal an hour after take-off, and a second “snack service” two hours before arrival, ANA wrote in an official statement emailed to HuffPost.

“On this specific instance, the passenger ordered a gluten free meal and then a gluten free snack,” the statement read. “The banana he ordered was the gluten free snack option.”

Pavelka did note to the Standard that he had received a full in-flight meal earlier. However, he said that while he was munching on a banana, the passengers around him enjoyed a “full breakfast meal consisting of eggs, sausage, mushrooms, bread, and yogurt.”

In any case, ANA said the company is working out the situation with Pavelka.

“We have apologized to him personally and as a result of his experience we are reviewing our policy on gluten free options and how they are served,” the airline’s statement read.

Airplane Passengers Over The Years