Food poisoning on several flights

&to=http:// ' target=_blank>Contaminated carrots served on several flights out of Honolulu likely caused 45 people to suffer food poisoning across 22 states, Japan, Australia and American Samoa, a state &to=http:// ' target=_blank>epidemiologist said Thursday.

The outbreak has sparked one lawsuit, filed Thursday, against airline caterer Gate Gourmet Inc., which included the carrots in meals served last Aug. 22-24.

The company, based in Virginia and Switzerland, was sent a warning letter by the federal Food and Drug Administration on April 21 citing violations found in a February inspection of its Honolulu facility such as "pink slimy substance" dripping onto the conveyor of the pot washing machine, live cockroaches and flies, and mold growing on the windows of a refrigerator.

Gate Gourmet provides meals for Northwest, Delta, United, Hawaiian and Aloha airlines.

The company, which has locations in 30 countries, says it responded quickly to the April letter and contends the investigation of the August illnesses has not been able to definitely identify the source of the contamination, reports ABC News.

According to KRUA, Gate Gourmet spokesman John Bronson says it's his understanding that the facility had passed its latest U-S Food and Drug Administration inspection.

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