700 Airbus Workers Reportedly Got Sick After Feasting on Lobster and Foie Gras at the Company's Christmas Meal One worker told a French newspaper that the experience was worse than childbirth.

By Juliana Kaplan

Key Takeaways

  • Workers at aerospace company Airbus Atlantic got a Christmas surprise after a company dinner.
  • A December 15 dinner at the company's restaurant in Western France led to some workers falling ill.
  • French health authorities are investigating the incident, and employees were able to return to work.
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Tetra Images/Getty Images via Business Insider

This article originally appeared on Business Insider.

Workers at Airbus Atlantic reportedly got an unpleasant Christmas surprise after a company dinner: Clinical vomiting and diarrhea.

According to the Guardian and the BBC, French health authorities are investigating after around 700 workers at Airbus Atlantic fell ill following the aerospace company's dinner for 2,600 workers. On the menu, per the Guardian: Lobster, foie gras, and scallops, along with ice cream logs and mousse for dessert.

The December 15 dinner's fallout has led France's Agence Régionale de Santé to investigate, according to the Guardian, with the ARS saying that impacted workers showed "clinical signs of vomiting and/or diarrhea." The agency said in a statement to the Guardian that investigations into the incident are continuing. One worker told French newspaper Ouest France that the experience was worse than childbirth.

Airbus told the Guardian that nobody was "seriously ill," and told the BBC and CNN that only about 100 workers were ultimately taken ill. The health authorities are now reportedly handling the Christmas dinner case, with questionnaires sent to everyone who attended. Airbus did not immediately respond to BI's request for comment.

It's not the first time that workers have felt sick after enjoying their employer's holiday festivities: In 2016, around 70 staffers at the New Mexico Department of Health fell ill with food poisoning after the agency's holiday party. The Airbus dinner took place at the company's own restaurant in Western France, per the Guardian.

In a statement to CNN, an Airbus spokesperson said that all employees were back at work the Monday following the incident.

"This appears to be an isolated event and all employees are recovering well," the Airbus spokesperson said in a statement to CNN. "The health of our employees remains our primary concern and we are fully cooperating with the ARS health agency to identify the cause of the illness and ensure this cannot happen again in the future."

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