Delta ranks at the top in annual survey of healthiest meals in the sky

Delta Air Lines made this announcement:

The Diet Detective is once again giving Delta’s on-board food high marks, recently calling Delta’s domestic food offerings “excellent” in its annual Airline Food Investigation. The airline landed the top spot among large network carriers and tied for healthiest airline with Virgin America among all U.S.-based airlines with a score of four out of five stars.

Nutritionist Charles Platkin, also known as the Diet Detective, praised the airline’s commitment to health conscious food offerings, highlighting Flight Fuel, Delta’s onboard menu that focuses on fresh ingredients, its ongoing partnership with Luvo and its introduction of free Main Cabin meals earlier this year.

“Delta is doing an incredible job focusing on improving its food, transparency and communication,” Platkin said. “It is the clear leader among the big carriers by a long shot. While calories are surely not everything, it’s always nice to see a decrease; the overall calories are down from 527 to 480.”

He lauded Delta for providing a key on the menu for snack items that are non-GMO, vegan, gluten-free, kosher and lacto-ovo vegetarian and for offering the only non-GMO snack box — the Tapas box — among U.S. airlines.

Snack-wise, Platkin said almonds or the Tapas Snack Box are customers’ healthiest choices.

He also praised Delta for continuing to work with Luvo, who the airline has worked with since 2013, to create nutritious meal options available for purchase onboard as well as through the airline’s free Main Cabin meal program.

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Delta continues to heavily focus on providing healthy choices onboard with its rotating Flight Fuel menu, Main Cabin snack offerings and free Main Cabin meal options. In May, the airline introduced four new Main Cabin snacks, including three gluten free options for customers with dietary restrictions. Earlier this year, the airline also tripled its free Main Cabin meal options and refreshed its Flight Fuel menu to include highlights such as a Tillamook Cheese & Fruit plate, featuring local cheese from the Oregon dairy co-op.

These latest enhancements are part of the airline’s multi-billion dollar investment in the customer experience that includes a cabin modernization program featuring new seats, seatback entertainment systems with free entertainment, free mobile messaging, high-capacity overhead bins, access to Wi-Fi on nearly all flights, an Alessi-designed collection of serviceware, Westin Heavenly® In-Flight Bedding, chef-curated meals paired with wines hand-selected by Master Sommelier Andrea Robinson, noise-canceling LSTN headphones and more.

In the 2016-2017 survey the airline landed t​he top spot among large network carriers and placed second among all U.S.-based airlines.

Platkin is a nationally syndicated nutrition and public health advocate and Distinguished Lecturer at the CUNY School of Public Health in New York City.​

Photos: Delta Air Lines.