Cider giant Bulmer faces court action over an outbreak of legionnaires' disease in Hereford two years ago which claimed the lives of two people.
It is thought the disease originated in cooling towers at the firm's flagship factory headquarters.
The company will be summonsed by the Health and Safety Executive in connection with its management of the risk of legionella bacteria at the factory. International water treatment firm Nalco, which had a cleaning contract with Bulmer, will receive a similar summons.
The HSE has been investigating since legionella bacteria was found in Bulmer's cooling towers in November 2003.
Court proceedings against Bulmer - which is the world's biggest cider maker and produces the famous Woodpecker, Strongbow and Scrumpy Jack brands - and Cheshire-based Nalco are expected in the new year.
A task force examined water, heating and airconditioning systems across Hereford in a bid to locate the source of legionella bacteria in November 2003 and Bulmer was named as a possible source.
It immediately closed its cooling plant but continued production. Although no one at Bulmer's contracted legion-naires, 28 people were diagnosed with it during the out-break and two died.
Charles Davies, aged 76, went to Hereford County Hospital on October 15 after a fall and died after a transfer to Wolverhampton Hospital. At an inquest it was revealed Mr Davies died from pneumonia and that exposure to legion-naires' disease caused or contributed to his death. Bulmer's factory was named during the inquest as the likely source of the bacteria.
Just over a month later, 56-year-old Lynne Davies, who lived near the Bulmer factory, died after being diagnosed with the disease.
The company said that it had cooperated fully with the HSE and local authorities to eradicate the outbreak and investigate the circumstances.