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Gorgonzola Recalled Over Listeria Contamination

Gorgonzola Recalled Over Listeria Contamination


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Listeria bacteria has been linked to Italian cheese

Wikimedia/Jon Sullivan

Gorgonzola cheese has been recalled in Austria due to infection with Listeria bacteria.

There’s nothing like a good, smelly cheese, but the moldy stuff will be absent from some New Year’s platters in Austria this year after a massive recall due to Listeria contamination.

To be called Gorgonzola, the blue-veined cheese must be produced from milk from cows pastured in the Piedmont and Lombardy regions of Italy. According to The Local, Gorgonzola cheese produced by Italian manufacturer CasArrigoni has been recalled from sale after it was found to be infected with Listeria, a potentially deadly bacteria that is especially dangerous to the elderly, pregnant women, and people with compromised immune systems.

The infected cheese was reportedly recalled immediately from points of sale across Austria and nobody is reported to have been sickened yet, but eight people in Austria died in 2009 because of exposure to Listeria bacteria in cheese, and this summer at least 12 people are reported to have died in Denmark after eating lunch meat contaminated with the bacteria.


Lemons, Limes, Oranges, Potatoes Recalled in Several States Over Listeria Concerns

Freshouse𠅊 nationwide produce distributor—is recalling Valencia oranges, lemons, limes and red potatoes due to potential contamination with Listeria monocytogenes. According to a media release, recalled produce was shipped to distribution centers in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia and wholesalers in Maryland and North Carolina. Wegmans also confirmed in a separate recall notice that the produce was sold in their stores in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, Maryland and New York (Brooklyn and Harrison locations).

After Freshouse completed routine testing, they identified Listeria bacteria on a piece of equipment in their packing facility. The company said in a media release, “We have ceased the production and distribution of the product that was packed on the equipment in question and are taking corrective actions and continually evaluating our cleaning and sanitation regimes.”

The recalled items can be found below: 

Jamey Friedman, president of Freshouse said, “We voluntarily issued this recall out of an abundance of caution with the steadfast intent to minimize even the slightest risk to public health. We take food safety and this recall seriously. Freshouse is committed to providing consumers with fresh, nutritious, safe products.”

Thankfully, no illnesses have been reported to date. Symptoms of Listeria infection may include fever, headache, muscle stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea and vomiting. Listeria infection may also cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women, and it can be fatal to young children, the elderly or those with weakened immune systems.


Gorgonzola recall leads to shortages in shops, restaurants

Listeria concerns causing cheese shortage

Recalls of several brands of gorgonzola cheese over Listeria fears have left retailers to deal with a shortage.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has issued an advisory about four brands of the Italian blue cheese in the past month, three of them affecting multiple provinces.

Brands affected:

  • Ballarini – Gorgonzola D.O.P. Cremaverde, Gorgonzola Dolce DOP.
  • Igor – Gorgonzola Dolce, Gorgonzola Dolce DOP, Gorgonzola Igorcreme DOP 1/8 and Gorgonzola Piccante.
  • Il Villaggio – Gorgonzola Dolce Cheese.
  • 1800 Select Silver – Gorgonzola Verdi Dolce Italian Cheese (sold in Markham, Ont. only).

Since Italian law strictly regulates what can be called "gorgonzola" cheese, Ottawa retailers said that’s left them with few options.

DiVino Wine Studio co-owner Eric Diotte said they ran out over the weekend.

"The chef has been telling me he can't get it, he can't get… so we're in a crisis," he said.

"We have no cheese for our gorgonzola gnocchi."

No reports of illness

Bosa Jevtic stocks cheese at the popular deli Nicastro’s and said Gorgonzola has been nearly impossible to find.

"People used to have it on their table, now we don't have that product," she said.

"People are always asking what's wrong? When are we gonna get (it)?"

Cooks who can’t go without may end up going outside Italy’s borders, substituting with Roquefort from France or Stilton from England.

May be weeks before cheese brought in again

Domenic Benoit of Agropur, the company that imported the cheese into Canada, said the affected cheeses all came from a single Igor plant in Italy – the biggest producer of gorgonzola in the world.

"The safety of our product is our priority, it's going to take weeks – it's not a question of a week or two before the situation is stabalized," he said.

Benoit said the potential contamination was found in Canada, not at the plant, and they voluntarily recalled the products.

The CFIA said they have no reports of anyone becoming sick after eating a recalled brand of gorgonzola.

Listeria monocytogenes poisoning can cause diarrhea, vomiting and other gastrointestinal issues, followed in some cases by a brain infection or blood poisoning, which could be fatal.


The FDA Recalled 17 Soft Cheese Products Amid A Listeria Outbreak

Seven people across four states have been hospitalized.

Update, February 24, 2021: Early last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported seven Listeria-related illnesses across four states. Early investigations potentially linked the outbreak to soft cheese like queso fresco and the Food & Drug Administration has now issued a recall of certain El Abuelito cheeses.

El Abuelito Cheese of Paterson, New Jersey is recalling all Queso Fresco products due to possible Listeria contamination. All of those products with sell-by dates of March 28, 2021, are a part of the recall and were sold across multiple states in the Northeast region. The recall includes El Abuelito Cheeses distributed in Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York, Rio Grande Food Products distributed in Virginia, North Carolina, And Maryland, and Rio Lindo products distributed in North Carolina and Maryland.

Listeria infection can cause symptoms like nausea, fatigue, body aches, headache, and fever with immunocompromised individuals, people over 65, and those who are pregnant at a great risk of adverse reactions. If you happen to have any of the recalled items in your home, do not consume them and dispose of them immediately or return them to where you purchased them from for a full refund. You can view a full list of brands, product names, and UPC codes on the FDA's website.

Original Post, February 15, 2021: The Centers for Disease Control and Food & Drug Administration are investigating a Listeria outbreak that has impacted individuals in several states. Though the investigation is ongoing, the outbreak is thought to be linked to "Hispanic-style cheeses" like queso fresco.

There is no brand or type of cheese that has been determined as the source, but the investigation is looking into queso fresco, queso blanco, and queso panela. Seven people have been hospitalized with Listeria symptoms across Connecticut, Maryland, New York, and Virginia.

A general rule of thumb by the FDA is to make sure your fresh and soft cheeses like queso fresco are made with pasteurized milk and say so on the label and packaging. Pasteurization of milk generally kills the Listeria bacteria although if there are unsanitary conditions in a manufacturing plant pasteurized milk products can still be contaminated.

Listeria is a bacteria that causes adverse health affects like nausea, fatigue, body aches, headache, and fever. Communities at higher risk of harm from the Listeria bacteria are those that are 65 years of age or older and people who are pregnant. The FDA is advising individuals in either of those groups to not consume Hispanic-style fresh and soft cheeses while they continue to pinpoint the exact product and brand responsible for the multi-state outbreak.

The last recorded illness was on January 22 and Maryland has seen the most hospitalizations linked to the outbreak, with four out of the recorded seven people residing in the state. The FDA will continue providing related up-to-date information on their site.


Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams recalls all its products over listeria fears

A cone of Jeni’s Toasted Brioche with Butter and Jam ice cream.

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams has recalled all of its ice cream products nationwide and says it’s shutting its stores temporarily over concerns about possible listeria contamination, the company announced Thursday.

The company is ceasing all sales in the United States “until all products are ensured to be 100% safe,” Jeni’s said in a statement.

The recall includes “all ice creams, frozen yogurts, sorbets, and ice cream sandwiches for all flavors and containers,” and any product bearing the Jeni’s brand name.

“Our top priority is guaranteeing the safety of all consumers by taking every possible precaution,” John Lowe, Jeni’s chief executive, said in a statement. “We have decided to recall everything currently on retailer shelves, and we are closing our scoop shops until we are 100% confident every item we sell is safe.”

An employee at the Los Feliz location confirmed Thursday that the ice cream shop was closed indefinitely.

The company advised any customers who have purchased the products to throw them away or return them to the store where they were purchased for a full refund.

The Listeria monocytogenes bacteria can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections, especially in young children, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems, and has been known to cause miscarriages and stillbirths. Healthy adults may experience symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiff neck, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea.

The contamination was discovered after a sample randomly collected by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture tested positive for the bacteria, the company said.

So far, the company says, there have been no reports of illnesses linked to the recalled products.

The boutique ice cream purveyor started in 2002 in Columbus, Ohio’s North Market. It now has more than 20 retail locations nationwide, including one in Los Angeles’ Los Feliz neighborhood, and its products are widely available in markets like Whole Foods and Gelson’s in the Los Angeles area.

Listeria concerns have prompted a spate of food recalls recently. Earlier this week, Blue Bell Creameries expanded an ongoing recall effort, taking all of its ice cream products off the shelves in a multi-state listeria outbreak that sickened eight people. Three of those people died.

Earlier this month, Sabra Dipping Co. recalled 30,000 cases of its popular hummus dips, also because of concerns that they might be tainted with listeria.


Smoked salmon product sold in B.C. recalled over possible Listeria contamination

A brand of smoked salmon sold in B.C. is being recalled due to possible Listeria contamination.

A recall of One Ocean brand Sliced Smoked Wild Sockeye Salmon was issued on Jan. 27 and expanded Wednesday to include additional product information, according to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

The CFIA advised people not to eat the product. Food contaminated with Listeria may not look or smell spoiled, but can still make you sick. The agency says no illnesses have been reported.

1:47 How food recalls work

The agency said recalled products should be thrown out or returned to the store where they were purchased.


Multiple Ice Cream Brands Recalled Due to Listeria Worries

by Aaron Kassraie, AARP, April 30, 2021 | Comments: 0

Almost 100 ice cream and sherbet products sold under multiple brand names were recalled due to possible contamination with listeria, according to a notice from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

What to Do With Recalled Ice Cream

Anyone who purchased a recalled product should throw it away or return it to the place of purchase for a refund. Those with additional questions may contact Velvet Ice Cream at 800-589-5000 (Ext. 237) from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST, Monday through Friday. Or visit its website at velveticecream.com/contact-us.

The voluntary recall applies to seven brands sold by Ohio-based Velvet Ice Cream and made on or after March 24. The brands are:

  • Buehler's
  • Discount Drug Mart
  • North Star
  • Ruggle's
  • Super Dip
  • Velvet
  • Whale of a Pail

Although no illnesses have been linked to the products, the issue was identified as a result of the company's routine testing.

The ice cream was sold in drug stores, convenience stores and supermarkets in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia. Check the FDA's recall notice for a full list of the recalled products with corresponding product codes, found at the bottom or side of each container.

"We're conducting this voluntary recall in cooperation with the FDA out of consideration for the well-being and safety of our customers and consumers,” Velvet Ice Cream CEO Luconda Dager said in a statement. “We continue to be committed to serving consumers with high quality ice cream and sherbet products."

Memorial Day Sale

Symptoms of a listeria infection

Listeriosis, the infection caused by eating food contaminated with the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes, most often causes sickness in adults 65 and older, people with weakened immune systems, pregnant women and newborns. Symptoms may include headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, fever, muscle aches and convulsions. Pregnant women typically experience only fever, fatigue and muscle aches, but a listeria infection during pregnancy can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth, premature delivery or life-threatening infection of the newborn.

Americans 65 and over are four times as likely as others to get a listeria infection.

People usually report symptoms one to four weeks after eating food contaminated with listeria. But some people have reported symptoms from as early as the day of exposure to as late as 70 days after.

About 1,600 people in the U.S. get listeriosis each year, resulting in about 260 deaths, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates. Americans 65 and over are four times as likely as others to get a listeria infection.

Listeriosis is diagnosed by testing a sample of body tissue or fluid, such as blood, spinal fluid or the placenta. It is treated with antibiotics.


Dog Food Is Being Recalled Over A Possible Salmonella And Listeria Risk For Dogs And Humans

The product was shipped to brick-and-mortar stores nationwide.

Update, March 18, 2021: A recall that was announced earlier this month and included pet food from Bravo Packing, Inc. in New Jersey has now been expanded to include all of its pet food and bones in all package sizes. The recall initially only included two-pound and five-pound plastic sleeves of the products.

The concern is that the pet food is potentially contaminated with salmonella and listeria that can affect not only the pets but can also affect also humans if they come into contact with the food without properly disinfecting the area. An FDA inspection found the pet food samples from Bravo Packing positive for the presence of both salmonella and listeria.

A comprehensive list of the recalled items can be found on the FDA website, including the product names and packaging sizes.

Original Post, March 4, 2021: The Food & Drug Administration has announced a recall of pet food due to potential salmonella and listeria contamination. Not only can these bacteria cause adverse effects on your pet if they consume it, but coming in contact with the pet food when serving it can lead to symptoms in humans as well.

Bravo Packing, Inc. in Carneys Point, NJ, has issued a recall of its ground beef and Performance Dog raw pet food. The concern is that these products may be contaminated with salmonella and listeria after a routine FDA inspection of Performance Dog and ground beef samples from Bravo Packing tested positive for them both.

If consumed by your pets, you may notice symptoms of infection like lethargy, diarrhea, bloody stools, fever, or vomiting. Pets may also show signs of salmonella infection by decreased appetite, fever, or abdominal pain but can also be infected even without showing symptoms. If your pet has consumed the product contact your veterinarian for a check-up.

As for humans, there is a possibility for pet owners to become infected if they handled the recalled pet food without washing their hands or the surrounding surfaces. Young children, elderly individuals, and those that are pregnant are especially at risk of serious and sometimes fatal salmonella infection. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping, and fever.

If you have any of the recalled products in your possession throw them away and call Bravo Packing, Inc. at 856-299-1044 with any questions. Both products come in two-pound and five-pound plastic sleeves and were shipped to brick-and-mortar retail stores or consumers directly nationwide.


Some Raw Dog Food Is Being Recalled Over Salmonella And Listeria Fears

Update, March 18, 2021: A recall that was announced earlier this month and included pet food from Bravo Packing, Inc. in New Jersey has now been expanded to include all of its pet food and bones in all package sizes. The recall initially only included two-pound and five-pound plastic sleeves of the products.

The concern is that the pet food is potentially contaminated with salmonella and listeria that can affect not only the pets but can also affect also humans if they come into contact with the food without properly disinfecting the area. An FDA inspection found the pet food samples from Bravo Packing positive for the presence of both salmonella and listeria.

A comprehensive list of the recalled items can be found on the FDA website, including the product names and packaging sizes.

Original Post, March 4, 2021: The Food & Drug Administration has announced a recall of pet food due to potential salmonella and listeria contamination. Not only can these bacteria cause adverse effects on your pet if they consume it, but coming in contact with the pet food when serving it can lead to symptoms in humans as well.

Bravo Packing, Inc. in Carneys Point, NJ, has issued a recall of its ground beef and Performance Dog raw pet food. The concern is that these products may be contaminated with salmonella and listeria after a routine FDA inspection of Performance Dog and ground beef samples from Bravo Packing tested positive for them both.

If consumed by your pets, you may notice symptoms of infection like lethargy, diarrhea, bloody stools, fever, or vomiting. Pets may also show signs of salmonella infection by decreased appetite, fever, or abdominal pain but can also be infected even without showing symptoms. If your pet has consumed the product contact your veterinarian for a check-up.

As for humans, there is a possibility for pet owners to become infected if they handled the recalled pet food without washing their hands or the surrounding surfaces. Young children, elderly individuals, and those that are pregnant are especially at risk of serious and sometimes fatal salmonella infection. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping, and fever.

If you have any of the recalled products in your possession throw them away and call Bravo Packing, Inc. at 856-299-1044 with any questions. Both products come in two-pound and five-pound plastic sleeves and were shipped to brick-and-mortar retail stores or consumers directly nationwide.


Cheese recalled over listeria fears

An Italian-made cheese sold in Canada has been recalled over concerns it may be contaminated with listeria.

Mauri-brand Gorgonzola cheese has been sold in Alberta, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario and Quebec, said the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Its importer, Arla Foods in Concord, Ont., is voluntarily recalling the product, which has the code L. 3100012 on its packaging and a best before date of Jan. 7, 2013.

Food contaminated with the bacteria listeria may not spell or look spoiled. Eating food tainted with the bacteria can cause listeriosis, which can lead to high fever, severe headaches, neck stiffness, nausea or death.

A 2008 listeria outbreak -- largely connected to sandwich meats -- infected hundreds of people in Canada and killed 22.

Pregnant women, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems are particularly at risk.

There have been no reported illnesses associated with the Gorgonzola recall.


Bagged popcorn recalled over possible listeria contamination

The popcorn manufacturer “Popcorn, Indiana” has issued a voluntary recall of several ready-to-eat bags of popcorn due to a possible contamination of Listeria monocytogenes – bacteria that can cause serious infection.

According to Popcorn, Indiana’s product recall site, bags that were distributed on or after Aug. 8th, 2012 with ‘Best By’ dates between Feb. 4th, 2013, and March 12th, 2013, should be thrown away or returned for a full refund or replacement. The bags were colored red and came in various sizes.

Consumers can also determine which bags are being recalled by checking the Bag UPC (code) located in the nutritional panel on bottom of the bag. A full list of recalled bags can be found on the company’s website.

Apart from the recalled bags, Popcorn, Indiana - part of the company Dale and Thomas Popcorn - maintains that the rest of their products are safe for consumption.

“Nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of those who buy our popcorn and the employees who make up our company,” Popcorn, Indiana states on their website. “We hold ourselves to standards that are among the highest in the industry, and as such, we regularly conduct testing beyond FDA requirements.”

Listeria can be a serious infection that usually affects elderly people, pregnant women, infants and those that with weakened immune systems, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Often caused by eating contaminated food, listeria symptoms occur within two months of eating the contaminated food and include diarrhea and other gastrointestinal symptoms, followed by high fever and muscle aches. Listeria infection is easily treated with antibiotics but can sometimes be fatal – particularly for the elderly or those with severe medical problems.



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