January 26, 2015

Queseria Bendita Listeria Soft Cheese Recall Updated

Queseria Bendita Listeria Outbreak Cheese Recall

The recall of Queseria Bendita soft cheeses and sour cream for Listeria monocytogenes contamination has been updated to include ALL best by dates. Previously, all products with best by dates up to 4/16/15 were recalled. There is an outbreak associated with this recall; three people in Washington state were sickened with listeriosis. Two people were hospitalized, and one person died. One illness was associated with a pregnancy. The recalled products are packaged in clear plastic wrappers or plastic tubs, and the best by dates are stamp coded next to a label. The cheeses and sour cream have shelf lives of up to 90 days. The last date of distribution was January 15, 2015. That means consumers probably still have them in their homes. All best by dates are recalled. The recalled … [Read more...]

Wonton Bean Sprouts Salmonella Outbreak Ends

Wonton Foods Bean Sprouts Salmonella Outbreak 12315

The Salmonella Enteritidis outbreak linked to bean sprouts produced by Wonton Foods is over, according to the CDC. A total of 115 people in 12 states were infected with the outbreak strain of the bacteria. Twenty-five percent of ill persons were hospitalized, and there were no deaths. No recall was ever announced for the contaminated product. The number of persons sickened by state is as follows: Connecticut (8), Maine (4), Maryland (6), Massachusetts (36), Montana (1), New Hampshire (6), New York (22), Ohio (3), Pennsylvania (18), Rhode Island (7), Vermont (3), and Virginia (1). The person in Montana traveled to the eastern U.S. during the time when exposure likely occurred. Illness onset dates ranged from September 30, 2014 to December 15, 2014. The age range for ill persons was … [Read more...]

Queseria Bendita Cheese Listeria Outbreak Highlights Past Recalls


The current outbreak of listeriosis linked to recalled Queseria Bendita soft cheeses is a reminder that these types of foods have often been recalled for Listeria monocytogenes contamination in the past. In the current outbreak, three people in Washington state have been sickened and one person has died. Over the past three years, there have been at least 25 recalls of soft cheese for Listeria monocytogenes in the U.S. and 9 recalls in Canada for the same reason. And there have been recalls of hard cheeses for Listeria too. Cheese is particularly vulnerable to Listeria contamination for a few reasons. Any cheese, whether hard or soft, made with raw or unpasteurized milk has a much higher risk of contamination, since Listeria bacteria are present in the farm environment. In fact, … [Read more...]

How Does Listeria Get into Soft Cheeses?


The current Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to recalled Queseria Bendita soft cheeses (and sour cream) has sickened three people and killed one person in Washington state. Soft cheeses are not recommended as part of a pregnancy diet, along with deli meats and unpasteurized milk for this reason. But why are soft cheeses a Listeria risk? First of all, any soft cheese made with unpasteurized milk is a risky food. Raw milk can, and does, contain many pathogenic bacteria from E. coli to Campylobacter to Listeria monocytogenes. The FDA developed a draft assessment on the risk of consumers contracting listeriosis from soft cheeses in 2013. They found that soft cheese made from unpasteurized milk has a risk of containing Listeria bacteria 50 to 160 mites higher than soft cheeses made … [Read more...]

Listeria Outbreak Linked to Recalled Queseria Bendita Cheese

Queseria Bendita Listeria Outbreak Cheese Recall

A Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to Queseria Bendita cheese of Yakima, Washington has sickened at least three people. One person has died, and two people have been hospitalized in this outbreak. Those sickened consumed soft cheeses made by Queseria Bendita; those cheeses have been recalled. The cheeses were distributed to Hispanic grocery stores in Washington and Oregon. Queseria Bendita also sold products from its on-site store in Yakima. The cheeses have been recalled as a result of an investigation and samples taken by the FDA. The company has agreed to cease production and distribution of all of its products. The recalled products are Panela cheese in 1 pound packages, Queso Fresco in 1 pound and 3 pound packages, Requeson cheese in 1 pound packages, and Cotija … [Read more...]

Genetic Link Between Bidart Brothers Apple Facility, Listeria Outbreak

Caramel Apple Listeria Monocytogenes Outbreak

Since December 22, 2014, consumers have been told not to consume any commercially prepared, prepackaged caramel apples because of a Listeria monocytogenes outbreak associated with those products. As the investigation unfolded, it became clear that Bidart Brothers, an apple packer in California, was the only grower to apply apples to Happy Apple Company and Merb's Candies, two recalled brands. Also on December 22, 2014, Bidart Brothers issued a recall of Granny Smith apples sold to customers who make caramel apples. That recall was expanded on December 24, 2014, to all Bidart Brothers caramel apple-making customers supplied with Granny Smith apples in 2014. The California Food Emergency Response Team was sent on December 23, 2014 to investigate the outbreak. Environmental samples were … [Read more...]

CDC Updates Listeria Caramel Apple Outbreak: 7 Dead

Caramel Apple Listeria Outbreak 11015

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has updated the investigation into the Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to commercially produced, prepackaged caramel apples. As of January 10, 2015, 32 people in 11 states are sickened in this outbreak; 31 people have been hospitalized, three have Listeria meningitis, and seven people have died. Listeriosis contributed to at least three of these deaths. It's not clear whether or not a Listeria infection contributed to the newly reported death. The case count remains the same as the last update on December 31, 2014, but one more person has died. The case count by state is: Arizona (4), California (2), Minnesota (4), Missouri (5), Nevada (1), New Mexico (6), North Carolina (1), Texas (4), Utah (1), Washington (1), and … [Read more...]

Listeria Caramel Apple Brands Sold in MN, Upper Midwest Named

Caramel Apple Listeria Monocytogenes Outbreak

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture just released a list of caramel apple brand names associated with the Listeria monocytogenes outbreak that is ongoing in 11 states. The apples were produced using produce from Bidart Brothers Apple Packing of Shafter, California. Bidart Brothers just recalled all of their Gala and Granny Smith apples produced in 2014 after Listeria monocytogenes was found in their packing plant. The recalled brands include Aamodt's, Abdallah, Angeli Foods, Candy Jar, Carnival, Celebration, Circle K, Finnottes, Grandma Bev's, Jerry's Foods, Karamel King, Kowalski's Markets, Kitchen Cravings, Lunds & Byerly's, Supermom's, and Wescott. These caramel apple brands were sold in Minnesota, North Dakota, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Michigan. The products were plain, and … [Read more...]

Consumers: Tell Us Stores, Brand Names in Bidart Apple Recall


Consumers are frustrated with the lack of information federal health officials are providing about the Bidart Brothers apple recall. Bidart Brothers apples have been linked to a caramel apple Listeria outbreak that has sickened at least 32 people in 11 states, killing six of them. Now, all the Gala and Granny Smith apples the company packed in 2014 have been recalled for Listeria, but consumers aren't being told which stores sold them or which brand names they were sold under. Instead, they are being advised to contact the store where they were purchased and ask who the supplier was. The comment sections for online stories about the recall have summed up the advice, euphemistically, in one word: ridiculous. So far, the two brand names for Bidart Bros. Gala and Granny Smith apples that … [Read more...]

Brands in Caramel Apple Listeria Outbreak: Happy Apple, Kroger, Karm’l Dapple, Merb’s Candies, Carnival, Kitchen Cravings

Fancy Caramel Apples

The brands of commercially prepared, prepackaged caramel apples involved in the multistate caramel apple Listeria monocytogenes outbreak as of January 6, 2014 include Happy Apple, Kroger, California Snack Foods Karm'l Dapple, Merb's Candies, Carnival, and Kitchen Cravings. The first four brands have been recalled; the second two were mentioned in the Minnesota Department of Health original outbreak press release. Thirty-two people have been sickened in this outbreak, 31 of those patients have been hospitalized. There have been six deaths related to this outbreak, and ten illnesses relating to a pregnancy. In addition, three children have developed serious complications. Attorney Fred Pritzker, who represents clients sickened by this bacteria, said, "This outbreak is already an absolute … [Read more...]

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