October 19, 2021

Where Were El Abuelito Cheeses Recalled For Possible Listeria Sold?

A deadly multistate Listeria monocytogenes outbreak has been linked to recalled El Abuelito queso fresco cheeses. Eleven people are sick; ten have been hospitalized. And one person who lived in Maryland has sadly died. Many of the cheeses the company made have been recalled. But where were El Abuelito cheeses recalled for possible Listeria contamination sold?

Where Were El Abuelito Cheeses Recalled For Possible Listeria Sold?

The Connecticut Department of Health found the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes in a sample of El Abuelito queso fresco cheese taken from a store where an ill person shopped. The first recall was issued on February 19, 2021.

That recall was for El Abuelito Queso Fresco Regular, Queso Fresco Promoción, Queso Fresco de Hoja, Queso Fresco, and Queso Fresco Guatemala. Also recalled were Rio Grande Food Products Chirilagua Queso de Hacienda, Queso Fresco Campestre con Hoja, Queso Fresco Campestre Artesanal, Queso Fresco con Hoja, Queso Fresco Yorito, Queso Fresco Olancho, Cuajada Fresca Guatemalteca, Cuajada Fresca Hondureña, and Cuajada Fresca Salvadoreña. The Rio Lindo brand products recalled include Queso Fresco Mexicano, Queso Fresco Hondureño, and Queso Fresco Salvadoreño.

The El Abuelito Cheese brands were distributed in Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York; the Rio Grande Food Products brands were distributed in Virginia, North Carolina, and Maryland; and the Rio Lindo products were distributed in North Carolina and Maryland. The products were distributed through Feb 16, 2021 and have sell by dates through March 28, 2021.

After an FDA inspection of the El Abuelito plant, more products were recalled on February 27, 2021. They include Quesillo (Oaxaca and string cheese) and Requeson (ricotta). All Quesillo products with sell by dates through April 16, 2021, and all Requeson products with sell by dates through March 14, 2021 are recalled. They include the brand names El Abuelito, El Viejito, El Paisano, El Sabrosito, La Cima, Quesos Finos, San Carlos, and Ideal.

But the FDA recall notice does not state where that last group of brand name cheeses were sold. The distribution paragraph from the queso fresco recall is simply repeated, with the list of new brand names added at the end. And there is an issue with the distribution map on the FDA outbreak investigation page as well.

The distribution map includes the states Illinois, Indiana, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia, and Georgia. But Georgia, Indiana, Massachusetts, and Illinois are not mentioned in the FDA recall notices.

The FDA has posted a list of retailers that may or may not have received these products. And they do state that the cheeses may have been further distributed to other states as well.

The best thing to do at this point is to look for El Abuelito products and go by the brand name, name of the cheese, and the UPC numbers and expiration dates listed on the FDA recalls. Ask your grocer if the cheese you purchased or want to buy was made by El Abuelito. If he or she doesn’t know, do not buy it, or throw it away if you have already purchased it.

And if you ate any of the recalled cheeses, monitor your health for the symptoms of listeriosis, which can take up to 70 days to appear. Those symptoms include high fever, stiff neck, severe headache, muscle aches, nausea, and diarrhea. Pregnant women can suffer miscarriage, stillbirth, and premature labor, and newborns can be infected, if she contracts this illness. But the illness in pregnant women manifests as mild symptoms that seem like the flu. If you do feel sick, see your doctor.

The Food Poisoning Attorneys At Pritzker Hageman 1-888-377-8900

If you or a loved one have been sickened with a Listeria monocytogenes infection after eating recalled El Abuelito cheeeses, please contact our experienced attorneys for help at 1-888-377-8900 or 612-338-0202.

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