September 15, 2019

FDA Inspection Report of Blue Bell Brenham, Texas Plant

The FDA has released three inspection reports of the Blue Bell ice cream facilities: one in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, one in Brenham, Texas, and the third in Sylacauga, Alabama. We thought it would be a good idea to cover each inspection report, since they highlight problems at the company that may have led to the Listeria monocytogenes outbreak that has sickened ten people and killed three. The problem was first discovered at the plant in Texas. The inspections on the Brenham, Texas plant were conducted on March 16, 2015 through May 1, 2015, according to the FDA Form 483, which is published after inspections. The inspection discovered multiple problems discovered long before the recalls started . The Great Divide Bar manufactured on 1/12/15, and Chocolate Chip Country Cookie, … [Read more...]

Food Safety Flaws Noted at Blue Bell’s Texas Ice Cream Plant

The Blue Bell ice cream plant associated with the highly publicized Kansas Listeria outbreak exhibited multiple food safety flaws noted by a group of 11 FDA inspectors who visited the facility during the last half of April. According to the report of inspectional observations by the group, the Blue Bell plant continued to manufacture ice cream products for several days after the company's own sampling found Listeria monocytogenes around a drain that was not in direct contact with food. And by then, the Texas Department of State Health Services had notified Blue Bell that Listeria monocytogenes had been found in products from the plant. The company itself confirmed Listeria findings in its Great Divide Bar and Chocolate Chip Country Cookie, the report said. One of the observations made … [Read more...]

Attorney Discusses Blue Bell FDA Inspection Reports

Attorney Brendan Flaherty, who is representing people sickened in the Blue Bell ice cream Listeria outbreak, discusses the FDA inspection reports about the company's facility. Since ice cream is a ready-to-eat food with no consumer "kill step" of cooking, any finding of Listeria in the plant is a serious issue. Listeria bacteria was present in the Broken Arrow, Oklahoma Blue Bell processing plant as early as March 2013, according to the report. Blue Bell was notified of its "improper cleaning" and continued to ship product from the facility. The company knew they had a "pervasive Listeria infestation in their plant. In the Broken Arrow, Oklahoma plant, they sanitized using normal procedures, and subsequent tests found more Listeria. In other words, the cleaning processes were not … [Read more...]

CDC Updates Listeriosis Outbreak Linked to Blue Bell Ice Cream

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has updated its investigation into the multistate outbreak of listeriosis linked to Blue Bell Creameries ice cream products. Ten people from four states have been sickened so far. Three people have died, and all ten people have been hospitalized. The CDC has produced an infographic about the outbreak, which traces the illnesses and the facilities where products that made people sick were made. Listeria was found in Blue Bell ice cream products and in the Oklahoma and Texas facilities where they were made. Blue Bell recalled all of its products on the market made at all facilities on April 20, 2015. That recall includes all of its ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet, and frozen snacks, because they may be contaminated with Listeria … [Read more...]

Lawyer Discusses Filing Blue Bell Ice Cream Listeria Lawsuit

Food Poisoning Bulletin talked to attorney Ryan Osterholm about the Blue Bell ice cream Listeria monocytogenes outbreak and filing lawsuits. The CDC states that people have been sickened by Blue Bell products as far back as 2010. We asked Mr. Osterholm how this is possible. He said, "Listeriosis is a reportable illness. The Listeria bacteria is genetically fingerprinted in specialized labs known as 'PulseNet.'  If no genetic matches to other patients are found, no outbreak is announced. When this current outbreak was suspected, officials looked at the records and found genetic matches in PulseNet that added six cases, from 2010 to 2014, to the outbreak total. Thus, some of these patients were diagnosed with listeriosis five years ago, but the connection to Blue Bell ice cream wasn't … [Read more...]

Blue Bell Listeria Outbreak Spreads to 4 States, 10 Sick

The Listeria outbreak linked to Blue Bell ice cream has spread to four states, sickening 10 people and killing three. In addition to Kansas and Texas, illnesses have now been reported from Oklahoma and Arizona. Blue Bell has recalled all of its products currently on the market. Consumers who have Blue Bell ice cream in their freezers should not eat it as it may be contaminated with Listeria. So far, all 10 of the people identified as case patients in this outbreak contracted Listeria infections from ice cream they were served while hospitalized for unrelated illnesses. The newly reported cases occurred in January 2010 and March 2012. People at high risk for infection from Listeria include pregnant women, newborns, small children, seniors and those with weakened immune systems. … [Read more...]

Blue Bell Suspends Operations at Broken Arrow, OK Plant

After a Listeria monocytogenes outbreak in Kansas that sickened five people, Blue Bell is suspending operations at its Broken Arrow, Oklahoma plant. Ice cream produced at that plant was recalled for possible Listeria contamination late last month. Another Blue Bell Facility in Brenham, Texas, produced ice cream that was linked to the Kansas outbreak. Three of the patients sickened in the outbreak, which took place at the Via Christi hospital in Wichita, Kansas, died after they got sick. Of the four people interviewed by public health officials, all drank milkshakes made with a Blue Bell ice cream product called "Scoops". Listeria strains isolated from this product were "highly related" to sequences of Listeria taken from the patients, according to government reports. The statement on … [Read more...]

CDC Updates Blue Bell Creameries Ice Cream Listeria Outbreak

The CDC has updated their investigation of the Listeria monocytogenes outbreak in Kansas linked to Blue Bell Creameries ice cream products. The notice states, "based on the information CDC has at this time, we recommend that consumers do not eat any Blue Bell Brand products made at the Oklahoma production facility [in Broken Arrow] and that retailers and institutions do not sell or serve them." Five people have been sickened in this outbreak, and three have died. All five people were hospitalized for unrelated illnesses, and were served the ice cream while at the Via Christi hospital in Wichita, Kansas. The Kansas outbreak is linked to products made at the Blue Bell plant in Brenham, Texas. Attorney Fred Pritzker, who has won millions for people sickened in such outbreaks, said, … [Read more...]

Caramel Apple Listeria Lawsuit Filed on Behalf of Minnesota Man

A lawsuit was filed on behalf of a Minnesota man who allegedly contracted a Listeria infection, listeriosis, from contaminated caramel apples he purchased at a Cottage Grove, Minnesota, Cub Foods store. The complaint, filed in Fourth Judicial District Court in Hennepin County, names Bidart Bros. Inc. and Supervalu Inc. as defendants (Spear v. Bidart Bros. Inc, Supervalu Inc, Cub Foods, Case No. 27-CV-15-4555). The Minnesota man is one of thirty-five confirmed listeriosis cases in an outbreak linked to caramel apples made with Bidart Bros. apples and sold under the brand names Carnival, Happy Apples, and Merb’s Candies. People from 12 states were sickened: they live in Arizona, California, Colorado, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Texas, Utah, Washington, and … [Read more...]

Blue Bell Listeria Ice Cream Products Sold to Consumers Too

Some of the media reports about recalled Listeria contaminated Blue Bell Creameries ice cream, that sickened at least five people in Wichita, Kansas stated that the products made on the suspect line were only sold to food service facilities at institutions. But two retailers have recalled Blue Bell products: Kroger and Target. Consumers should check their freezers to see if they have any of the recalled ice cream products. The people sickened in this outbreak were at the Via Christi Hospital in Wichita, Kansas. Three of the five patients have died, according to the CDC and the Kansas Department of health. The Listeria strains in this particular outbreak are very rare. The recalled Kroger products are Chocolate Chip Country Cookie SKU # 196, Great Divide Bar SKU #108, Sour Pop Green … [Read more...]

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