July 31, 2021

El Abuelito Cheese Listeria Outbreak Ends With 13 Sick, 1 Death

The El Abuelito cheese Listeria monocytogenes outbreak has ended with 13 people sick, 12 hospitalized, and one death, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The patients live in four states on the east coast. The case count by state is Connecticut (1), Maryland (5), New York (4), and Virginia (3). Illness onset dates range from October 20, 2020 to March 17, 2021. Twelve of the illnesses occurred in 2021. The patient age range is from less than 1 to 75 years. Twelve of the patients were Hispanic. One death was reported from Maryland. Four people got sick during their pregnancy, resulting in two pregnancy losses and one premature birth; the fourth person remained pregnant after recovering. State and local public health officials interviewed the patients … [Read more...]

El Abuelito Cheeses Were More Widely Distributed Than First Thought

UPDATE 3/9/21: El Abuelito cheeses were also sold in Rhode Island. The FDA has updated its investigation into the deadly multistate Listeria monocytogenes outbreak that is linked to recalled El Abuelito queso fresco and has revealed that El Abuelito cheeses were more widely distributed than first thought. The case count still stands at 11 sick, with 10 hospitalized and one death. Four patients were from Maryland and four from New York, with one from Connecticut and two from Virginia. The recalls are also unchanged. The first recall, issued on February 19, 2021, after whole genome sequencing testing conducted by the state of Connecticut found the outbreak strain in a sample of El Abuelito queso fresco, was for El Abuelito Queso Fresco as well as the brands Rio Grande and Rio Lindo … [Read more...]

El Abuelito Listeria Pregnancy Related Illnesses Added to Outbreak Total

Two El Abuelito Listeria pregnancy related illnesses were added to the listeriosis soft cheese outbreak total last week by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). That company's queso fresco cheese was recalled earlier this month because lab tests conducted by the Connecticut Department of Health found the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes in one sample of the product. Also last week, two more types of El Abuelito cheese were recalled: Quesillo (Oaxaca and string cheese) and Requeson (ricotta). The outbreak patient age range went from 45 to 75 with seven ill in the first outbreak notice to less than 1 year to 75 with ten sick in the latest notice, indicating that an infant was sickened. The outbreak notice states "Two illnesses are pregnancy-related." The CDC … [Read more...]

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? 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 … [Read more...]

Deadly El Abuelito Listeria Outbreak Case Count Rises to 11 Sick

The CDC and FDA have updated their investigation of the now deadly El Abuelito Listeria outbreak. As of March 1, 2021, eleven people in four states are sick. Ten people have been hospitalized, and one person who lived in Maryland has died. You can read the outbreak notice, which has not been updated with this new information, in Spanish here. The patient case count by state is: Connecticut (1), Maryland (4), New York (4), and Virginia (2). The new patient lives in Virginia. The patient age range is from less than one year to 75. Ten of the patients are Hispanic, and six are female. On February 28, 2021, El Abuelito Cheese Inc. recalled Quesillo and Requeson cheeses in addition to the previously recalled queso fresco cheeses that were made at the same facility. The queso fresco … [Read more...]

El Abuelito Quesillo and Requeson Cheeses Recalled For Listeria Risk

El Abuelito is expanding its recall of queso fresco cheeses on February 19, 2021 to include El Abuelito Quesillo and Requeson cheeses in addition to recalling all Queso Fresco products for possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. Queso fresco is fresh, soft cheese; Quesillo is Oaxaca and string cheese; and Requeson is ricotta. There is a multistate Listeria monocytogenes outbreak that has sickened at least 10 people in four states that is linked to some El Abuelito queso fresco cheese products through whole genome sequencing conducted by the Connecticut Department of Health. Nine of those patients have been hospitalized, and two of the illnesses are pregnancy-related. All Queso Fresco products with sell by dates through March 28, 2021 (032821); all Quesillo products with … [Read more...]

El Abuelito Quesillo and Requeson Cheese Recalled in Listeria Outbreak

The FDA and CDC are investigating a multistate outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes infections linked to El Abuelito queso fresco cheese. As part of this investigation and after an on-site inspection, the government is now recommending that consumers avoid El Abuelito Quesillo and Requeson cheese as well. El Abuelito Quesillo (Oxaca, string cheese), and Requeson (Ricotta) cheeses are manufactured or handled in the same facility as the Queso Fresco products that are linked through whole genome sequencing to this outbreak. This recommendation does not include any additional products with the El Abuelito brand because they are not manufactured or handled in the same facility. This includes El Abuelito Meat, Panela cheese, cotija cheese, mole, crema centroamericana, and crema … [Read more...]

CDC: Do Not Eat El Abuelito Cheese For Possible Listeria Contamination

The CDC is joining the FDA in warning the public: do not eat El Abuelito cheese because it may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes bacteria. The cheese is linked, through whole genome sequencing testing, to the outbreak strain of Listeria that has sickened ten people in four states. Earlier this month Connecticut officials found the outbreak strain of Listeria in samples of El Abuelito queso fresco cheese that was taken from a store where an ill person bought that cheese. The government says that other El Abuelito cheeses that were made or handled in the same facility as the queso fresco cheese have not been recalled, but officials are concerned that they may be contaminated and could make people sick. Investigators are trying to determine whether or not all cheese products … [Read more...]

FDA Warns Against All El Abuelito Cheese In Listeria Outbreak Investigation

The FDA warns against all El Abuelito cheese in the most current Listeria monocytogenes outbreak investigation notice that was posted today. The notice states, "Out of an abundance of caution, and due to the severity of Listeria infection, the FDA is expanding its warning to include all El Abuelito brand cheeses until more information is known. According to the firm’s website, this includes queso fresco, Oaxaca cheese, cotija cheese, and crema." Whole genome sequencing has linked El Abuelito queso fresco cheese to the outbreak. On February 19, 2021, tests conducted by the Connecticut State Laboratory determined that the Listeria monocytogenes found in a sample of the cheese purchased at a grocery store in that state is a match to the outbreak strain. El Abuelito Cheese recalled … [Read more...]

El Abuelito Is Recalling Queso Fresco For Possible Listeria Contamination

El Abuelito is recalling Queso Fresco cheese products because of possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. There is a current ongoing multistate Listeria monocytogenes outbreak that has sickened seven people in four states that the FDA and CDC say is linked to Hispanic style soft and fresh cheese. All El Abuelito Queso Fresco products with sell by dates through March 28, 2021 (032821) have been recalled. The products are sold as El Abuelito Cheese brand, which was distributed in Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York; Rio Grande Food Products brand, which was sold in Virginia, North Carolina, and Maryland; and Rio Lindo brand, which was distributed in North Carolina and Maryland. The products were distributed through February 16, 2021 and were available in … [Read more...]

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