Vulto Creamery initiated a nationwide recall Tuesday of all lots of four types of its raw milk cheeses and stopped production at its Walton, NY, plant because the FDA found Listeria monocytogenes in one of the products.
The recall is for all lots of Vulto Creamery’s Ouleout, Miranda, Heinennellie and Willowemoc soft wash-rind raw milk cheeses, according to the recall notice on the Food and Drug Administration’s website. The company is requesting that the cheese be returned, rather than destroyed.
“Consumers that have any of these soft raw milk cheeses from Vulto Creamery should return the cheese to the purchase location for a refund,” according to the recall notice.
“Food and cheese wholesalers and retailers with any of the Vulto Creamery soft, wash-rind raw milk cheeses on hand should immediately remove these products from common storage coolers and quarantine these cheeses in a secured area of a cooler. Any wholesaler or distributor that has any of the four cheeses should contact Vulto Creamery to receive instructions on what to do with the cheese. No recalled cheese should be destroyed until Vulto Creamery has been notified and agrees.”
Vulto Creamery distributed the raw milk cheeses — made from unpasteurized milk — nationwide. Most were sold at retail locations in the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic States, California, Chicago, Portland and Washington D.C., according to the recall.
Officials with Vulto Creamery decided to voluntarily recall the cheeses after the FDA found the bacterial pathogen Listeria monocytogenes in lot number 617 of its Ouleout. Also contributing to the recall was “possible contamination” of Ouleout lot number 623, according to the recall notice.
The production of the products has been suspended while FDA and the company continue to investigate the source of the problem.
Listeria monocytogenes can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, pregnant women and others with weakened immune systems, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, Listeria infection can cause miscarriages, stillbirths and fetal infection among pregnant women.
Anyone who has eaten any of the recalled cheese and developed symptoms of Listeria infection should seek medical attention and tell their doctors about the possible exposure to the bacteria. It can take up to 70 days for symptoms to develop after ingesting Listeria, so anyone who has eaten the recalled cheese is urged to monitor themselves for symptoms during the coming weeks.
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