The Food and Drug Administration has confirmed that “On the Go” ice cream cups are behind foodborne illnesses.

The ice cream, made by Real Kosher Ice Cream of Brooklyn, NY, has been found to be contaminated with the same strain of Listeria monocytogenes as that found in samples from two patients. Both patients, one in New York and the other in Pennsylvania, have been so sick that they required hospitalization.

The company issued a recall of certain ice cream products earlier this month after a link was established between the sick people and its products.

In information released yesterday, the FDA confirmed that Listeria Monocytogenes matching the sick people’s samples was found in an unopened sample of the implicated ice cream during testing by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.

Also, the New York Department of Agriculture and Markets found the outbreak strain of Listeria Monocytogenes in five finished samples of “Soft Serve On the Go” ice cream cups collected from the company’s manufacturing facility.

The ice cream was distributed in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Washington D.C., Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Massacheassetts, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia.

The company is recalling all flavors of its Soft Serve On The Go 8-ounce ice cream cups”

  • Soft Serve On The Go Vanilla Chocolate 
  • Soft Serve On The Go Razzle
  • Soft Serve On The Go Caramel 
  • Soft Serve On The Go Parve Vanilla Chocolate
  • Soft Serve On The Go Sorbet Strawberry Mango
  • Soft Serve On The Go Lite Peanut Butter

The FDA is continuing to investigate the outbreak along with state officials and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

Additional patients are likely part of the outbreak because of the lag time between when people become ill and when testing, confirmation testing and reporting are done. Also, it can take up to 70 days for symptoms of Listeria infections to develop. 

About Listeria infections
Food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes may not look or smell spoiled but can still cause serious and sometimes life-threatening infections. Anyone who has eaten any of the recalled ice cream and developed symptoms of Listeria infection should seek medical treatment and tell their doctors about the possible Listeria exposure.

Also, anyone who has eaten any of the recalled products should monitor themselves for symptoms during the coming weeks because it can take up to 70 days after exposure to Listeria for symptoms of listeriosis to develop. 

Symptoms of Listeria infection can include vomiting, nausea, persistent fever, muscle aches, severe headache, and neck stiffness. Specific laboratory tests are required to diagnose Listeria infections, which can mimic other illnesses. 

Pregnant women, the elderly, young children, and people such as cancer patients who have weakened immune systems are particularly at risk of serious illnesses, life-threatening infections, and other complications. Although infected pregnant women may experience only mild, flu-like symptoms, their infections can lead to premature delivery, infection of the newborn, or even stillbirth.

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