Here’s what we can VERIFY about the recall of cheese, yogurt and sour cream products sold by Rizo-Lopez brands.
Certain brands of one of America’s favorite foods have been recalled due to suspected listeria contamination.
“Listeria cheese recall” and similar searches have become popular Google searches over the last couple of days.
Is there a cheese recall for potential listeria contamination?
Yes, there is a cheese recall for potential listeria contamination.
WHAT WE FOUND
Rizo-López Foods, Inc. and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have announced a voluntary recall on all cheeses and other dairy products made in their facility due to potential contamination by listeria bacteria.
Listeria was discovered in a sample of Rizo Bros cotija in January 2024. The FDA then found listeria in an environmental sample collected during an on-site inspection of the Rizo-López Foods, Inc. facility, which allowed investigators to link the brands to the decade-old outbreak.
Listeria causes listeriosis, which is a serious infection most likely to sicken pregnant women and their newborns, adults aged 65 or older and people with weakened immune systems, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says.
The CDC says the recalled products were sold nationwide and at retail deli counters under these brand names:
365 Whole Foods Market
The recall includes all “sell by” dates of cheese, yogurt and sour cream sold by the above brands, the FDA says. The cheeses include queso fresco, cotija, oaxaca, fresco, panela, queso crema, queso para freir, queso seco and ricotta, sometimes called requesón. A number of Latin American sour creams are also included.
Consumers should check their refrigerators and freezers to find and dispose of any products sold under any of the recalled brand names, the FDA says. Any surfaces or containers touched by the recalled products should be carefully cleaned and sanitized to reduce the risk of cross-contamination. The FDA warns that listeria can survive in refrigerated temperatures and can easily spread to other foods and surfaces.
People not in the at-risk groups for listeria can still be infected by listeriosis; however, they rarely become seriously ill. While pregnant people typically experience only fever, fatigue and muscle aches, it can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth, premature delivery or a life-threatening infection of the newborn, the FDA says.
Symptoms of listeriosis usually begin two weeks after eating contaminated food but may sometimes start as early as the same day or as late as 10 weeks after. Mild symptoms may include fever, muscle aches, nausea, tiredness, vomiting and diarrhea. Symptoms of severe infection may include headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance and convulsions.
Most people recover from mild forms of listeriosis without the help of antibiotics. However, severe listeriosis illness is typically treated with antibiotics. Severe listeriosis can be fatal for people in at-risk groups.
The current outbreak includes cases dating back to 2014. When the CDC investigated the outbreak between 2017 and 2021, it identified queso fresco and other similar cheeses as a potential source of the outbreak. But the CDC was unable to identify a specific brand as the source at the time.