If you love cheese, you might want to check your fridge and pantry before you indulge in your favorite dairy product. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recently announced a recall of 1,400 pounds of cheese from Cooperstown Cheese Company, a New York-based cheesemaker, due to potential listeria contamination.

Listeria monocytogenes is a type of bacteria that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in people with weakened immune systems, such as young children, elderly people, pregnant women, and those with chronic diseases.

Symptoms of listeria infection may include fever, headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea. In pregnant women, listeria can also cause miscarriages, stillbirths, or infections in the newborns1.The recall affects several varieties of cheese products that were purchased, sold, or distributed from June 21, 2023 to July 10, 2023 in New York State. The products include Jersey Girl, Toma Celena, SK, Jersey Gold, Marielle, Jersey Girl with garlic/rosemary, Jersey Girl spring onion, Bobby’s got the Blues, Toma Torino, Jersey Gold with garlic, and Abbie.

 The products are labeled with Cooperstown Cheese Company labels that contain the company contact information1.The company discovered the presence of listeria during routine environmental testing and an FDA inspection. The company has ceased production as they and the FDA continue to investigate the source and extent of the contamination.

 No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with the recall1.Consumers who have purchased any of the recalled products are advised to return them to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers can also contact Sharon Tomaselli of Cooperstown Cheese Company at 978-257-4635 for more information.

This is not the first time that Cooperstown Cheese Company has faced a listeria scare. In 2017, the company recalled some batches of its roasted garlic cheddar cheese and Toma Celena cheese for the same reason. The company has been praised for its artisanal cheeses made from raw milk from local farms.

Listeria contamination is a serious food safety issue that can affect various types of foods, such as deli meats, hot dogs, smoked seafood, raw sprouts, melons, and soft cheeses. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 1,600 people get sick from listeria each year in the US, and about 260 of them die.

The CDC recommends that consumers avoid eating foods that are likely to be contaminated with listeria, especially if they belong to high-risk groups. Consumers should also wash their hands and utensils before and after handling food, cook food thoroughly, refrigerate leftovers promptly, and keep their refrigerators clean.

Cheese is a delicious and nutritious food that many people enjoy. However, it is important to be aware of the potential risks of listeria contamination and take precautions to prevent it. By following the FDA’s recall notices and the CDC’s food safety tips, you can enjoy cheese without worrying about getting sick.

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