The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a food safety alert for recalled cheeses, yogurts and sour creams potentially linked to an eleven state outbreak of listeria that has sickened 26, hospitalized 23 and left two people dead.
Rizo-López Foods issued a voluntary recall on Monday for all cheeses and other dairy products made in its Modesto, California facility, “because they have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogene.”
In a press release, the company said that the recalled products include cheese, yogurt, and sour cream.
The dairy products were sold under the brand names Tio Francisco, Don Francisco, Rizo Bros, Rio Grande, Food City, El Huache, La Ordena, San Carlos, Campesino, Santa Maria, Dos Ranchitos, Casa Cardenas, and 365 Whole Foods Market.
The CDC said that 26 people had been infected with the outbreak strain of listeria from eleven states.
The agency noted that 23 of those infected were hospitalized, and two people died in Texas and California.
The CDC noted that the “true number” of sick people from this listeria outbreak is “likely higher” because some people recover without medical care or are never tested.
The CDC said that they have been tracking this strain of listeria for years, prior to the Rizo-López Foods recall.
“CDC investigated this outbreak in 2017 and 2021. Epidemiologic evidence in previous investigations identified queso fresco and other similar cheeses as a potential source of the outbreak, but there was not enough information to identify a specific brand,” the CDC said. “CDC reopened the investigation in January 2024 after new illnesses were reported in December 2023 and the outbreak strain was found in a cheese sample from Rizo-López Foods.”
Symptoms of Listeria
Listeria, which can cause serious and even fatal infections in young children or people with weakened immune systems.
Among pregnant women, listeria can cause a miscarriage or stillbirth.
Pregnant women usually have a fever, muscle aches, and tiredness.
Symptoms usually start within 2 weeks after eating food contaminated with Listeria, but may start as early as the same day or as late as 10 weeks after, the CDC said.
The CDC said that people who are not pregnant usually have fever, muscle aches, and tiredness. They may also get a headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, or seizures.
The CDC urged shoppers who may have purchased the recalled products to throw them away or return them to the place of purchase.
“Do not eat any recalled cheeses or dairy products,” the CDC said.
Rizo-López Foods said in a press release that “consumers should check their refrigerators and freezers for any of the products listed and dispose of them.”
The company advised consumers to contact the company at (833)296-2233, which is monitored 24 hours a day.
Rizo-López Foods did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.