State warns of contaminated cheese

August 26, 2010 9:02pm

•  Listeria detected in Morningland brand raw milk cheese

•  Consumers urged to discard product immediately

The California Department of Food and Agriculture says it has detected Listeria monocytogenes bacteria in raw milk cheese produced in the state of Missouri and sold in California.

The cheese should be thrown away immediately, the department says. As of Thursday evening, no illnesses had been reported, the state says.

The bacteria was found in two cheese products labeled as Morningland Dairy Raw Milk Cheese Garlic Colby and Morningland Dairy Raw Milk Cheese Hot Pepper Colby, both manufactured at processing plant number 29-428 in Mountain View, Mo.

The products were shipped from the Missouri plant to locations in Mendocino, Santa Cruz, Los Angeles and San Diego counties.

Listeria monocytogenes may cause listeriosis among “at risk” people, including pregnant women, newborns, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems. Symptoms include fever, muscle aches, and sometimes nausea or diarrhea. If infection spreads to the nervous system, symptoms such as headache and stiff neck can occur.

Infected pregnant women may experience only mild, flu-like illness; however, infections during pregnancy can lead to more serious problems for the fetus.

Consumers should seek immediate medical care if they develop these symptoms.

Consumers should discard the cheese or return it to the place of purchase.

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