Brie & Camembert Cheeses Recalled Nationwide Due to Potential Link to Listeria
On September 30, 2022, the company Old Europe Cheese, Inc. announced a voluntary recall of its Brie and Camembert cheese products due to possible contamination with Listeria. The Food and Drug Administration has since reposted the announcement and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a food safety alert. According to the FDA, an outbreak investigation into the matter is ongoing.
As of the announcement, six illnesses and five hospitalizations across six states (California, Texas, Michigan, Georgia, New Jersey and Massachusetts) have been reported. The bacteria Listeria monocytogenes causes listeriosis, an infection that may cause diarrhea and fever from which most infected people will recover without treatment. In severe cases, the infected person may develop sepsis, meningitis or encephalitis, but these cases are extremely rare. People at the highest risk for severe illness are pregnant people and their newborns, adults 65 and older, and people with weakened immune symptoms.
In severe cases, "People who are not pregnant may experience headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, and convulsions, in addition to fever and muscle aches. Pregnant people usually experience only fever, fatigue, and muscle aches. However, Listeria can cause pregnancy loss or premature birth. It can also cause serious illness or death in newborns," according to the CDC.
The recall is for at least 93 Brie and Camembert cheese products packaged by many different brands and sold in several stores in the U.S. and Mexico including Albertsons, Safeway, Meijer, Harding's, Shaw's, Price Chopper, Market Basket, Raley's, Save Mart, Giant Food, Stop & Shop, Fresh Thyme, Lidl, Sprouts, Athenian Foods and Whole Foods. A list of the recalled products and the stores where they are sold is available (with brand photos) from the FDA.
The products subject to the recall are marked with "Best By" dates ranging from September 28, 2022 to December 14, 2022. If you have any of these products in your kitchen, the CDC says to throw it away, and "clean your refrigerator, containers and surfaces that may have touched the recalled cheese. Listeria can survive in the refrigerator and can easily spread to other foods and surfaces."
If you've eaten any of the recalled cheese or exhibit any symptoms of severe listeriosis, call your healthcare provider right away.
For questions about the recall, call Old Europe Cheese at 269-925-5003 ext. 335. The line has been set up specifically to address this recall and is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. ET.