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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

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Recall -- Firm Press Release

 

FDA posts press releases and other notices of recalls and market withdrawals from the firms involved as a service to consumers, the media, and other interested parties. FDA does not endorse either the product or the company.

Queseria Bendita Recalls Queso Fresco, Panela, and Requeson Because of Possible Health Risk

 

Company Contact:
Queseria Bendita
512 S. 3rd St.
Yakima, WA 98901
Sandra Aguilar 509-574-8587

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - February 19, 2010 - Queseria Bendita of Yakima, Wash., is recalling three types of cheese, Queso Fresco, Panela, and Requeson, because they have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, an organism that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems.

Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.

The Queso Fresco, Panela, and Requeson cheeses are sold at Queseria Bendita’s retail store and were distributed in Washington and Oregon, where they are sold in Hispanic markets.

The Queso Fresco is packaged in one- and three-pound vacuum packed wheels; the Panela is vacuum packed in one- and three- pound sizes; and the Requeson is packed in eight-ounce and one- pound clear plastic tubs.

Each cheese has a green label identifying the type of cheese, the Queseria Bendita brand name, and a date code up to and including "Apr 30 2010".

To date there is one confirmed illness in Washington related to the recalled product. Other illnesses in Washington and Oregon may also be related.

The public health investigation of the illnesses led to sampling and testing of the cheeses. The testing revealed the contamination of the product with Listeria monocytogenes.

The company has ceased production and distribution of the product while the Washington State Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and the firm investigate the source of the problem.

Consumers who have purchased the product are urged to return it to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact the company at 1-509-574-8587 Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.

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