It seems that Blue Bell has to issue another recall due to listeria-contaminated ice cream. The company will recall every flavour containing cookie dough, an ingredient that has been the cause of other recalls before.
Health officials have found that the cookie dough produced by Aspen Hills was most likely contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. It is worth mentioning that this ingredient also caused the September recall of two flavors of the Blue Bell ice cream.
Blue Bell has announced yesterday that the recall had to expand from the Cookie Two Step and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough to all flavors produced between the 2nd of February and 7th of September.
It means that this recall will most likely be the largest in the company’s history. The 3-gallon containers carried Krazy Kookie Dough, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, and Blue Monster, so customers are strongly recommended to discard any Blue Bell product they previously purchased.
The Aspen Hills recall included any ice cream produced between July 15 and September 30 and distributed in 15 states, including Texas. According to Blue Bell officials, the lab results proved that every product was Listeria negative.
On the other hand, the company underlines that the contamination might have been caused by the employees, who didn’t follow the Blue Bell food-safety policy by wearing uniforms, thus leading to the cross-contamination possibility.
According to the experts from the Department of State Health Services, the samples from the Brenham plants and Aspen Hills showed that Listeria monocytogenes contaminated the cookie dough ice cream packages which were not opened.
The common symptoms caused by Listeria are nausea, diarrhea, headaches, and fever. However, seniors, pregnant women, people with weak immune systems, and children are more vulnerable to this food-borne illness, so they might suffer severe consequence in case of an infection.
During the last year’s recall, ten people have become sick due to the Listeria contamination, while three of them died. It is true that this recall will affect the company’s future marketing strategies, as most customers will certainly avoid Blue Bell ice cream from now on.
The company and health officials will continue the investigation to solve this issue and prevent any future contamination. Fortunately, no cases have been reported yet, and hopefully, there will be none until the end of the Blue Bell recall.
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