Brie and Camembert cheeses sold nationwide in the U.S. and in Mexico were recalled after they were linked to a listeria outbreak that led to six cases of the bacterial infection from 2017 to 2022, according to a news release.
Old Europe Cheese issued a voluntary recall on Friday for brie and Camembert cheeses distributed from Aug. 1 through Sept. 28 with best by dates through Dec. 14 after it conducted a full environmental audit of 120 samples, both of its products and facilities, and found that one of the facilities’ samples tested positive for listeria, according to the news release.
Listeria infection can cause severe illness when bacteria spreads from the gut to other parts of the body, especially in newborns, those who are 65 and older, pregnant or immunocompromised, according to a food safety alert issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The infection can produce mild food poisoning symptoms, but in severe cases result in pregnancy loss, premature birth and death in newborns.
The products that were recalled were sold under 25 different brand names, including Black Bear and Trader Joe, and in such stores as Whole Foods, Stop & Shop and Lidl, among many more, according to the CDC.
The CDC is now recommending for anyone who bought the products to throw them away and clean any surfaces the cheese may have touched. Listeria can survive in the refrigerator and spread to other foods and surfaces, the CDC says.
Old Europe Cheese, based in Michigan, has stopped producing the brie and Camembert products until further notice, and is working with state and federal authorities to make the recall a fast and efficient process.
“The source of potential contamination has been identified and Old Europe Cheese is taking active measures to eliminate it,” the company said in a statement. “We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience caused by this situation.”
Requests for comment from Old Europe Cheese were not immediately answered.
Old Europe Cheese has set up a telephone line to answer any questions about the recall. The number is 269-925-5003 ext. 335 and is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. ET.
Mirna Alsharif is a breaking news reporter for NBC News.