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2014 PRESS RELEASES

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February 24, 2014
ROOS FOODS VOLUNTARILY RECALLS VARIETY OF CHEESES DUE TO POSSIBLE HEALTH RISK

Contact: Elaine J. Lidholm, VDACS, 804.786.7686

On February 10, 2014, Listeria monocytogenes, a bacterium that can cause human illness, was isolated from a sample of Cuajada en Terron (fresh cheese curd) collected by Food Safety Specialists from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS).  The sample was collected at Mega Mart, a retail store located at 8328 Shopper’s Square, Manassas, Va. 20111. VDACS notified the public via a press release on February 15 after laboratory confirmation of Listeria contamination.

The Department collected additional samples which also tested positive for the presence of Listeria monocytogenes. On February 24, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a voluntary recall by Roos Foods of ALL LOTS of the following cheeses Mexicana: Cuajada En Terron, Cuajada/Cuajadita Cacera, Cuajada Fresca, Queso Fresca Round, Queso Dura Viejo Hard Cheeses; Amigo: Cuajada En Terron, Cuajada/Cuajadita Cacera, Cuajada Fresca, Queso Fresca Round, Queso Dura Viejo; Santa Rosa De Lima: Cuajada En Terron, Cuajada/Cuajadita Cacera, Cuajada Fresca, Queso Fresca Round, Queso Dura Viejo Hard Cheeses and Anita Queso Fresca. Products were distributed in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. through retail stores. The products are packaged in flexible plastic bags and rigid plastic clam shell packages in 12 oz. and 16 oz. sizes under the brand names: Mexicana, Amigo, Santa Rosa De Lima and Anita.

Listeria monocytogenes infection commonly can exhibit short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea when it affects healthy individuals. It may cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people and individuals with weakened immune systems. The organism is also a major concern for pregnant women because it can cause miscarriages, stillbirths and neonatal illness. Symptoms of Listeria infection generally appear about three weeks after exposure, but may appear as soon as three days or as long as 70 days after exposure. 

The company has ceased the production and distribution of the products as FDA and the company continue their investigation into the cause of the problem. To date, Virginia has no reported cases of listeriosis associated with this cheese. If a person has any of the above symptoms and has consumed cheese from Roos Foods, they should consult their healthcare provider. Customers should destroy all lots of the above listed products with the brand names Mexicana, Amigo, Santa Rosa De Lima and Anita. For any refund, please return products to store where purchased.

Related releases, VDACS
February 15 - Listeria Found in Cheese in Northern Virginia (Release in Spanish)
February 21 - Virginia Officials Warn Consumers Not to Eat Cheeses Made by Roos Foods Due to Possible Health Risk (Release in Spanish)

Related release, FDA
February 23 - Roos Foods Voluntarily Recalls Variety of Cheeses Due to Possible Health Risk

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