Consumers, restaurants, and retailers should not eat, sell or serve any recalled Queso Fresco, Quesillo (Oaxaca, string cheese), or Requeson (ricotta) cheeses that were distributed in 26 states and have been linked to a listeria outbreak, U.S. health officials said Tuesday.
The recall was first announced Feb. 19, but on Tuesday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said the cheeses had been distributed to at least 26 states. To find out if your state is affected, check here.
The recalled brands by cheese type include:
- Queso Fresco: El Abuelito, Rio Grande, Rio Lindo
- Quesillo: El Abuelito, El Viejito, El Paisano, El Sabrosito, La Cima, Quesos Finos, San Carlos, Ideal Brands
- Requeson: El Abuelito, El Viejito
Some of the recalled cheeses were sold in bulk and may have been repackaged by retailers. Ask your retailer if any Queso Fresco or Quesillo cheese you buy was repackaged from the cheeses recalled by El Abuelito. If you can't get an answer, don't buy it and throw away potentially recalled cheese you have at home, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration advised.
If you had any of the recalled cheeses at home, be especially vigilant about cleaning and sanitizing any surface that may have come in contact with the products, because listeria can survive in refrigerated temperatures and can easily spread to other foods and surfaces, according to the FDA.
People at higher risk for severe listeria infection include those 65 and older, those with a weakened immune system due to certain medical conditions or treatments, and pregnant women. Listeria infection can cause miscarriage.