As part of an ongoing investigation, testing of cheese products by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) is presumptively positive for Listeria bacteria. The products were made by Roos Foods of Kenton, Delaware. While confirmatory testing is underway, DHMH advises consumers not to eat any cheese products made by Roos Foods, or foods that have been made with these cheeses. Roos Foods include the following brands: Santa Rosa de Lima, Amigo, Mexicana, Suyapa, La Chapina, and La Purisima Crema Nica.
Listeria bacteria can cause a serious infection called listeriosis. Listeriosis is caused by eating food contaminated with Listeria bacteria, and typically occurs within 3 days to 10 weeks (usually within 3 weeks). Symptoms of listeriosis include fever, muscle aches, headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, and convulsions which can be preceded by nausea or diarrhea. Listeria infection can be treated with antibiotics. Listeriosis in pregnant women may cause fever and other flu-like symptoms which can be mild. However, because Listeria infection can cause premature labor, premature delivery, miscarriage, stillbirth, or severe infection of newborns, it is especially important that pregnant women avoid these products.
Other persons at higher risk for disease include:
· Elderly persons
· Individuals with a weakened immune system (for example: persons with AIDS, cancer, diabetes, or kidney disease)
If a person has any of the above symptoms and has consumed cheese from Roos Foods, they should consult their healthcare provider.