According to CNN News, Blue Bell has voluntarily recalled all of its products because of Listeria concerns. During the last several weeks, Blue Bell has been recalling different products from store shelves because of the possibility of Listeria monocytogenes.
The recall includes the total stock of ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet, and frozen snacks no matter what size container or flavor.
The decision was made after the latest findings of Listeria in half gallons of Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream purchased on March 17 and March 27.
Blue Bell has had several positive tests for the bacteria from different places where Blue Bell is sold. There have been documented cases of Listeria in Kansas and Texas. Three people in Kansas have died from Listeria over the past year from an outbreak that may have been linked to Blue Bell products.
Five people in Kansas became ill when they were treated at a Kansas hospital for unrelated illnesses. It was discovered that most of the patients had consumed Blue Bell ice cream at the hospital. That’s when Blue Bell recalled 3-ounce cups of chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry ice cream after a test found Listeria in one of the cups from the Kansas hospital.
Even though Blue Bell is losing money, the company might also lose its reputation. Some Blue Bell customers might not ever purchase the products again after the recall is over. Even so, Blue Bell CEO and president Paul Kruse believes the total recall is the right thing to do. The Texas-based company made a statement about its recall.
“We’re committed to doing the 100 percent right thing, and the best way to do that is to take all of our products off the market until we can be confident that they are all safe. We are heartbroken about this situation and apologize to all of our loyal Blue Bell fans and customers.”
The FDA indicates that Listeria can sometimes cause fatal infections in young children, elderly people, and those with weakened immune systems. Some of the symptoms include high fever, severe headache, nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea. Listeria is very dangerous to pregnant women because it can cause miscarriages and stillbirths.
About 1,600 people become seriously ill because of Listeria each year. About 16 percent of those people die.
USA Today listed all the states where Blue Bell is sold. Blue Bell said supermarkets in Texas, Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Wyoming and international locations have all been instructed to stop selling the products. Customers have been warned not to consume any ice cream they have on hand. They are instructed to return it to the store where they bought it for a full refund.
No one knows officially when Blue Bell products will be back on store shelves. Consumers with questions are told to call Blue Bell at 866-608-3940 weekdays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. or Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
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