Blue Bell Ice Cream Locates Areas Suspected Of Containing Listeria At Its Plant — Another Recall Coming?

Blue Bell Ice Cream has reportedly identified locations where listeria may be present at the company’s facility. Listeria is the same reason that production and distribution of its ice cream were stopped in 25 states back in April, and it only recently just started back up in some of them.

As of now, the Texas-based Blue Bell Creameries has said that there are no intentions of stopping production or distribution or having a recall of any kind.

Although locations suspected of containing listeria were found, a statement released on Thursday let everyone know that none of its products have tested positive for the infection in any way.

Blue Bell ice cream delivery production listeria
Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

The statement goes on to explain how no company or person can expect listeria to be completely eliminated, and they need to constantly work at making sure it does not show again.

“Because Listeria is commonly found in the natural environment, no manufacturer can ever assume it can be entirely eradicated. We have worked closely with our expert team of microbiologists to develop an enhanced, robust testing system specifically designed for each facility to identify any possible presence of Listeria in the production environment, including extensive environmental testing and testing every single batch of ice cream we make before it is sold to customers.”

Wide Open Country reports that Blue Bell locating areas that were suspected of containing listeria arrives as the company is getting ready to bring back its products to numerous other states as of January 18. It’s already arrived back in numerous states, but these are those next on the list.

  • Virginia
  • North Carolina
  • South Carolina
  • Kentucky
  • Tennessee – eastern region
  • Alabama – northern region
  • Georgia – northern region

Blue Bell did not say that they are planning on stopping any of those re-introductions at this time and are going through with them as originally planned. Due to no products testing positive for listeria, the company doesn’t believe it is necessary to interrupt production or distribution again.

Due to listeria being a bacteria that is normally and commonly found in the natural environment, they believe it isn’t possible to ever eliminate entirely. This means that they will always assume listeria may or could be in its factories.

That’s where the new testing procedures come into play, as Blue Bell will make sure that each and every product they send out is safe.

blue bell ice cream factory plant listeria
Photo by: Jeff Greenberg/UIG via Getty Images

It was back in the spring of 2014 that there were 10 reported cases of listeria across four states, and they were all linked to Blue Bell frozen products. Three of those that were sickened by the listeria bacteria, who were all hospital patients in Kansas, ended up passing away.

This is when the company ended up recalling its products, stopping production, and ceasing distribution in plants located in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma; Brenham, Texas; and Sylacauga, Alabama. Thorough investigations and changes were made in all three plants, and it led to hundreds of furloughed employees being let go by Blue Bell.

The listeria bacteria is indeed something that is difficult to get rid of after it has contaminated an area or location, and it can be deadly for humans. Blue Bell Ice Cream is of the belief that this latest finding is totally under control and they are simply keeping their consumers in the loop without a recall being put into place.

[Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images]