Lawsuit Filed Over Death Linked to Raw Milk Cheese

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The cheeses had been distributed nationwide, with most selling in the Northeastern and mid-Atlantic states; California; Chicago; Portland, Oregon; and the District of Columbia. If you purchased these cheeses from these stores, do not eat them.

Symptoms appear a few days or up to a few weeks after eating the contaminated food. None of the cheeses now linked to the outbreak were sold at Whole Foods, and the grocery chain hasn't received any reports of illness from customers who purchased the raw cheese from its stores.

According to the CDC, outbreaks of listeria in the 1990s were primarily linked to deli meats and hot dogs. The particular strain of Listeria monocytogenes found in the New York Department of Agriculture and Markets was found to be similar to the strain isolated from a cluster outbreak of Listeriosis responsible for illnesses.

The FDA is still investigating this listeria outbreak. People that don't have any medical problems usually have less severe symptoms that don't last long. If the mother is infected by listeria the babies can die at birth. Other recent outbreaks were tied to soft cheeses, celery, sprouts, cantaloupe and ice cream.

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Richard Friedman, who died November 2, is one of six people to be sickened by Vulto Creamery cheese contaminated by Listeria, and one of two people to die.

The Vulto Creamery investigation, which began January 31, is ongoing. After the FDA made tests and discovered the bacteria in these products, Vuto Creamery announced its recall.

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration says consumers should return the cheese to their retailer for a refund.

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