Friday, October 14, 2016

Michigan Cheese Company Recalls Cheese Due to Supplier Listeria Issues

 A Michigan company, Kuster's is recalling its institutional sized shredded, sliced and cubed cheese after the company was notified by their supplier, Farm Country Cheese, that there is the potential for Listeria contamination.
Farm County Cheese is no large industrial processor, quite the opposite.  From the Farm County Cheese website:
Tradition ~ Heritage ~ Community

For over 25 years, Farm Country Cheese House has worked in partnership with our local Amish community to create fresh, antibiotic-free, artisanal cheeses. Located in Lakeview, Michigan (northeast of Grand Rapids), we are proud of the “family” of Amish farmers and workers who make up the majority of our staff. Our culture is supportive and kind, and we work together to bring the highest-quality and freshest cheese to you, our consumer.

Our cheeses are pure, simple, and clean. We use milk made by cows on our local Amish dairy farms, and follow Amish traditions and practices. Because the health and comfort of the cows is a top priority, the small dairy farms that we work with raise herds of only 4 to 20 cows, where each cow is hand-milked twice daily. In the operation of our equipment and business, we use minimal amounts of electricity, which is supplied to us by an electric cooperative.
Sounds great, but if this is your supplier, are they controlling for Listeria?  How about a FSMA required Supplier Preventive Control.
FDA Recall Notice
Kuster's, Inc. Voluntarily Recalls Product Because Of Possible Health Risk
For Immediate Release
October 12, 2016
ConsumersCustomer Service 517-368-5174
Camden, MI - Kuster's, Inc. of is voluntarily recalling 14,238 pounds of its shredded, sliced and cubed cheese out of an abundance of caution. Kuster's, Inc., was notified by its supplier, Farm Country Cheese, Lakeview, MI, that the cheese has the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women. Kuster's, Inc. is complying with this recall and recalling any product that may have been processed on its manufacturing equipment after the cheese in question was processed.
The shredded cheese was distributed in Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Products included in this voluntary recall are: sharp white cheddar, mozzarella/muenster/provolone, Monterey Jack, pepper jack,four blend, three blend; pepper jack cubes; and co/jack slices.Product dates can be found in the bottom center of the label.
The shredded cheese was sold in 5 pound plastic bags under the Kuster's Dairy Foods, Fata's Best and Nor-Tech Dairy labels.Shredded cheese was packaged under the following labels:
  • Kuster's Dairy Foods Three Blend (pack date 10/05/16)
  • Fata's Best Four Blend Feather Shred (lot date 27916)
  • Fata's Best Mozzarella Muenster Provolone Feather Shred (lot date 27916)
  • Fata's Best Monterey Jack Feather Shred (lot date 27916)
  • Fata's Best PepperJack Feather Shred (Lot date 27816)
  • Nor-Tech Dairy Mozz/Muenster/Prov Feather Shred (best used by: 12-05-2016)
  • Nor-Tech Dairy Sharp White Cheddar Feather Shred (packed on 10.04.2016)
The cubed cheese was packaged under the following label:
  • Nor-Tech Dairy PepperJack 3/4" Cubed (packed on 10/04/2016).
The sliced cheese was packaged under the following label:
  • Kuster's Dairy Foods Sliced Colby Jack
No illnesses have been reported to date.
The recall was the result of confirmation from the cheese manufacturer of a possible contamination of the product received. Kuster's, Inc. has ceased production and distribution of the product as the FDA and the company continue their investigations.
Consumers who have purchased any of these products are urged not to consume the product and to return it to Kuster's, Inc. for a full refund. Customers with questions may contact the company at 517-368-5174 from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. EST.

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