Big Olaf ice cream has been linked to a deadly Listeria outbreak but the company hasn’t issued a recall, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The ice cream is only sold in Florida at Big Olaf locations and at other ice cream shops listed below.
The Listeria outbreak has sickened 23 people. One person has died and one pregnant woman suffered a fetal loss. All but three of the people sickened in this outbreak either live in or visited Florida prior to developing symptoms of listeriosis. Health officials have information about 22 of the patients. All of them required hospitalization.
Whole genome sequencing performed on the Listeria strains culture from patients shows a close genetic relationship. This means the people sickened likely ate the same food.
Health officials have interviewed 17 outbreak patients about the foods they ate in the month before they developed Listeria symptoms. Fourteen said they had eaten ice cream. Six specifically remembered eating Big Olaf ice cream or eating ice cream at locations that serve Big Olaf.
When told about its epidemiological ties to the deadly Listeria outbreak, the company chose not to issue a recall but said it would advise retailers not to sell the ice cream. Later, the company released a statement saying anything tying Big Olaf ice cream to the Listeria outbreak is “speculation” and that “nothing has been proven.”
Neither the CDC nor the company mentioned specific flavors that might be implicated. But the CDC is advising that anyone who purchased this ice cream and has it at home in their freezers not to eat it.
Symptoms of a Listeria infection, which can take as long as 70 days to develop, include high fever, severe headache, stiff neck, other muscle stiffness, confusion, loss of balance, and convulsions. Among pregnant women, Listeria can cause miscarriage and stillbirth.
Where is Big Olaf Ice Cream Sold?
Here is where Big Olaf ice cream is sold, according to the company’s website:
Big Olaf has stores in Sarasota, Lakewood Ranch, Venice, Clearwater Beach, Treasure Island, and St. Pete Beach. Big Olaf ice cream is also sold at :
- Beverly’s Ice Cream, Clearwater Beach
- Super Scoops, Treasure Island
- Sprinkles Ice Cream Shop and Retro Candy
- Sundial Beach Resort and Spa, Sanibel Island
- Good Ole Days, Punta Gorda
- Twistee Treat, North Ft. Meyers
- Tedi’s Olde Tyme Ice Cream, St. Augustine
- Fantastic Fudge, Fernandina Beach
- The Ice Cream Shop, Lehigh Acres
Experienced Listeria Lawyers
If you developed a Listeria infection after eating Big Olaf ice cream and would like to discuss your legal options, please contact our Listeria lawyers. Our Food Safety Team has more experience handling Listeria lawsuits than any other law firm in the country securing some of the largest Listeria settlements in U.S. history including a recent award of $6.4 million.