In 2019, the FDA deemed Listeria a “resident pathogen” at its facility in Utica, OH, now Velvet Ice Cream is recalling all products made there since March 24, 2021, for Listeria risk. The Velvet Ice Cream Listeria recall includes dozens of ice cream, sherbet, and frozen novelty products. The brand names of the recalled products are Buehler’s, Discount Drug Mart, Super Dip, Ruggle’s, Velvet, Whale of a Pail, and North Star Frog Spit.
At the time of the recall, the company stated that it was unaware of any illnesses associated with the products. But consumers who have purchased these products should not eat them as Listeria can cause serious illness and death. For pregnant women, Listeria can cause miscarriage and stillbirth.
Velvet Ice Cream Listeria Recall
You can see the long list of products included in the Velvet Ice Cream Listeria recall here. They were shipped to retailers in Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia including drug stores, convenience stores and supermarkets. All sizes and containers are included in the recall.
Symptoms of a Listeria infection, called listeriosis, usually develop within two weeks of eating contaminated food, but sometimes it can take as long as 70 days. These symptoms include high fever, stiff neck, other muscle stiffness, nausea, diarrhea and abdominal cramps. Consumers who have eaten the recalled products should monitor themselves for symptoms and see a doctor right away if they develop. Even if they only experience mild symptoms from the infection, pregnant women can suffer miscarriage or stillbirth.
FDA Deemed Listeria a “Resident Pathogen” at Velvet Ice Cream
Although it is a bacteria found in nature, Listeria monocytogenes grows best in cool, damp environments. It can survive freezing temperatures and thrives in conditions that slow the growth of other bacteria. These known risks are the reason that food manufacturers must have specific plans to test for, and prevent the growth of, Listeria. For Velvet Ice Cream, this has been a challenge.
In early 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspected Velvet Ice Cream’s facility. The agency found serious food safety violations and told the company to address them. But on a follow-up visit, the problems had not been adequately addressed, and the FDA issued a warning letter.
For the third straight year, the agency found Listeria there. Tests on 21 environmental swabs collected during those inspections were positive for six different strains of Listeria. Genetic tests on those strains showed that the “fingerprint” of one of them found in 2018 matched one found in 2019. The presence of the same strain over multiple years “indicates that there has been a resident pathogen or harborage site in your facility since 2018,” the warning letter states. The fingerprint of that strain was also isolated from one Listeria patient in 2018 indicating it is capable of causing human illness, the letter states.
Experienced Listeria Lawyers
If you or a family member developed a Listeria infection after eating ice cream made Velvet and would like a free consultation with our experienced team, please contact us today by calling 1-888-377-8900, sending a text to 612-261-0856, or by completing the form below. There is no obligation and we don’t get paid unless we win.