Listeria outbreak linked to cheese kills 1, sickens 7

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A listeria outbreak linked to cheese has killed one person in California and sickened seven in Maryland, including three newborns.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday that the outbreak is linked to semi-soft, Latino-style cheese called Caujada en Terron that is sold from a chain of grocery stores in Maryland.

The cheese was made by Roos Foods of Kenton, Del. The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene issued a warning Wednesday to avoid products made by Roos Foods, which also sells cheese under the brand names Santa Rosa de Lima, Amigo, Mexicana, Suyapa, La Chapina, and La Purisima Crema Nica.


The CDC did not name the grocery chain linked to the outbreak.

The illnesses were diagnosed between Aug. 1 and Nov. 27 of last year. Seven of the eight were hospitalized. Five of the illnesses were related to a pregnancy.

Listeria is an infection caused by eating food contaminated with the bacterium listeria monocytogenes. Symptoms include fever and muscle aches and diarrhea. Seniors, pregnant women and newborns are particularly vulnerable to the illness.

Thirty-three people died in 2011 after consuming cantaloupe contaminated with listeria.