Raw food fans tout the benefits of unpasteurized dairy products, including improved skin tone, fewer allergies, and weight loss. But this week, go for the pasteurized cheese, or at least avoid Maytag brand Raw Milk Blue Cheese, sold at Whole Foods Markets around the nation.
The cheese is being recalled for possible Listeria bacteria contamination. The Food and Drug Administration, however, has reported no illnesses in connection with this recall, according to NBC News.
There are three cheeses being recalled, all produced by Maytag and sold under the names "Maytag Blue Raw Milk," :Maytag Blue" or "Maytag Iowa Blue Cheese." The products being recalled are sold cut and pre-packaged in clear plastic wrap with scale labels.
The affected products are sold in Whole Foods supermarkets' cheese cases across the country and are being pulled out of an abundance of caution. Maytag Dairy Farms suspended production and distribution of the cheese while it works with the FDA and Iowa officials to determine what went wrong.
According to the FDA, the possibility of Listeria contamination was discovered when State of Iowa health officials tested the cheese and found Listeria monocytogenes in two lots of the product. Customers who have purchased the raw milk blue cheese should not eat it, but discard it, and bring a receipt into Whole Foods for a full refund. Affected lots have PLU numbers beginning with 293308 and "sell-by" dates of 1/20/2016 and 3/21/16.
What Listeria Does
People with weakened immune systems have much more difficulty with food poisoning than healthy adults. Listeria contamination is particularly dangerous to the very young and old, as well as the ill, and it does sometimes kill people. Pregnant women should be especially wary as well, as infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirth.
But for the average, healthy adult, a case of contamination will probably only result in some short-term discomfort. Symptoms include fevers, headaches, stomachaches, and diarrhea.