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Recalled El Abuelito Products due to Potential Listeria Contamination

This update to Thursday's press release specifies the names and sell by dates of recalled El Abuelito products.

The Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) is advising consumers that El Abuelito Cheese of Paterson, NJ is recalling all Queso Fresco (Fresh, soft cheese), Quesillo (Oaxaca, string cheese), and Requeson (Ricotta) products, because they have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.

As of February 27, 2021, CDC reports ten people infected with the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes from four states.

No cases of Listeria infection have been found in Rhode Island to date. However, recalled products have been identified at a distribution warehouse and retailers in Rhode Island.

All Queso Fresco products with sell by dates through March 28, 2021; all Quesillo (Oaxaca, string cheese) products with sell by dates through April 16, 2021; and all Requeson (Ricotta) products with sell by dates through March 14, 2021 have been recalled. The products are sold as El Abuelito Cheese brand, distributed in CT, NJ, PA, NY; Rio Grande Food Products brand, distributed in VA, NC, MD; Rio Lindo distributed in NC and MD and Viejito, El Paisano, El Sabrosito, La Cima, Quesos Finos, San Carlos, and Ideal Brands.

In addition, the following products are being recalled. These products were produced at Plant #34-12179 in the following forms. It is possible that retailers repackaged Quesillo into smaller containers and then sold this product to consumers. This repackaged product may not bear the original labeling and product information as described below.

El Abuelito Cheese: Quesillo Abuelito 12oz, vacuum pack, 673130200000 Quesillo Abuelito, 5lbs, vacuum bag, loose bag, 673130500001 Quesillo Abuelito, 10lbs, vacuum bag, loose bag, 673130600008 El Abuelito Requeson Ricotta, 12oz, clam shell container, 673130300014 El Abuelito Requeson Ricotta (promocion $3.99), 12oz, clam shell container, 673130300014

El Viejito Cheese: El Viejito Quesillo, 10lbs, vacuum bag, loose bag, 718122180950 El Viejito Requeson/Ricotta, 12oz, clam shell container, 718122180912

El Paisano Cheese: El Paisano Quesillo, 5lbs, vacuum bag, 799456415468 El Paisano Quesillo, 10lbs, vacuum bag, 799456415482

El Sabrosito Cheese: El Sabrosito Quesillo, 10lbs vacuum bag, 749390337586

La Sima Cheese: La Sima Quesillo, 5lbs, vacuum bag, 072632891653

Quesos Finos Cheese: Quesos Finos Quesillo, 5lbs, vacuum bag, 851800004145

San Carlos Cheese: San Carlos Quesillo, 14lbs, loose bag, 814920000039

Ideal Cheese: Ideal Quesillo, 5lbs, vacuum bag, 610563082674 Ideal Quesillo, 10lbs, vacuum bag, 897930001951

Listeria Monocytogenes is an organism that 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.

Call your healthcare provider if you have any symptoms (high fever, headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea) of infection with Listeria after eating Hispanic-style fresh and soft cheeses.

Consumers who have purchased the stated Queso Fresco, Quesillo (Oaxaca, string cheese), and Requeson (Ricotta) products are urged not to consume and to return product to the place of purchase for a full refund. FDA recommends that anyone who purchased or received any El Abuelito brand Quesillo, Requeson, or recalled Queso Fresco cheeses carefully clean and sanitize any surfaces and containers that may have come in contact with these products to reduce the risk of cross-contamination. Listeria can survive in refrigerated temperatures and can easily spread to other foods and surfaces. Consumers with questions may contact El Abuelito Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. EST at (973) 345-3503.