A Massachusetts company that makes low protein and medical specialty foods is recalling three types of its imitation cream cheese products because of possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination.
That organism can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, the frail or elderly, and those with weakened immune systems. It can also cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women, the company warned.
Cambrooke Foods — which discovered the Listeria contamination during routine testing — is recalling all batches of the following products:
• Cheddar Wizard Low Protein Imitation Cream Cheese (SKU 10310; 8 oz. jar);
• Herb & Garlic Low Protein Imitation Cream Cheese (SKU 10308; 8 oz. jar); and
• Plain Low Protein Imitation Cream Cheese (SKU 10306; 8 oz. jar).
The company is also doing a "market withdrawal" of one batch of its Low Protein Peanot Butter (SKU 10809; 16 oz. jar) because the products were made in the same plant — and on the same machinery — as the affected imitation cream cheese. The Peanot Butter, however, tested negative for Listeria contamination.
"We apologize for the inconvenience and concern that this recall has caused for you and your family and want you to know that your good health and the health of your family is our paramount concern," the company said in a statement on its Web site.
Cambrooke Foods said it discovered the contamination while testing a new batch of imitation cream cheese. This happened before those products were sent to customers, the company said. It has since destroyed all the tainted cream cheese.
Cambrooke Foods said it has not received any reports of illnesses linked to the tainted imitation cream cheese. The company, however, has suspended the manufacturing and distribution of these products pending an investigation.
Those infected with the Listeria organism may have such symptoms as fever, muscle aches, nausea or diarrhea, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If the infection spreads to the nervous system, symptoms such as headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, or convulsions may occur.
Cambrooke Foods said customers who purchased any of the recalled products since May 2008 should immediately dispose of them.
For more information, consumers can contact Cambrooke Foods at 866-456-9776, ext. 1015, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.