Collaborative investigation efforts of local, state, and federal public health and regulatory agencies indicate that imported ricotta salata cheese is the likely source of this outbreak. On September 10, 2012, Forever Cheese, Inc. recalled one lot of Frescolina brand ricotta salata cheese due to Listeria monocytogenes contamination.
As of September 11, 2012, a total of 14 persons infected with the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes have been reported from 11 states and the District of Columbia.
The cheese was sold to distributors for retailers and restaurants in California, Colorado, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Washington between June 20, 2012 and August 9, 2012.
The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: California (1), Colorado (1), District of Columbia (1), Maryland (3), Minnesota (1), Nebraska (1), New Jersey (1), New Mexico (1), New York (1), Ohio (1), Pennsylvania (1), and Virginia (1). All 14 ill persons have been hospitalized. Three deaths have been reported.