map-06-10-2015-fullBlue Bell is doing “what they always should have been doing and likely wish they had been doing,” Marler said. ” … If I had a dollar for every company that found religion after a self-imposed disaster, I could have retired years ago.”

The CDC reported this morning that the Blue Bell Outbreak and investigation is over. According to the CDC, this was a complex multistate outbreak investigation of listeriosis cases occurring over several years. Public health investigators used the PulseNet system to identify illnesses that were part of this outbreak. DNA “fingerprinting” is performed on Listeria bacteria isolated from ill people using techniques called pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and whole genome sequencing (WGS). WGS gives a more detailed DNA fingerprint than PFGE. PulseNet manages a national database of these DNA fingerprints to identify possible outbreaks of enteric illness. Several PFGE patterns (strains) of Listeria were involved in this outbreak.

A total of 10 people infected with several strains of Listeria were reported from 4 states: Arizona (1), Kansas (5), Oklahoma (1), and Texas (3). Illness onset dates ranged from January 2010 through January 2015. The people with illness onsets during 2010–2014 were identified through a retrospective review of the PulseNet database for DNA fingerprints matching isolates collected from Blue Bell ice cream samples. All 10 (100%) people were hospitalized. Three deaths were reported from Kansas.

The FDA also released all inspection reports and responses by Blue Bell.  It does not appear that the FDA or State investigators have released all product or environmental tests yet.