Forever Cheese Inc. is notifying consumers of their expanded recall of all Marte brand Ricotta Salata Frescolina cheese, originally announced on September 14, 2012 due to possible Listeria Monocytogenes contamination. Listeria Monocytogenes is an organism which 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.
The cheese was sold to distributors for retailers and restaurants in AL, CA, CO, CT, D.C., FL, GA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MN, MT, NC, NE, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OR, PA, TX, UT, VA, WA between September 1, 2011 and August 31, 2012. Products were sold to supermarkets, restaurants and wholesale distributors.
The cheese in question is Marte brand Frescolina Ricotta Salata, which is a product of Italy. The expanded recall, announced on September 14, 2012, includes ALL lots and ALL production codes. The following lots/production codes may be found on the original wheel. T5086/440220, T5520/440315, T6048/440417, T6528/440519, T7012/440703, T7452/440601, T7939/440822, T8419/441003, T8899/441020, T9425/441202, T9962/441227, U1392/450126
Consumers may wish to follow up at the place they purchased the ricotta salata to ensure when it was cut or repacked that it was not relabeled. If the product was relabeled, consumers may not be able to determine if the cheese is Marte brand Ricotta Salata Frescolina.
There is an outbreak of 15 reported illnesses in 12 states which has been linked to this particular cheese.