15 different styles of cheese sold in 5 states have been recalled due to the risk of Salmonella contamination.
Chapel Hill Creamery in Chapel Hill, NC, has announced a voluntary recall of all Chapel Hill Creamery cheese products because of a potential association with an outbreak of Salmonella infections.
Salmonella is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, diabetics and others with weakened immune systems.
Health officials have identified recent cases of Salmonella infection in persons who consumed Chapel Hill Creamery products.
A matching strain of Salmonella has been identified in the milk from the creamery that was used during preparation of the cheese products.
The products involved in the voluntary recall include all codes, packages and sizes of the following varieties of cheese manufactured by Chapel Hill Creamery and distributed through retail locations, Farmer’s Markets or restaurants throughout North Carolina, Tennessee, South Carolina, Virginia and Georgia.
- Hot Farmers Cheese
- New Moon
- Smoked Mozzarella
- Fresh Mozzarella
- Hickory Grove
- Carolina Moon
- Smoked Farmers Cheese
- Dairyland Farmers Cheese
Portia McKnight, co-founder of the Creamery, said “Although there is not yet a definitive link between the CHC cheese and the illnesses, there is enough evidence to implicate the cheese and we are asking customers to not consume these cheeses or use them in food service.”
Chapel Hill Creamery has requested wholesale customers to remove any CHC cheese from their shelves and dispose of it.
Consumers who have this product in their home should not consume it and should dispose of it.
Customers are reminded to thoroughly wash their hands and any utensils or equipment that may have contacted the cheese in warm, soapy water.
“Our customers are our top priority,” McKnight said. “If there is any potential of risk, we take that very seriously and are committed to addressing it fully.”
Chapel Hill Creamery is working in cooperation with the North Carolina Department of Agriculture, North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the Orange County Health Department to identify the source of the Salmonella and which cheeses are affected.
“The Chapel Hill Creamery has been an integral part of our local community for many years. They have consistently adhered to and exceeded safety measures and it is this adherence that allowed us to identify the issue so quickly. Since identification they have gone above and beyond to protect the health and safety of their customers.” Dr. Colleen Bridger, Orange County Health Director.
The Creamery will provide updated information on its web site (chapelhillcreamery.com) as it becomes available.
Most persons infected with Salmonella experience fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. People who are concerned they might have Salmonella infections should contact their doctor to discuss testing and treatment. The illness typically lasts four to seven days, and most persons recover without treatment. However, in some persons, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized.
Orange County has provided a hot line (919) 245-2378 for any questions.