Cheesemakers, distributors on high alert after raw cheeses recalled for Listeria

WALTON, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The Food and Drug Administration continues to investigate a multistate outbreak of Listeriosis.

The outbreak has been linked to soft, raw milk cheese made by Vulto Creamery in Walton, N.Y. The products were sold in at least 14 New York stores, including at the Cheese Traveler in Albany.

Though the Cheese Traveler has carried Vulto products, it hasn’t sold any on the recall list in about a year. But the outbreak has opened a discussion on how it could have happened.

Behind the scenes of the Cheese Traveler, owner Eric Paul is working double time concerned about the outbreak.

“Everybody in the cheese community is really working hard and is upset about what is going on,” he said.

Six people have become sick and two people have died from Listeria in Vermont and Connecticut.

“I’d say it’s been a year since we’ve had some of his soft cheeses,” Paul said.

But it was still a shock. Paul has known Jos Vulto, Vulto Creamery cheesemaker, for a few years. He’s said to be somewhat of a legend.

“It’s very unfortunate with the people who’ve gotten sick and the fatalities,” Paul said. “And also Jos, who’s given the better part of the last 10 to 15 years, trying to do this and do it right. Unfortunately, something happened, and we don’t really know what.”

But it’s something they’re not taking lightly. Cheesemakers, distributors and other shop owners are on high alert.

“We’re all working together to make sure that we can handle a situation like this when it unfortunately happens,” Paul said.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said symptoms for the disease can include fever and muscle aches.

The exact cheeses included in the recall are Ouleout, Miranda, Heinennellie, and Willowemoc soft wash-rind raw milk cheese.

Read the full recall report

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