E. coli outbreak linked to raw cheese: Here’s what you need to know

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a recall and safety alert on the Raw Farm brand of raw cheddar cheese after several illnesses, including four hospitalizations from the product.

The notice, posted Friday, said the illnesses were reported in Colorado, Utah, California and Texas. The company Raw Farm agreed to recall the products and is currently working with the Food and Drug Administration. 

The recall includes the original and jalapeno flavors of Raw Farm’s cheddar cheese and includes all sizes of blocks and shredded packages. The product is sold nationwide. 

Raw Farm recalls raw cheese

The CDC warns consumers not to eat any Raw Farm brand raw cheddar cheese and to throw it away or return the product to where they bought it. They said it’s also important to wash items and surfaces that may have touched the contaminated cheese using hot soapy water or a dishwasher. 


Raw Farm raw cheddar cheese (Credit: https://www.cdc.gov/ecoli/raw-milk-cheese-2-24/index.html)

According to the CDC, people should call their healthcare provider if they have any severe E. coli symptoms including diarrhea and a fever higher than 102°F, diarrhea for more than three days that is not improving, bloody diarrhea, so much vomiting without being able to keep liquids down, signs of dehydration, feeling tired, losing pink color in cheeks and inside the lower eyelids.

E. Coli symptoms

Most people infected with Shiga toxin-producing E. coli experience severe stomach cramps, diarrhea (often bloody), and vomiting, the CDC notes.


File: Cheddar cheese (Credit: Carlos Chavez/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

Symptoms usually start 3 to 4 days after swallowing the bacteria, but most people recover without treatment after 5 to 7 days.

RELATED: Recalled cheese over listeria concerns expands: See the full list

Some people may develop serious kidney problems and would need to be hospitalized.

Earlier this month, Rizo-Lopez Foods of Modesto, California, recalled dozens of dairy products linked to the listeria outbreak.  

On Feb. 6, the company recalled over 60 soft cheeses, yogurt, and sour cream sold under the brands Tio Francisco, Don Francisco, Rizo Bros, Rio Grande, Food City, El Huache, La Ordena, San Carlos, Campesino, Santa Maria, Dos Ranchitos, Casa Cardenas, and 365 Whole Foods Market.