September 30, 2016

Consumer Alert: Staphylococcus Aureus in Quesito Colombiano Cheese/Colombian Cheese

Consumer Alert: Staphylococcus Aureus in Quesito Colombiano Cheese/Colombian Cheese

State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball today warned consumers not to consume TITAQuesito Colombiano Colombian Cheese made by Productos Tita Corp., 70-06 88th Street Glendale, NY 11385 due to Staphylococcus aureus contamination.  To date, no illnesses are known by the Department of Agriculture and Markets to be associated with this product. 

A routine sample of the cheese, collected by an inspector from the Department’s Division of Milk Control and Dairy Services on September 26, 2016, was subsequently tested by the New York State Food Laboratory and discovered to be contaminated with high levels of Staphylococcus aureus.  The manufacturer was notified of the positive test result and is voluntarily recalling the product.   

The recalled Colombian Cheese is sold in 8 oz. plastic tub packages with a label declaring a plant # 36-8440, and a product lot code of OCT 06 2016.  The manufacturer presented on the package is:  “Products TITA, Gabriel Gomez 70-06 88 Street, Glendale N.Y. 11385.”  The product was distributed to stores and delicatessens in the metropolitan New York area.

Staphylococcus aureus is a bacterium that usually causes food poisoning symptoms, including nausea, vomiting, retching, abdominal cramping, and prostration.  In more severe cases, headache, muscle cramping and transient changes in blood pressure and pulse may occur.  Recovery generally takes two days.  All people are susceptible.  Death is very rare however such cases have occurred among the elderly, infants, and severely debilitated persons.

Consumers who have purchased the TITA Quesito Colombiano Colombian Cheese should return the product to the place of purchase or discard it.