Jeni’s Ice Cream Recall Issued Over Listeria Risks

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream is temporarily shutting down production, while recalling any and all ice creams and frozen yogurt products currently on the market, since they may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogens, a bacteria that poses a risk of serious and sometimes fatal foodborne illness. 

The Jeni’s ice cream recall was announced on April 23, impacting frozen yogurts, sorbets, and ice cream sandwiches in all flavors and container sizes. The action was taken after random sample testing by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture identified bacteria in one of the company’s ice cream products that may pose a risk of listeria infection.

The recalled ice cream was manufactured by Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams located in Columbus, Ohio, where they were distributed for sale to 21 Jeni’s store location in Ohio, Tennessee, Georgia, South Carolina, and California as well as various grocery stores and retailers.

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While no reports of listeria food poisoning have been linked to the recalled ice cream, consuming food contaminated with the bacteria may pose a serious health risk, especially for children, the elderly, pregnant women or those with a weakened immune system.

John Lowe, CEO of the Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream, states that the company’s top priority is guaranteeing consumer safety and that they are recalling all products currently on the market due to the unknown root cause of infection.

Jeni’s announced an ongoing investigation into their production plant is being run by 10 top scientists from sanitation experts to dairy processing experts from third party labs in Columbus and Ohio. In addition, the FDA has provided more than four officials for the investigation as well as three more experts from the Ohio Department of Agriculture.

The company’s press release stated that the initial sampling of the Columbus, Ohio manufacturing plant where the infection is believed to have originated consisted of broad sampling of products and hundreds of swab samples taken from across the facility, including processing equipment, spatulas, floor mats, and drain pipes. The samples are being sent to a third party private lab in Columbus, Ohio for testing.

On April 28, Jeni’s, along with its hired and offered dairy processing experts, designed an extensive cleaning and eradication plan which is anticipated to start today and last a few days. The cleaning process will systemically clean and disinfect for Listeria from top to bottom according to the report. The plant anticipates reopening for production once the root cause of listeria infection is located and the cleaning and eradication process is complete.

Listeria may cause serious and sometimes fatal infection in carriers, with symptoms typically involving nausea, muscle ache, diarrhea, fever, and fatigue. In serious cases, individuals may suffer more life threatening infections if the bacteria moves through the bloodstream into the nervous system. For pregnant women, consuming listeria tainted products may pose a risk of miscarriages or still-births.

For now, all Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream products including all container sizes are being recalled. Customers with recalled products are encouraged to either throw the products out or return them to the store where they were purchased for an exchange or a full refund. Customers with additional questions may contact Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at 614-360-3905 or email them at recall@jenis.com.

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