Cheese Sold At Costco Linked To E. Coli Outbreak

Costco might be a good place to stock up on eyeglasses, but the FDA says that the warehouse store has been selling and sampling some cheese that could make you sick.

According to the FDA, Bravo Farms Dutch Style Gouda cheese, (Costco item 40654), which was sold at and handed out as free samples at Costco stores in Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico and Nevada, has been preliminarily linked with an outbreak of E.coli O157:H7 infections.

From the FDA’s site:

As of Thursday, November 4, 2010, 25 persons infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7have been reported from five states since mid-October. The number of ill persons identified in each state with this strain is as follows: AZ (11), CA (1), CO (8), NM (3) and NV (2). There have been 9 reported hospitalizations, 1 possible case of hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), and no deaths.

The agency advises anyone who has Bravo Farms Dutch Style Gouda cheese that was purchased at Costco to return it to the place of purchase or dispose of it in a closed plastic bag and place in a sealed trash can to prevent people or animals, including wild animals, from eating them.

Symptoms of E. coli O157:H7 infection include diarrhea and abdominal cramps, but some illnesses may last longer and can be more severe. The FDA says that while most people recover within a week, some may develop a severe infection. Rarely, as symptoms of diarrhea improve, a type of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) can occur; this can happen at any age but is most common in children under 5 years old and in older adults. People with HUS should be hospitalized immediately, as their kidneys may stop working and they may be at risk for other serious health problems.

FDA, CDC, and Costco warn consumers to avoid Bravo Farms Dutch Style Gouda cheese [FDA.gov]

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  1. IT-Princess: I work in IT, you owe me $1 says:

    Mmmm bulk E Coli

  2. Macgyver says:

    “dispose of it in a closed plastic bag and place in a sealed trash can to prevent people or animals, including wild animals, from eating them.”
    What kind of people go eating of of the garbage?

    • Amy Alkon says:

      Noticed the economy lately?

    • Aennan says:

      Freegans (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freeganism). When I worked at a restaurant during high school, they would have to station someone at the dumpsters for about 3 hours after closing to keep people from taking the trash to eat (they had been sued, and lost, by someone who got sick after eating from the dumpster).

      • KyleOrton says:

        I have an embarrassing (and while not immediate, not distant enough) relative who does this. Gets bags of meatballs out of the Subway dumpster. She’s actually tried serving this without disclosure to family members.

    • qwickone says:

      There’s also a movement that encourages dumpster diving for food items still in good condition. I can’t recall the name of the movement, but it’s supposed to curb the waste of so much edible food and reduce your bills. It is a fringe movement, though, and I think they usually stick to grocery store dumpsters.

    • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

      I used to do that when I was in college.

      If you time it right, you can get a lot of just barely expired food when grocery stores and restaurants dump it in bulk in the dumpster. I never got sick but I was pretty careful to only take food that was in a sealed container.

    • OutPastPluto says:

      > What kind of people go eating of of the garbage?

      Possums like to knock over trashcans in some places and rummage through the garbage.

  3. jerrycomo says:

    Gotta be the 1st negative Costco article on here on Consum’.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      It’s not really negative – it’s not Costco’s fault that the manufacturer shipped contaminated gouda.

  4. flacoman954 says:

    That’s how speedy Gonzalez stays speedy!

  5. pbj_sushi says:

    I had e. coli this year – I’m 26 and it’s the only illness I’ve ever had that actually scared me. It was a week of hell. Do not want!

    On the other hand, I got phone calls from the health department (state (CT) and feds) and they were extremely interested in knowing about every possible thing I had eaten in the past week that might have given me the illness. They were very thorough and kind of impressive – they are very keen on watching for these outbreaks.

    • Arcaeris says:

      I also got E. Coli this year for the first time. 3 weeks of shitting and cramps nonstop. It was freaking horrible.

    • Happy Tinfoil Cat says:

      Let me guess, raw fish was involved?

      On the other hand, it’s a great weight loss system. Costco just needs to relabel as such and watch the sales go up.

  6. CBenji says:

    I think that we need to stop giving these cows corn to eat. If more cows were grass fed we wouldn’t have so many of these E Coli issues.

  7. Nakko says:

    I can’t tell you how much (because it’s a lot!) of the big block cheeses they have at my local CostCo have pierced seals, so that the bags or wrappers they are in to not be airtight anymore.

    It’s just disgraceful; and it’s a shame because I like pretty much everything else about the CostCo I shop at!

  8. JRam says:

    If only their was a process that could kill bacteria that was in milk that could harm you.

  9. bitplayer says:

    Costco has a good rep with these kinds of issues. They were the only people testing their hamburger meat for ecoli and the like. Look it up.

  10. james says:

    So, who cut the cheese?

  11. Daverson says:

    That stuff’s no gouda.