The Nationwide Cheese Recall Was Just Expanded To Include Costco, Trader Joe’s, Albertson’s and Other Grocery Chains

Earlier this week, an outbreak was said to be responsible for a total of 26 illnesses and two deaths so far, with 11 states reporting cases from products under multiple brand names.

Earlier this week, we shared that if you’ve been gearing up for Super Bowl Sunday with a taco bar or nachos, you’ll want to check your groceries. On Monday, February 5, 2024, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sent out an alert announcing that several dairy products from the company Rizo Lopez Foods, Inc. may be responsible for a multi-state, multi-year outbreak of listeriosis involving several illnesses and two deaths. The message from the bureau is clear, as they state: “Do not eat, sell, or serve recalled brands of cheeses, sour creams (cremas), or yogurts manufactured by Rizo Lopez Foods, Inc.”

Later in the week, subsequent products were recalled as bolded in the list below.

The FDA reportedly linked this outbreak to one that started back in 2014 and was linked to “queso fresco and other similar cheeses as the potential source,” says the FDA, which adds that the concern resurfaced in 2017 and 2021 but subsequently was considered closed, as “there was not enough information to identify a specific brand.”

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However, in January of 2024, the Hawaii State Department of Health’s Food and Drug Branch tested a sample of Rizo Bros Aged Cotija that revealed the presence of Listeria monocytogenes. The FDA then tested products where Rizo Lopez Foods are manufactured and discovered more Listeria presence that tests revealed was the same type as that found in Hawaii and gene sequencing linked it to the previous outbreaks. The FDA, Centers for Disease Control (CDC), plus state and local health authorities are now involved in the larger ongoing investigation.

In response, Rizo Lopez Foods, Inc. is voluntarily recalling all of its dairy products and ceasing production and distribution during the investigation. This includes all varieties of cheese, yogurt, and crema (a condiment similar to sour cream). The products were sold nationwide under a variety of brand names including 365 Whole Foods Market, Tio Francisco, Don Francisco, Rizo Bros, Rio Grande, Food City, El Huache, La Ordena, San Carlos, Campesino, Santa Maria, Dos Ranchitos and Casa Cardenas.

The outbreak is reportedly responsible for a total of 26 illnesses, 23 hospitalizations and two deaths to date. Eleven states have reported cases including Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Nevada, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington.

The recalled products include the products listed below. Be sure to check your refrigerators and freezers for them, noting the various sell-by dates and UPCs in the notice.

Authorities advise that all surfaces that the products have touched will need to be properly sanitized. The FDA notes that listeria can survive at refrigerator temperatures.  If you have questions you can contact the company at any time at 1-833-296-2233. If you feel ill and suspect you have eaten any of these products be sure to contact your healthcare provider.

Trader Joe’s 

  • Trader Joe’s Chicken Enchiladas Verde (SKU 58292)
  • Trader Joe’s Cilantro Salad Dressing (SKU 36420)
  • Trader Joe’s Elote Chopped Salad Kit (SKU 74768)
  • Trader Joe’s Southwest Salad (SKU 56077)

These products were sold nationwide. Customers can return these products for a refund. Questions are directed to Trader Joe’s Customer Relations at 626-599-3817. You can learn more about the above items from the Trader Joe’s recall notice.

Costco

  • Southwest Chicken Wrap with Sauce (Item # 29433) 
  • Chicken Street Taco Kit (Item #11545)
  • Rojo’s 6 Layer Dip (Item #1345308)
  • Don Pancho Cilantro Lime Crema 2/16oz (Item #1341779)
  • Don Pancho Crema Trio (Item #1796365)

Please see the individual Costco notices for more information on each product, to see where they were sold, and to check “use-by” dates. Customers are advised to return these items for a refund. They can also contact Costco at https://customerservice.costco.com/ or call 800-774-2678 with any questions.

Fresh Creative Foods

Fresh Creative Foods is recalling several salad dressings and a taco kit that were made under the brands Don Pancho, H-E-B, and Trader Joe’s and distributed to Costco, H-E-B, Trader Joe’s, and Albertson’s across 16 states. Check the official recall list for products, use-by dates, and UPCs.

Blanco Sauve

  • Tio Francisco – Blanco Suave – 14 oz

Cotija Cheese

  • Rizo Bros – Cotija- 8 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Cotija – 12 oz, 14 oz
  • Food City – Cotija – 16 oz
  • Tio Francisco, San Carlos – Cotija (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • Rizo Bros – Cotija (Grated) – 7 oz
  • Tio Francisco, Casa Cardenas – Cotija (Grated) – 9 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Cotija (Grated) – 20 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Cotija Enchilado – 14 oz
  • Food City, Casa Cardenas – Cotija Enchilado – 16 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Cotija Enchilado (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)  
  • Tio Francisco – Cotija Rallado – 12 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Cotija Rallado (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)

Crema

  • Tio Francisco – Crema Centroamericana – 16 oz
  • Tio Francisco, Campesino – Crema Centroamericana (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • Tio Francisco – Crema La Deliciosa (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • Tio Francisco – Crema La Suprema (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • Tio Francisco – Crema Latina – 16 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Crema Latina (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • Campesino – Crema Menonita (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes) Tio Francisco, Food City, Santa Maria – Crema Mexicana – 16 oz
  • Tio Francisco, Campesino – Crema Mexicana (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • San Carlos – Crema Mexicana Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • Tio Francisco – Crema Mexicana- 32 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Crema Nortena (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)  
  • Crema Santa Isabel Centroamericana (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • Crema Santa Isabel Latina (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)  
  • Crema Santa Isabel Mexicana (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)

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Queso Fresco 

  • Tio Francisco, San Carlos – Fresco (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • Tio Francisco, El Huache, La Ordena – Fresco (Michoacano) (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)

Oaxaca Cheese

  • Rizo Bros – Oaxaca – 8 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Oaxaca – 12 oz, 14 oz
  • Food City – Oaxaca – 16 oz
  • Tio Francisco, San Carlos – Oaxaca (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • Tio Francisco – Oaxaca (shred) (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)  

Panela Cheese

  • Tio Francisco – Panela – 14 oz
  • Food City – Panela – 16 oz
  • Tio Francisco, San Carlos, Dos Ranchitos, La Ordena, Campesino – Panela (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • Tio Francisco  – Panela Barra (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)  

Queso Crema

  • Food City – Queso Crema- 16 oz
  • San Carlos – Queso Crema (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)  

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Queso Fresco

  • Rizo Bros  – Queso Fresco – 8 oz
  • Don Francisco – Queso Fresco – 10 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Queso Fresco – 12 oz
  • Tio Francisco, Rio Grande – Queso Fresco- 14 oz
  • Food City – Queso Fresco – 16 oz
  • Tio Francisco, Campesino, San Carlos, Santa Maria, Dos Ranchitos – Queso Fresco (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various size)

Other cheeses

  • Tio Francisco – Queso Para Frei – 16 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Queso Para Freir (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes) Tio Francisco – Queso Seco – 14 oz
  • Tio Francisco – Requeson – 14 oz, 15oz
  • Tio Francisco – Requeson (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)
  • 365 Whole Foods Market – Ricotta Part Skim- 15 oz
  • 365 Whole Foods Market – Ricotta Whole Milk – 15 oz

Yogurt

  • Tio Francisco – Yogurt (Plain, Strawberry, Peach & Mango) – (Available to consumers at retail deli counters in various sizes)

Meaghan Cameron, MS
Meaghan has more than 15 years of experience in writing and editing food, travel, fitness, sports, and lifestyle material. Her professional journey began at Reader's Digest, where she honed her skills and developed a passion for creating engaging content. Throughout her career, she has contributed her expertise to renowned platforms such as Food Network, Martha Stewart, Outside Television, and Eat This, Not That! Additionally, Meaghan has valuable experience in radio and video production. Before entering the world of content creation, Meaghan spent more than a decade working in the restaurant industry. This hands-on experience has provided her with insider knowledge and secrets about the workings of the industry. Meaghan holds a bachelor's degree in English from the State University of New York (SUNY) Purchase and a master's degree in publishing from Pace University.