Listeria outbreak linked to deli meat and cheese reaches California for second time
A rare, deadly illness that spread from a deli and killed more than 100 people linked to deli meat and cheese has been traced back to infected meat at a dairy in central California.
The strain of Listeria monocytogenes, commonly called Listeria, killed the most people on record in Listeria outbreaks, according to an analysis by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the state health department.
In September, a deli in Santa Clara and a cheese shop in Monterey counties were hit with a second Listeria outbreak. Both outbreaks were traced back to milk from a dairy in Colusa County.
In addition to Listeria cases linked to deli meat and cheese, the infections have shown up in more than 65 restaurants and workplaces, and have killed more than one person, state health officials said.
No illnesses have been linked to the cheese in Colusa County.
A man who had worked at the dairy for more than six months fell ill after eating deli meats and cheese there, and died last month. His wife, also ill, was hospitalized, according to state health officials.
The Monterey County deaths are believed to be linked to the Colusa County outbreaks, because they included other food items from the deli, including turkey meat, deli meat and deli salads, health officials said.
The second Monterey County outbreak, which began in mid-August at another dairy, also included deli products.
A man in his 20s died after collapsing at his workplaces after eating deli meat.
The last cases of listeriosis linked to deli food began in October, and more than 100 people in six states have now been infected, federal health officials said.
No deaths connected to the outbreaks have been reported.
As of Thursday, health officials had reported 927 cases of listeriosis, the illness that causes brain inflammation,