Victoria’s Chief Health Officer Dr Rosemary Lester has warned against eating a number of Jindi and Wattle Valley-branded soft cheeses sold at delicatessens and independent supermarkets throughout Australia.
And a national investigation is currently underway into a cluster of eight cases of listeria infection and three other cases possibly linked to the cluster.
“Of the eight linked cases there has been one case each in Queensland, Tasmania and Western Australia, two in Victoria and three in New South Wales,” Dr Lester said.
The Victorian brie and camembert cheeses are 1kg Jindi brie, 1kg Jindi camembert, 1kg Wattle Valley double brie and 1kg Wattle Valley camembert - all with a best before date of December 21.
“These products have been voluntarily recalled nationally as a precaution, due to the potential risk of listeria infection,” Dr Lester said.
“Listeria infection is particularly dangerous for pregnant women, their unborn babies and elderly people. It can cause miscarriages in pregnant women and even death in people with compromised immune systems,” Dr Lester said.
“Investigations into listeria are complex as it can be difficult to identify the source. Symptoms of illness can take up to 70 days to appear.”
Dr Lester said consumers should check the best before date of any Jindi or Wattle Valley soft cheeses and if from the identified batch discard it or return to the place of purchase for a full refund.
“Consumers who have purchased a cut portion of camembert or brie from a supermarket or delicatessen who are unsure of the brand should discard it,” Dr Lester said.
The manufacturer of the cheese, Jindi Cheese Pty Ltd, is licensed with Dairy Food Safety Victoria and is fully co-operating with the investigation.
Healthy people usually show only mild symptoms. However, in people at risk, early symptoms of listeria infection include fever, headache, tiredness and aches and pains.
Reviewed 09 September 2015