Houston Matters

Blue Bell Recall: What Will it Mean for the Beloved Texas Brand?

Brenham-based Blue Bell Creameries is voluntarily pulling all of its products off store shelves after more samples tested positive for listeria, bacteria that can cause foodborne illness. The recall includes all ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet and frozen snacks made at Blue Bell facilities. In a statement from company CEO and President Paul Kruse, he […]

Brenham-based Blue Bell Creameries is voluntarily pulling all of its products off store shelves after more samples tested positive for listeria, bacteria that can cause foodborne illness. The recall includes all ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet and frozen snacks made at Blue Bell facilities.

In a statement from company CEO and President Paul Kruse, he says quote: “We’re committed to doing the 100 percent right thing, and the best way to do that is to take all of our products off the market until we are confident that they are all safe.” He adds: “At this point, we cannot say with certainty how Listeria was introduced to our facilities. We continue to work with our team of experts to eliminate this problem.”

With this news, we discuss the health concerns surrounding the contamination — including the symptoms and treatment for the foodborne illness. Then, we consider the potential fallout for Blue Bell. What will it take for the company to gain the public’s trust back after such a massive recall?

We hear from Dr. Eric Brown, associate professor in the Department of Epidemiology, Human Genetics and Environmental Sciences at UTHealth School of Public Health and Betsy Gelb, the Sachnowitz Professor of Marketing and Entrepreneurship, University of Houston’s C.T. Bauer College of Business.

(Consumers with questions can call Blue Bell at 866-608-3940 Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Central Time and Saturday between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. CDT. Additional information is available from the Texas Department of State Health Services).

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