Panera Bread has issued a national recall of cream cheese products from its bakery/cafes due to the concern of potential listeria contamination.
Although no illnesses have been reported, the chain said it issued the recall "out of an abundance of caution."
This was after samples of one variety of two-ounce cream cheese from a single production day showed a positive result for the presence of listeria.
Tests on cream cheese samples manufactured before and after the production run in question all showed no traces of listeria, the company said.
Listeriosis is a serious infection typically caused by eating food contaminated with the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes, the contaminant found in the single Panera testing.
The infection is most likely to cause sickness in pregnant women and their newborns, adults aged 65 or older, and people with weakened immune systems.
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, symptoms are usually short-term in healthy individuals and may include high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea.
Panera said the recall applies to all varieties of the company's two-ounce and eight-ounce cream cheese products.
This includes all cream cheese products with an expiration date on or before April 2, 2018.
The two-ounce and eight-ounce varieties covered by the recall are: Plain Cream Cheese; Reduced-Fat Plain Cream Cheese; Reduced-Fat Chive & Onion Cream Cheese; Reduced-Fat Honey Walnut Cream Cheese; and Reduced-Fat Wild Blueberry Cream Cheese.
The recall affects products sold in Panera's U.S. bakery-cafes, and does not affect the company's Canada facilities or any other Panera Bread food products.
Panera advised consumers who have these products to discard them immediately and contact the company's customer service department at 1-855-6-PANERA from Monday through Sunday, 5:00 AM to 10:00 PM. CST, or visit Panera.custhelp.com for a full refund.
Panera's president and CEO, Bill Hurst said in a statement issued with the recall, "The safety of our guests and associates is paramount, therefore we are recalling all cream cheese products sold in the U.S. with an active shelf life. We have likewise ceased all manufacturing in the associated cream cheese facility."