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Saturday, March 6, 2021

Blue Bell item-making trial runs begin after listeria scare

BRENHAM, Texas (AP) — Blue Bell Creameries has started ice cream production trial runs in Alabama three months after a listeria scare halted all sales.

The Texas-based company said it’s evaluating the enhanced production processes at its plant in Sylacauga, Alabama.

Blue Bell earlier this month notified federal and Alabama health officials of its plans for test production. The runs began Wednesday. Company officials Friday didn’t immediately return messages. Blue Bell has not said when sales will resume.

Blue Bell products were linked to 10 listeria illnesses in four states, including three deaths in Kansas, before a voluntary recall April 20.

Listeria is a bacteria that can cause serious illness, especially in older adults, pregnant women and those with weakened immune systems. Contaminated products were found at Blue Bell’s Texas and Oklahoma plants.

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