First Blue Bell Ice Cream, Now Sabra Hummus — Why All The Food Recalls Lately?


Hummus fans, listen up. (Photo: Sabra) 

Today, we’re hearing word of yet another recall: a routine inspection of popular Sabra hummus at a Kroger market in Port Huron, Michigan on March 30 revealed the potential for Listeria. The FDA is now working with the company to pull around 30,000 cases of their Classic Hummus off shelves.

This news comes on the heels of a Blue Bell ice cream recall, which has now been linked to eight cases of listeria in Texas and Kansas dating back to 2010 — three of whom died — and has prompted the company to remove 25 products from its roster since last month.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said tests confirmed that three people in Texas have a similar strain of listeria previously found in five others at a hospital in Wichita, Kansas. Three of the five in Kansas have died and health officials there say listeria might have been a contributing factor in the deaths.

The three in Texas were hospitalized at some point from 2011 to 2014 for unrelated problems when they developed listeria, the CDC said in a statement. They apparently became ill when they ate Blue Bell ice cream at the hospital, which was produced at the company’s plant in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.

“We’re continuing to monitor for additional cases and ensuring we’re taking all actions needed to protect public health,” said Dr. Brendan Jackson, a medical epidemiologist with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The food-borne bacteria Listeria can cause everything from mild symptoms like high fever and nausea, and can prove fatal for those with weakened immune function like the elderly, pregnant women or young children. Around 1,600 people in the U.S. are infected with listeria annually, primarily in vulnerable groups, and the bacterium is the third leading cause of food-poisoning deaths in the United States.

If you think you’ve been hearing about a lot of recalls lately, you’re right.

But that’s not necessarily a terrible thing, says Lisa Moskovitz, RD, founder of New York Nutrition Group.

“The good news is that the blame is not likely on the fact that manufacturers are getting super-lazy and negligent with their food labeling, or with following food safety guidelines,” she tells Yahoo Health. “The FDA has just become more and more diligent on detecting these types of contaminants, and then protecting consumers by spreading the news as fast as possible.”

With the advent of social media, word about a recall can spread like never wildfire — whereas even just several years back, news was less widely-circulated. “For that reason, it seems like food recalls are popping up all at once — but in fact, it’s really just because our technology has allowed us to spread the news faster,” Moskovitz explains. “At the same time, the FDA is conducting more and more tests to make sure that all U.S. consumers are protected.”

Here’s a full list of Sabra products and Blue Bell products being recalled. If there’s one in your fridge or freezer, bring it back to your point of purchase to receive a full refund: 


  • Classic Hummus in 10-ounce sizes with UPC/SKU 040822011143 / 300067

  • Classic Hummus in 30-ounce sizes with UPC/SKU 040822014687 / 300074

  • Classic Hummus without Garnish in 32 ounce sizes with UPC/SKU 040822342049 / 301216

  • Classic Hummus in 17-ounce six-packs with UPC/SKU 040822017497 / 301290

  • Hummus Dual Pack Classic/Garlic 23.5 ounce with UPC/SKU 040822342209 / 301283


Blue Bell Ice Cream Pints - UPC 071899-05101 5

  • Banana Pudding Ice Cream (Pint) - 021217S

  • Butter Crunch Ice Cream  (Pint) - 021917S

  • Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream (Pint) - 022017S

  • Cookies’n Cream Ice Cream (Pint) - 030317S,030617S

  • Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream (Pint) - 030417S

  • Dutch Chocolate Ice Cream (Pint) - 032317S

  • Moo-liennium Crunch Ice Cream (Pint) - 032417S, 032517S

Blue Bell Sherbet Pint - UPC 0 71899-19990 8

  • Rainbow Sherbet (Pint) - 021717S, 021817S, 022#17S, 030217S

Blue Bell Sherbet Quart - UPC 0 71899-18992 3 

  • Orange Sherbet (Quart) - 032617S

  • Mixed Berry Sherbet (Quart) - 032717S

3 ounce Tab Lid Cup - Product #136 (institutional/food service cup only)

  • Rainbow Sherbet (3 ounce tab lid cup) - 022417S, 022617S, 022717S

Brown Rim Half Gallon - UPC 0 71899-73501 4

  • Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream (half gallon) - 031317T

Light Half Gallon - UPC 0 71899-73501 4

  • Homemade Vanilla Light Ice Cream (Half Gallon) - 031917T

Consumers with any questions may call the FDA toll free 1-888-957-2272, Monday – Friday 9:00AM to 4:30PM Central Time.

- with additional reporting by the Associated Press