Deli-sliced meats and cheeses, a staple of many discerning New Yorkers’ daily and late-night diets, have been linked to an ongoing listeria outbreak, says the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
According to the CDC, eight people have been hospitalized in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Michigan, as a result of the bacteria, and one person has died. In every case, people felt sick after eating meats and cheeses sliced and purchased at delis.
In their recent analysis of deli meats, Consumer Reports says they identified listeria in a sample of sliced turkey purchased at a New York City deli. The CDC confirmed that the strain was genetically similar to the strain that has sickened people. That strain was found by CDC investigators at retail locations in New York and Rhode Island.
The agency hasn’t pinpointed a specific supplier or source whose meaty, cheesy products have been making people sick. For now, the CDC isn’t telling us to quit eating cold cuts—but people who are at a higher risk of getting sick, such as people over the age of 65 and with shaky immune systems—are better off abstaining from these products unless they’re served “steaming hot just before serving” (listeria can’t survive at high temperatures).
And if you’re one of those at-risk carnivores who just can’t turn down deli meat, try scrolling back up to the photo at the top of this story and see if your craving persists.