The dairy company at the centre of a major product recall say they're investigating all avenues to uncover the cause of an e.coli contamination.
The dairy company at the centre of a major product recall say they're investigating all avenues to uncover the cause of an e.coli contamination. Warren Lynam

Maleny Cheese owners speak out over feta contamination saga

THE dairy company at the centre of a major product recall say they're investigating all avenues to uncover the cause of an e.coli contamination.

Maleny Cheese Factory voluntarily issued a product recall earlier this week for its herb and garlic feta cheese and have got on the front foot with investigations.

Last night Queensland Health released the recall for the cheese, which could cause illness if consumed.

It has a use-by date on May 21, 2019.

"Those concerned about their health should seek medical advice or call 13 HEALTH (13 43 25 84) and should return the product to the place of purchase for a full refund," Queensland Health said.

"The product has been available for sale at Market Stall, IGA, Fruit and Veg Stores and Dairy Stores in Queensland."

Owner Markus Bucher says it is the first and only time in 15 years they've had to recall a product.

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Sara and Markus Bucher from Maleny Cheese have won a gold medal at the Australian Grand Dairy Awards with their Apple and Cinnamon yoghurt.
 Photo: Warren Lynam / Sunshine Coast Daily
Sara and Markus Bucher from Maleny Cheese Factory. Warren Lynam

He said the likelihood of anyone actually getting sick was minimal but they're taking no chances.

"We found elevated types of the unwanted bacteria and we are now investigating," Mr Bucher said.

"We have used new ingredients in this product and are doing testing on that component.

"Only a handful of products were actually sold - about 20 items - and only to two shops and two market stalls."

Mr Bucher was so confident of his product, he went so far as to eat the 100 grams of the feta.

"I haven't experienced even the slightest symptoms, I ate it with confidence," he said.

"I understand you can't be too careful but I am confident there is no risk to consumers."

 

CCTV footage of arson attack on Maleny Cheese Factory.
CCTV footage of arson attack on Maleny Cheese Factory. Contributed

He encouraged customers who find the product to return it to the store for a full refund.

The past six months haven't been kind to the Clifford St business.

 

In September the store was destroyed in an arson attack that caused $100,000 in damages.

Mr Bucker had nothing but high praise for his 25 staff and confirmed the store would be back open by March.

"It is hard. When someone throws a bomb at your factory, you're left to pick up the pieces," he said.

"My staff have been absolutely fantastic."