Shutdown from Listeria at Kellogg plant contributed to waffle shortage

The company's Bucknell Road facility was closed for about three weeks in early September for cleaning after the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes was found in a sample of buttermilk waffles. The product was not shipped to the marketplace.

The facility, south of I-20 and west of I-285 near Thornton Road, had resumed production on two shifts after the cleanup when heavy rains caused flooding in the area, leading to a second plant shutdown beginning Sept. 21. Kellogg undertook a second cleanup as a safety measure, said Oscar Garrison, assistant commissioner of consumer protection for the Georgia Department of Agriculture.

"They didn't want to take a chance," Garrison said, adding that no Listeria was found in subsequent testing.

The Atlanta plant is back in operation, but the Eggo waffle shortage continues, in part because of maintenance work at Kellogg's Rossville, Tenn., bakery that has taken some production lines out of operation.

"The fact that our Atlanta waffle bakery was not producing products for a total of approximately seven weeks -- in addition to the equipment maintenance -- both contributed to the shortage we're currently experiencing," Kellogg spokeswoman Kris Charles said.

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