Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a blogger and producer who currently works on The Two Way, NPR's flagship blog. In the past, he has coordinated digital features for Morning Edition and Fresh Air, and edited the rundown of All Things Considered. He frequently contributes to other NPR blogs, such as All Tech Considered and The Salt.

Chappell's work at NPR has ranged from being the site's first full-time homepage editor to being the lead writer and editor on the London 2012 Olympics blog, The Torch. His assignments have included being the lead web producer for NPR's trip to Asia's Grand Trunk Road, as well as establishing the Peabody Award-winning StoryCorps on NPR.org.

In 2009, Chappell was a key editorial member of the small team that redesigned NPR's web site. One year later, the site won its first Peabody Award, along with the National Press Foundation's Excellence in Online Journalism award.

At NPR, Chappell has trained both digital and radio staff to use digital tools to tell compelling stories, in addition to "evangelizing" — promoting more collaboration between legacy and digital departments.

Prior to joining NPR in late 2003, Chappell worked on the Assignment Desk at CNN International, handling coverage in areas from the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America, and coordinating CNN's pool coverage out of Qatar during the Iraq war.

Chappell's work for CNN also included producing Web stories and editing digital video for SI.com, and editing and producing stories for CNN.com's features division.

Before joining CNN, Chappell wrote about movies, restaurants and music for alternative weeklies, in addition to his first job: editing the police blotter.

A holder of bachelor's degrees in English and History from the University of Georgia, he attended graduate school for English Literature at the University of South Carolina.

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The Two-Way
12:49 pm
Fri May 1, 2015

Tesla CEO Elon Musk Unveils Home Battery; Is $3,000 Cheap Enough?

A photo released by Tesla shows its new Powerwall lithium-ion battery pack mounted on the wall (left) of a garage behind one of the company's electric cars.
Tesla Energy

Originally published on Fri May 1, 2015 1:32 pm

In an ambitious bid to move beyond the electric car market, Tesla has announced that it will start selling large batteries to let homeowners store electricity. The Powerwall home battery starts at $3,000.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk unveiled the new batteries Thursday night, in a move that had been both highly anticipated and the subject of much speculation. With a sleek surface and a depth of only about 7 inches, the Powerwall can be mounted on a garage wall or another surface, indoors or outside. It's roughly 4 feet high and 3 feet wide.

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The Two-Way
6:41 am
Fri May 1, 2015

Charges Against 6 Officers In Freddie Gray's Death Range From Murder To Assault

Marilyn Mosby, state's attorney for Baltimore City, announced criminal charges against all six officers in the death of Freddie Gray, who suffered a fatal injury while in police custody.
Alex Brandon AP

Originally published on Fri May 1, 2015 3:30 pm

The death of Freddie Gray was a homicide, and six Baltimore police officers now face criminal charges that include second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter, Baltimore chief prosecutor Marilyn J. Mosby says.

Mosby announced the charges Friday morning, citing her office's "thorough and independent" investigation and the medical examiner's report on Gray's death. She said warrants were issued Friday for the officers' arrest.

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The Two-Way
9:41 am
Thu April 30, 2015

Kill The Messenger: NASA Orbiter Crashes Into Mercury

This image of a "red spot" on Mercury, which is thought to be the result of a volcanic explosion, was sent to Earth by the Messenger probe in 2011.
NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington

Originally published on Thu April 30, 2015 3:36 pm

After 4,104 orbits of Mercury and billions of miles of space travel, NASA's Messenger orbiter ended its mission with a quiet bang on Thursday. Messenger crashed into the planet it has been orbiting for four years.

NASA says the orbiter began the process of lithobraking at 3:26 p.m. ET — meaning that Messenger essentially scraped to a stop after hitting the planet's surface traveling at thousands of miles an hour. The Oxford English Dictionary reminds us that litho is the combining form for the Greek word for "stone."

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The Two-Way
6:05 am
Thu April 30, 2015

10 Men Sent To Prison Over Shooting Of Pakistani Girl Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai, who was 15 when she was shot, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize last year.
Hakon Mosvold Larsen EPA/Landov

Originally published on Thu April 30, 2015 6:25 pm

A Pakistani anti-terrorism court has sent 10 men to prison for 25-year terms for their roles in the near-fatal attack on activist Malala Yousafzai in 2012. The girl who has since come to be known only by her first name later won global renown for her work promoting education for girls.

From Islamabad, NPR's Philip Reeves reports:

"The 10 were convicted by an anti-terrorism court in a closed hearing in Swat in north-west Pakistan. That's where Malala Yousafzai, then aged 15, was shot and seriously wounded as she returned from school.

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The Two-Way
5:42 am
Thu April 30, 2015

Rescue Brings A Bit Of Good News To Nepal's Capital After Earthquake

Members of Nepal's Armed Police Force carry an officer as they cheer the successful rescue of a teenager who had been trapped by Saturday's earthquake in Kathmandu.
Navesh Chitrakar Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu April 30, 2015 8:52 am

There hasn't been much to cheer about in Nepal this week as it copes with a devastating earthquake — but cheers and applause broke out in Kathmandu Thursday after a teenager was pulled alive from a collapsed building.

For five days, the teenager was covered in the rubble of a seven-story building hit by Saturday's powerful quake. Rescue workers who got him out included an American disaster response team that arrived in Nepal this week.

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The Two-Way
9:52 am
Wed April 29, 2015

Calvin Peete, Pro Golf's 'Mr. Accuracy,' Dies At Age 71

Calvin Peete, seen here in 1995, has died at age 71. A 12-time winner on the PGA Tour, Peete was 23 years old before he began to play golf.
J.D. Cuban Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 12:13 pm

Calvin Peete, who won 12 PGA events during a long career as a professional golfer, has died at age 71. Peete was famous for his ability to hit long and accurate drives, and for many years, he was the most successful black golfer in the world.

Peete died Wednesday morning in Atlanta. His death was confirmed to NPR by the PGA Tour.

During his 25-year career, Peete won more than $3 million in tournament purses. He didn't take up the game of golf until he was 23, and he succeeded despite not being able to extend his left elbow fully — the result of a childhood accident.

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The Two-Way
8:47 am
Wed April 29, 2015

Bud Light Pulls Label With Message That Sparked Backlash

Anheuser-Busch has apologized for a message on bottles of Bud Light that said it is "the perfect beer for removing 'no' from your vocabulary for the night." The labels are no longer being produced.
GhosX9 Reddit

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 3:10 pm

The label promised that Bud Light was "the perfect beer for removing 'no' from your vocabulary for the night." But that's exactly the word that occurred to many people who say the message recalls alcohol's troublesome connection to sexual assaults.

Anheuser-Busch says the slogan is one of many messages it has printed on beer labels as part of its "UpForWhatever" ad campaign. But it acknowledges that it "missed the mark" with this one, saying that it has stopped making the label.

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The Two-Way
6:38 am
Wed April 29, 2015

In Nepal, A Flood Of People Leave Capital To Return Home

A young girl sits on her luggage as she waits in a long line with her family, hoping to board buses provided by the government to return to their homes outside Kathmandu.
Diego Azubel EPA /LANDOV

Several days after a devastating earthquake hit Nepal, officials are using helicopters to ferry aid to remote areas — and thousands of people are leaving Kathmandu, where many had sought refuge. Rescue crews are still working to help survivors of the 7.8-magnitude quake.

Reporting from the district of Gorkha, the epicenter of Saturday's tremor, NPR's Julie McCarthy says, "When we arrived last night, you could feel the ground shaking constantly. It felt like Jello, and it lasted through the evening."

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The Two-Way
5:32 am
Wed April 29, 2015

Baltimore Update: A Forceful Mom And A Fan-Free Baseball Game

A woman in Baltimore holds a sign Tuesday night telling protesters to go home; a curfew and community intervention are being credited with helping ease tensions in the city.
John Taggart EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 12:15 pm

The streets of Baltimore were quieter Tuesday night, a day after vandalism and rioting forced officials to implement a curfew. Today, the Orioles plan to play an MLB game without an audience, and a woman who yanked her son away from potential trouble is making headlines.

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The Two-Way
10:59 am
Tue April 28, 2015

Supreme Court Hears Challenge To 4 States' Same-Sex-Marriage Ban

Demonstrators for and against same-sex marriage rallied in front of the Supreme Court on Tuesday morning.
Emily Jan NPR

Originally published on Tue April 28, 2015 2:06 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court is hearing arguments Tuesday about whether states have the power to ban same-sex marriage. A dozen couples are challenging the bans in Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky and Tennessee.

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The Two-Way
8:11 am
Tue April 28, 2015

Google Announces Partnership With Newspapers In Europe

Originally published on Tue April 28, 2015 9:12 am

After years of arguments over how its Google News service handles content in Europe, Google is offering both money and cooperation to large publishers in several EU countries. Acknowledging past mistakes, a Google executive says, "We are a teenage 'tech' company after all!"

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The Two-Way
6:34 am
Tue April 28, 2015

Australia To Recall Envoy To Indonesia Over Execution Of 'Bali 9' Pair

A composite image of file photos shows Australians Myuran Sukumaran (left) and Andrew Chan in Denpasar district court in Bali. Indonesia executed the two men, along with six others, early Wednesday.
Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue April 28, 2015 6:30 pm

Updated at 8:22 p.m. ET

Australia is withdrawing its ambassador from Jakarta following Indonesia's execution of two Australians convicted of drug smuggling.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott, at a news conference today, called the executions of Australians Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, two of the so-called Bali 9, "cruel" and "unnecessary." He called it a "dark moment" in the relationship between Australia and Indonesia.

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The Two-Way
9:06 am
Mon April 27, 2015

Freddie Gray's Funeral Spurs Calls For Calm In Baltimore

Mourners line up to pay their respects during Freddie Gray's funeral at the New Shiloh Baptist Church in Baltimore, Md., on Monday.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 27, 2015 2:12 pm

In Baltimore, the funeral of Freddie Gray, the 25-year-old black man who died after being arrested, was held Monday. Gray's family and many public figures are calling for peace, after a weekend that saw violence and arrests.

"We must not allow an already tragic situation to tear our community apart," Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., said in a statement.

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The Two-Way
7:58 am
Mon April 27, 2015

Leave The Selfie Sticks At Home, Wimbledon Says

Tennis fans at this year's Wimbledon will have to take selfies the old-fashioned way, like these fans at last year's championships.
Dan Kitwood Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 27, 2015 8:33 am

Taking the same stance as the Kentucky Derby and other big events, the All England Lawn Tennis Club is telling ticket holders for this year's Wimbledon not to try to bring selfie sticks to matches. The club reportedly cited the devices' "nuisance value."

Large music festivals Coachella and Lollapalooza banned the photo-taking props last month, with Coachella dismissing them as "narciss-sticks." Many museums and galleries have similar policies.

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The Two-Way
6:34 am
Mon April 27, 2015

James Holmes' Trial Begins In Colorado, 3 Years After Cinema Shooting

A courtroom sketch shows accused murderer James Holmes sitting with Arapahoe County Public Defender Tamara Brady at the Arapahoe District Courthouse in Centennial, Colo., in January. His trial will begin with opening statements Monday.
Jeff Kandyba EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Mon April 27, 2015 2:23 pm

(This post was updated at 4:23 p.m. ET.)

More than 1,000 days after James Holmes opened fire on an audience at a midnight movie in Aurora, Colo., his trial began in earnest on Monday.

Prosecutors said that two mental health evaluations found Holmes was sane.

The AP reports that a prosecutor said Holmes killed 12 people and injured 70 more because he thought he " had lost his career, lost his love life, lost his purpose."

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The Two-Way
5:24 am
Mon April 27, 2015

More Than 4,000 Dead In Nepal As Earthquake Toll Rises

A woman and child rest in the open outside a destroyed building Sunday, a day after a major earthquake leveled homes in Kumalpur village on the outskirts of Kathmandu, Nepal. Nine people reportedly died in the small village, including four children.
Narendrea Shrestha EPA/Landov

Originally published on Mon April 27, 2015 1:07 pm

Updated at noon ET.

Nepal's devastating earthquake that hit Saturday is now blamed for at least 4,000 deaths. Reconstruction is estimated to cost billions. International aid efforts are underway, but aftershocks are rattling survivors' nerves and making the recovery even more challenging.

Rescue crews and aid groups are working to reach survivors — but their efforts are being hampered by the stricken areas' remote locations. Roads that are drivable are clogged with traffic.

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The Two-Way
12:17 pm
Thu April 23, 2015

Dwayne Bowe, A Former Chief, Flies To Kansas City For Fan's Funeral

Wide receiver Dwayne Bowe greets fans before a Kansas City Chiefs game last November. After fan Betty Johnson, known to players as "Grandma," died at 86 last week, Bowe flew back to Kansas City.
Charlie Riedel AP

Originally published on Thu April 23, 2015 1:00 pm

He plays for Cleveland now — but when the NFL's Dwayne Bowe heard that one of the former Kansas City Chiefs' biggest fans had died, he flew to Missouri to attend the funeral of Betty Johnson, age 86.

The gesture is perhaps the most notable of several made by a team whose players called Johnson, a long-time season ticket holder and retired school-bus driver, "Grandma."

Bowe, who has been a star receiver in the NFL, spent eight seasons in Kansas City before the team released him this year. He signed a new contract with the Cleveland Browns last month.

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The Two-Way
7:51 am
Thu April 23, 2015

Watch A Time-Lapse Video Of The Calbuco Volcano Erupting In Chile

Chile's Calbuco volcano is seen from the town of Puerto Montt on Wednesday, as it spews a high column of ash and lava.
Diego Main AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 23, 2015 10:24 am

The Calbuco volcano in southern Chile erupted this week for the first time in four decades. Quiet since 1972, it's blown twice since Wednesday, generating striking images and concerns over the effects of both the lava and a mammoth cloud of ash.

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The Two-Way
5:31 am
Thu April 23, 2015

Petraeus Sentenced To 2 Years' Probation, Fine For Sharing Classified Info

Former CIA Director and retired Gen. David Petraeus was sentenced Thursday to two years of probation and must pay a $100,000 fine.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 24, 2015 9:37 am

Updated at 11:34 a.m. ET Friday

Former CIA Director and retired Gen. David Petraeus was sentenced Thursday to two years of probation and handed a $100,000 fine for the unauthorized removal and retention of classified material, in the form of notebooks he shared with his lover.

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The Two-Way
5:04 am
Thu April 23, 2015

Saudi Airstrikes Target Houthi Forces In Yemen, Despite Talks Of Peace

Supporters of the Shiite Houthi movement brandish weapons as they take part in a demonstration in Yemen's capital of Sanaa on Thursday, protesting the Saudi-led military "Decisive Storm" air campaign.
Mohammed Huwais AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 23, 2015 8:04 am

Despite Saudi Arabia's announcement earlier this week that a coalition would wind down the nearly month-old military campaign it has been waging in Yemen, warplanes have been hitting areas under Houthi control Thursday. It's now very unclear when peace talks that were mentioned earlier this week might occur.

From Riyadh, NPR's Leila Fadel reports for our Newscast unit:

"The Saudis had said that although strikes were ending, they would use force against Houthi movements inside the poor Gulf country.

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The Two-Way
4:38 am
Thu April 23, 2015

Michael Brown's Parents File Civil Suit Against Ferguson And Former Officer

Originally published on Thu April 23, 2015 3:34 pm

The parents of Michael Brown, the unarmed man whom a Ferguson, Mo., police officer shot and killed last August, have filed a civil lawsuit against the city, along with former police chief Thomas Jackson and Darren Wilson, the now-former officer who shot Brown, 18.

The lawsuit was filed by Michael Brown Sr. and Lesley McSpadden at the St. Louis County Courthouse Thursday morning. It says Wilson "unjustifiably shot and killed" Brown, using "an unnecessary and unreasonable" amount of force.

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The Two-Way
11:35 am
Wed April 22, 2015

Site Of Capsized Migrant Boat Was 'Like A Floating Cemetery'

Italian authorities aboard the Italian coast guard vessel Bruno Gregoretti check on migrants who survived a recent sinking in the Mediterranean Sea. The coast guard vessel arrived at Catania's port in Sicily on Tuesday.
Alessandro Di Meo EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Wed April 22, 2015 1:14 pm

Even to experienced rescue crews that have been saving migrants at sea for months, the sight of survivors bobbing among corpses in the Mediterranean Sea was a shock. The boat they were on had been stuffed with would-be migrants when it capsized Saturday.

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The Two-Way
10:33 am
Wed April 22, 2015

'People' Names Sandra Bullock, 50, World's Most Beautiful Woman

Sandra Bullock is at the top of People magazine's World's Most Beautiful list for 2015.
People

Actress Sandra Bullock tops People magazine's World's Most Beautiful list for 2015, becoming the oldest person to do so in the list's 25-year history. Three-time winner Julia Roberts was 42 when she last took the top spot.

It's the first time Bullock has won the honor — but if you've been experiencing cultural déjà vu lately, you're not alone.

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The Two-Way
8:43 am
Wed April 22, 2015

Gift Worth $400 Million To Art Institute Of Chicago Includes Works By Warhol

Andy Warhol's Mona Lisa Four Times, 1978.
Courtesy of The Art Institute of Chicago, Gift of Edlis/Neeson Collection

Originally published on Wed April 22, 2015 1:35 pm

Chicago art collectors Stefan Edlis and Gael Neeson have given a "landmark gift" of pop art to the Art Institute of Chicago, handing over 42 works that were created by Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns and others.

After the donation was officially accepted Tuesday night, the museum's president and director, Douglas Druick, told The Chicago Tribune, "This is one of the landmark gifts in our 136-year history."

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The Two-Way
6:50 am
Wed April 22, 2015

Saudi Arabia Shifts Military Campaign In Yemen; Airstrikes Continue

Originally published on Wed April 22, 2015 7:49 am

After announcing a more limited military campaign against rebels in Yemen, Saudi Arabia continues to conduct airstrikes that began weeks ago. President Obama says the U.S. has warned Iran, which has condemned the Saudi strikes, not to deliver weapons to rebels in Yemen.

It's unclear what the Saudi-led coalition is planning for the next phase of its military operation in Yemen. The group has said it will protect civilians, ensure the flow of humanitarian aid and secure safe passage for foreigners who want to flee the violence.

NPR's Alice Fordham reports:

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The Two-Way
6:19 am
Wed April 22, 2015

Wilding? Ruff Ride? Dog's Road Romp On Tractor Sparks Puns

Don the dog mugs for the camera after his joyride.
Traffic Scotland via Twitter

Originally published on Wed April 22, 2015 9:41 am

As soon as the news broke, Traffic Scotland took pains to say it was a serious event, not a joke. But that didn't stop people from putting their own spin on the story of the border collie who took control of a small tractor — which then drove onto a highway Wednesday.

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The Two-Way
5:44 am
Wed April 22, 2015

'Sliver Of Hope' In Freddie Gray Case, Former Baltimore Police Chief Says

Protesters rally after a march for Freddie Gray that ended in front of the Baltimore Police Department's Western District police station Tuesday. Gray, 25, died from spinal injuries on April 19, one week after being arrested.
Drew Angerer Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 23, 2015 7:28 am

"Enough is enough!" hundreds of people chanted over and over in Baltimore Tuesday night, at a rally for Freddie Gray, a young black man who died in police custody earlier this month. A federal civil rights inquiry was launched Tuesday.

"We've had some other problems with African-Americans dying in police custody and at the hands of police officers here in Baltimore city," says Leonard Hamm, a former commissioner of the Baltimore Police Department who served from 2004-2007.

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The Two-Way
11:25 am
Tue April 21, 2015

What A Bleeping Day: Reds Manager Takes Media To Task

Cincinnati Reds manager Bryan Price, seen here during a home game, has apologized for the language he used in a long tirade.
Joe Robbins Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 21, 2015 1:13 pm

More than 80 profanities in under six minutes. That's the statistic baseball writers are talking about today, after Cincinnati Reds manager Bryan Price aired his frustrations with both the media and his team's struggles Monday.

Price took vehement exception to journalists' attempts to report on the Reds' personnel moves and the status of All-Star catcher Devin Mesoraco, who had at that point missed six consecutive games.

Before Monday's game, Price said Mesoraco wouldn't be available. Then he was asked, again, about the slugger's status.

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The Two-Way
8:23 am
Tue April 21, 2015

Captain In Deadly Migrant Boat Sinking Charged With Manslaughter

Mohammed Ali Malek (left) and Mahmud Bikhit (center) were identified by survivors as the captain and a crew member of the vessel that sank in the Mediterranean this weekend. They're seen here shortly before an Italian coast guard ship took them to Catania, Sicily.
Alessandro Bianchi Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue April 21, 2015 3:27 pm

Italian authorities have arrested the captain and a crew member of the boat that capsized in the Mediterranean Sea over the weekend. The pair are among the boat's 28 survivors; the United Nations says more than 800 would-be migrants died after cramming themselves onto the 66-foot boat.

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The Two-Way
6:20 am
Tue April 21, 2015

Blue Bell Widens Recall To All Of Its Products Over Listeria Worries

After initially recalling products made at its Oklahoma facility, Blue Bell is now asking retailers and customers to throw away or return all of its products currently on the market.
Blue Bell

Originally published on Tue April 21, 2015 8:04 am

Texas ice cream maker Blue Bell Creameries has widely expanded a voluntary recall over Listeria concerns, seeking the return of all of its products currently on the market. Blue Bell products are sold in 23 states.

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