WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) - Blue Bell Ice Cream will be returning to Wichita stores next month, nearly eight years after a listeria outbreak that killed three Kansans.

The company said Monday on social media that the ice cream will be available beginning April 17. The post did not say which stores or chains, but there will be a sampling event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the 17th at the Dillons Marketplace at Central and Rock Road.  

Blue Bell Creameries announced in May 2015 that it was shutting down its distribution center in Wichita. 

Five people, in all, developed listeriosis in Kansas after eating products from one production line at the Blue Bell creamery in Brenham, Texas, the Associated Press reported.

The CDC said the listeria isolated from specimens taken from four of the five patients at Ascension Via Christi St. Francis hospital in Wichita matched strains from Blue Bell products obtained this year in South Carolina and Texas. 

The five patients became ill with listeriosis during their hospitalizations for unrelated causes between December 2013 and January 2015. Three of them died.

Listeriosis is a life-threatening infection caused by eating food contaminated with bacteria called Listeria monocytogenes, the CDC said. The disease primarily affects pregnant women and their newborns, older adults, and people with immune systems weakened by cancer, cancer treatments, or other serious conditions.