News Release – Raw milk recall and quarantine at Fresno County dairy

Raw milk products produced by Organic Pastures of Fresno County are the subject of a statewide recall and quarantine order announced by California State Veterinarian Dr. Annette Whiteford.

Under the recall, all Organic Pastures raw dairy products with the exception of cheese aged a minimum of 60 days are to be pulled immediately from retail shelves and consumers are strongly urged to dispose of any products remaining in their refrigerators. Until further notice, Organic Pastures may not produce raw milk products for the retail market. The order also affects Organic Pastures raw butter, raw cream, raw colostrum, and a raw product labeled “Qephor.”

The quarantine order came following a notification from the California Department of Public Health of a cluster of five children who were infected, from August through October, with the same strain of E. coli O157:H7.  These children are residents of Contra Costa, Kings, Sacramento, and San Diego counties.  Interviews with the families indicate that the only common reported food exposure is unpasteurized (raw) milk from Organic Pastures dairy. Three of the five children were hospitalized with hemolytic uremic syndrome, a serious condition that may lead to kidney failure. There have been no deaths. Surveys indicate that only about three percent of the public report drinking raw milk in any given week so finding 100% of these children drank raw milk and the absence of other common foods or animal exposures indicates the Organic Pastures raw milk is the likely source of their infection.

While laboratory samples of Organic Pastures raw milk have not detected E. coli 0157:H7 contamination, epidemiologic data collected by the California Department of Public Health link the illnesses with Organic Pastures raw milk.

The great majority of milk consumed in California is pasteurized. Raw milk is not pasteurized. Pasteurization is a process that kills harmful bacteria. In California, state law requires that raw milk and raw milk products shall bear the following warning on the label: “Warning – raw (unpasteurized) milk and raw milk dairy products may contain disease-causing micro-organisms. Persons at highest risk of disease from these organisms include newborns and infants; the elderly; pregnant women; those taking corticosteroids, antibiotics or antacids; and those having chronic illnesses or other conditions that weaken their immunity.”

Symptoms of E. coli O157:H7 infection may include abdominal cramps and diarrhea which is often bloody. Most infected people recover within a week; however, some may develop complications that require hospitalization. Young children and the elderly are at highest risk for a potentially life-threatening complication known as hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which includes kidney failure. People who develop symptoms of E. coli O157:H7 infection after consuming unpasteurized milk or milk products should consult their health care provider. Physicians who have patients suspected of having HUS or E. coli O157:H7 infections should report them to the local health department.

CDFA milk and dairy foods safety experts have begun a complete inspection at
Organic Pastures dairy – of all facets of operations, from the cows to the bottling plant. Before the quarantine may be lifted, the facility must meet all sanitation requirements under state law. Additionally, raw milk products will be tested to ensure compliance with regulatory standards.

 

 

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2 Responses to News Release – Raw milk recall and quarantine at Fresno County dairy

  1. chris kazaam says:

    Organic Pastures Raw Dairy & Claravale Farms is forced to put the scary notice about the “dangers” of drinking raw unheated milk on their bottles…… not to PROTECT THE PUBLIC, but to PROTECT THE PASTEURIZED(FAKE) MILK industry.
    For thousands of years, “Man” has enjoyed raw, and most likely unrefrigerated milk, without much worry of glandular or organ failure, as most government & industry “health” officials scare you into believing these days. Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome cannot be CAUSEd by consumption of natural bacteria or even the dreaded E. coli 0157:H7(does not exist in nature, it is a mutagenic form of bacteria created via industrial chemical and heat treatments, another issue). Bacteria don’t cause disease. They detoxify the body, and some people(I’ve been waiting 9 years) experiencing symptoms like diarrhea etc. BUT…..the symptoms of kidney failure found in “weak” children and the elderly is due TO TREATMENT WITH PHARMACEUTICAL DRUGS(or other intervening methods), not the consumption of unpasteurized milk. If humans had been losing their kidneys to raw milk, they would’ve given up on the idea long before Louis Pasteur came up with the industry-friendly concept of heat-treatmeant (to improve shelf life of bad wine, canned spoiled tomato sauces etc) 130 years ago.

    Requiring the retailers to pull all of Organic Pastures’ raw milk from the shelves interferes with the SUPPOSED right of Americans to choice of diet. “Health” officials would use the term “better safe than sorry” to justify the wholesale removal of natural grass-(non-hormone) – fed raw milk from the retail shelves. Most likely they mean SORRY for us raw dairy lovers and SAFER for the government-enforced monopoly of the pasteurized fake milk industry over the shelves of every market that is brave enough to even try selling raw milk(unlike Whole Foods).

    If the government REALLY cared about our health, they’d put a label on every pasteurized carton of fake milk that says:”drinking this slop will give you or your children colic, rashes, brittle bones, rank bowel movements, and will play a role in a variety of health problems, including prostate cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, atherosclerosis, anemia, MS, leukemia and ovarian cancer.”

    I support the FAMILY FARM of Bruce McCafee up @ Organic Pastures. I think he runs an operation that I trust as a backup option in the event my current source of raw dairy is interrupted. Unlike most Americans, I am fortunate enough to be able to procure old-world, creamy, HIGH bacteria – rich dairy through a legal food club and am not subject to as MANY “whims” of aggressive fascist “health” officials(unless you count last july’s 2nd illegal RAID of another food club in Venice, CA by a myriad of govt. agencies)….. which makes me wonder about the last Planting Seeds blog re: “food security.” What a sham.

  2. Kurt says:

    Chris:

    I’m concerned your logic is flawed; let’s hope you believe in chlorinated drinking water.

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