Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor | Richard A. Ball, Commissioner

Food Safety Alert

October 12, 2007

Jessica A. Chittenden

Listeria Contamination In Raw Milk

New York State Agriculture Commissioner Patrick Hooker today warned consumers in the Onondaga County, New York area not to consume "unpasteurized" raw farm milk from the C. Thomas Trinder farm due to possible Listeria contamination.

The Trinder farm located at 2303 State RT 91, Fabius, New York 13063 holds a Department permit to legally sell raw milk at the farm. Samples are taken monthly and tested by the Department to determine if the raw milk is free of pathogenic bacteria.

A routine sample of the milk, taken by an inspector from the Division of Milk Control and Dairy Services on October 1, 2007, was subsequently tested by the Departmentís Food Laboratory and discovered to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. On October 5, 2007, the producer was notified of a preliminary positive test result and volunteered to suspend raw milk sales until the sample results were confirmed. Test results were confirmed on October 11, 2007 and the producer is prohibited from selling raw milk until subsequent sampling indicates that the product is free of pathogens.

Listeria contaminated product could cause Listeriosis, a disease that usually causes mild flu-like symptoms in healthy individuals; however in immune-compromised individuals, meningitis and blood poisoning can occur. Pregnant women are also considered a high-risk group, as Listeriosis can also result in stillbirths.

It is important to note that raw milk does not provide the protection of pasteurization, which eliminates all pathogenic bacteria, including Listeria. Producers who sell raw milk to consumers must have a permit to do so from the Department, must sell directly to consumers on the farm where the milk is produced and must post a notice at the point of sale indicating that raw milk does not provide the protection of pasteurization. Farms with permits to sell raw milk are inspected by the Department monthly.

To date, no illnesses are known by the Department to be associated with product from the Trinder far

2007 Consumer Alerts