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

Food Safety Alert

June 06, 2008

Jessica A. Chittenden

Consumer Alert - E. Coli O157:H7 Contamination in Raw Cow’s Milk

New York State Agriculture Commissioner Patrick Hooker today warned consumers in  Western New York not to consume "unpasteurized" raw cow’s milk from Elizabeth S. Neadow d/b/a/ Teacup Farm due to possible E. coli O157:H7 contamination.

Elizabeth S. Neadow d/b/a Teacup Farm, located at 2278 Johnson Creek Rd., Barker, NY 14012 holds a Department permit to legally sell raw cow and raw goat 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 sample of cow’s milk, taken by an inspector from the Division of Milk Control and Dairy Services on June 2, 2008, was subsequently tested by the Department’s Food Laboratory and discovered to be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7.  On June 6, 2008, test results were confirmed and the producer is prohibited from selling raw cow’s milk until subsequent sampling indicates that the product is free of pathogens.  No pathogens were found in the raw goat milk sample taken on the same date.

E. coli 0157:H7 is a potentially deadly bacterium that can cause bloody diarrhea and dehydration.  The very young, seniors, and persons with compromised immune systems are the most susceptible to foodborne illness.  Anyone concerned about an illness should contact a physician.

Raw milk does not provide the protection of pasteurization, which eliminates all pathogenic bacteria, including E. coli O157:H7.  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 Elizabeth S. Neadow d/b/a Teacup Farm operation.

2008 Consumer Alerts