More e.coli controversy around Organic Pastures dairy and raw milk products

From David E. Gumpert, on the Complete Patient blog:

“Controversy seems to be lurking in the supposed manner in which two of the children became ill from E.coli O157:H7 in OPDC milk. In a comment following my previous post, McAfee stated, “We do know that at least two of the most sickened children did not drink raw milk,….but drank OPDC after it had been ‘fermented and cultured with store bought Kefir cultures ‘ ” There is nothing in the CDPH report letter that details the circumstances of how the milk was consumed by the sickened children.

But in an email today to Stephen Beam, head of the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s dairy division, McAfee requested that publicity coming out of that agency explain his understanding about how the milk was used by a customer. “In all fairness, it is crucial that your department and CDPH both include in your press releases, that two of the hospitalized and most sickened children, did not drink raw milk at all. They instead drank a homemade brew of cultured raw milk with added cultures in their own containers and the end product contained millions of bacteria per ml. They also ate cultured vegetables that were soaked in raw whey collected from this cultured Kefir.

That is an entirely different story….than two sickened kids drinking fresh raw milk…I would be very disappointed in the accuracy of the report if it did not include that the two most sickened kids drank a home cultured kefir and not our  fresh raw  milk.”

In the aftermath of the outbreaks over two months in late summer and early fall, OPDC was shut down for four weeks, and then, after it re-opened, prohibited from selling colostrum. It’s not clear if the colostrum prohibition is related to the finding of the rare shiga-producing pathogen in the colostrum.

I don’t think we’ve heard the end of this story quite yet. On the matter of fermenting the milk to make kefir or yogurt, lots of consumers do that. Is McAfee suggesting people shouldn’t do that, or that it should be done “at your own risk”? Just when you think you’ve heard the last of the issues surrounding raw milk safety, a new one rears its head..”

Read it all on The Complete Patient blog.


Filed under News

5 responses to “More e.coli controversy around Organic Pastures dairy and raw milk products

  1. There is no controversy. Food makes people sick sometimes. End of story.

    The only reason this is in the news is that there are evil governments that are working to implement a global UN agenda to curtain your God given right to choose what you and your family eats.

  2. miro

    it does raise questions about protocols in food safety. We are looking at shrink wrap sealers, bottle dating, record keeping, and sample storage as means to increase our potential to answer to the public. Another potential exists is batch testing. If every batch gets tested it strengthens the protocol and assurance to the cow share membership. How to go about doing that for various Cow Share Operations is another matter. It may also suggest that cow share members be advised about handling protocols themselves. In fact it might be well suited for cow share operations to work together to create such a Cow share Owner handling protocol document and delivery system. One group is working on a booklet to share how to care for milk as it ages and what to do with it i.e. cheese making yogurt, kefir, and the like. Of course this does not speak to some of the other issues surrounding this case and context. Like people often get sick from how they handle food, no matter what food it may be. Being able to answer questions and actively be cautious and aware of the risks in an articulate manner with good record keeping is helpful in the event that the authorities should ever be at the door, is all.

    • John

      Miro. All good, but I assume preventing fecal contamination is still your highest (but not stated) priority. From reading the Complete Patient it seems that at OPDC there was traffic (people, carts, buckets), from the maternity/calf area into the milk room as a possible mechanism of bacterial transfer. Totally isolating the milk room is difficult for on-farm processors, but is essential to good hygiene, I think.

  3. you’re still not getting it : the authorities were “at the door” well before any untoward incidents happened. It suits the propagandists to draw attention to gnaw-away on micro-details, so as to deflect understanding from the context. We live in red fascism, in which outfits like the FDA, BC Health Authorities, the CFIA and all the rest of the alphabet soup quangoes, are oriented to what suits the corporations. The way the same agencies treat corporations whose products sicken thousands and kill hundreds per year, says it all.

    in this round of the assault upon OPD, the public has been sucked-in to accepting DNA gel phosporesis matching as though it’s infallible. Far from it. False positives happen all the time

    2 children reported ill, out of 60,000 portions per week of raw milk delivered, make it far more logical they got sick from something other than milk from Organic Pastures, and that the so-called “link” to Organic Pastures calf-pen, comes in very handy to people who have proved they’re determined to shut down REAL MILK any way they can. Has the govt. ever lied to you before?

  4. Glad I am not the only one to see it this way Gordon. Thanks for the verification.

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