Organic Pastures Raw Milk & Colostrum E. coli Outbreak (2006)In September of 2006, the California Department of Health Services (CDHS) began investigating an apparent E. coli O157:H7 outbreak among six children; five had tested positive for an indistinguishable strain of E. coli, and two had developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS).
During the CDHS investigation, interviews with case-patients revealed that five of the six children reported consuming raw milk or colostrum sold by Organic Pastures dairy in the days before becoming ill with symptoms of E. coli infection. The sixth child did not report consuming Organic Pastures products; however, that child’s family members had consumed the products before the child became ill with E. coli.
The California Department of Food and Agriculture conducted an environmental investigation, collecting fecal samples from dairy cows at Organic Pastures. E. coli O157:H7 was isolated from five of the samples, and although the PFGE patterns differed from the pattern associated with the outbreak CDHS ultimately concluded that “the source of infection for these children was likely raw milk products produced by the dairy.”
Organic Pastures Raw Milk Linked to 2011 E. coli Outbreak
In November of 2011, California public health officials announced that an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak among 5 California children, 3 with HUS, had been traced to Organic Pastures raw milk products.