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24 Ill in Colorado Raw Milk Outbreak

An E. coli O157:H7 and campylobacter outbreak linked to raw goat milk from a Colorado dairy is now tied to 24 illnesses, including two children who required hospitalization, according to the Boulder County Public Health Department.

The outbreak has been linked to Billy Goat Dairy in Longmont, near Boulder, Colorado. Lab results found both Campylobacter and E. coli in victims. State and local health investigators visited the Longmont dairy last week to collect samples from the goats and are in the process of contacting the 43 households that participate in the dairy’s goat-share program.

Colorado state does not allow the retail sale of raw milk.

“We strongly advise residents to avoid consuming any raw milk or milk products,” said Murielle Romine with Boulder health department. “It can be extremely dangerous, particularly for young children and people with weakened immune systems.”

The outbreak comes just as another raw milk dairy in New York had its license to sell raw milk suspended due to positive tests for both Campylobacter and Listeria monocytogenes.

Breese Hollow Dairy, located in Hoosick, New York, holds a permit to sell raw milk at the farm, but a routine sample of the milk, by the New York State Department of Agriculture, tested positive for Listeria monocytogenes and Campylobacter last week.

According to analysis by Food Poison Journal, in the last six months, raw milk caused 11 outbreaks of Campylobacter, Salmonella, and E. coli O157:H7 in 9 different states, including Washington, Utah, Minnesota, Nevada, Pennsylvania, New York, Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois. 

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