Consumers in Sullivan County, NY, and surrounding areas are being warned not to consume unpasteurized raw milk from the Richard Dirie Farm due to possible Listeria contamination. The farm is located at 1345 Shandelee Rd., Livingston Manor, NY, about 100 miles southwest of Albany. Officials with the New York State Department of Agriculture & Markets said Tuesday they were not aware of any illnesses associated with this product. A sample of the milk was collected by an inspector from the Division of Milk Control and Dairy Services on Oct. 21, 2014, was subsequently tested by the department’s Food Laboratory and discovered to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. On Oct. 23, 2014, the producer was notified of a preliminary positive test result, and he volunteered to suspend raw milk sales until the sample results were confirmed. Further laboratory testing, completed on Oct. 28, 2014, confirmed the presence of Listeria monocytogenes in the raw milk sample. The producer is now prohibited from selling raw milk until subsequent sampling indicates that the product is free of harmful bacteria. Listeria monocytogenes is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, cancer patients, elderly people and others with weakened immune systems. Although otherwise healthy persons may suffer only short-term, flu-like symptoms such as high fever, severe headaches, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, Listeria can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women. The officials said that it’s important to note that raw milk does not provide the protection of pasteurization, which eliminates all pathogenic bacteria, including Listeria.