June 20, 2024

Ten Sick from Campylobacter Linked to CA Organic Pastures Raw Milk Products; Recall Ordered

The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) has announced the recall of raw milk products made at Organic Pastures Dairy of Fresno County. At least ten people have been sickened with Campylobacter infections from January through April 30, 2012. All reported consuming Organic Pastures raw milk products before they got sick. Campylobacter has been found in the raw cream; this was confirmed by the state labs.

Raw milkThe patient age range is nine months to 38 years. The medium age is 11.5 years, with six patients under the age of 18. Patients live in Fresno, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Luis Obispo and Santa Clara counties. None of the patients have been hospitalized; there have been no deaths.

Symptoms of Campylobacter food poisoning include diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever. Some people who become ill can develop Guillain-Barré Syndrome that can cause weakness and paralysis.

Consumers are urged to throw out any Organic Pastures raw milk, raw skim milk (non-fat), raw cream, and raw butter products. Retailers are asked to pull those products from their shelves. In addition to the recall, the dairy is under quarantine, according to veterinarian Dr. Annette Whiteford.

This is not the first time Organic Pastures products have been linked to illness and the dairy quarantined. In November 2011, the dairy was put under quarantine when cases of E. coli 0157:H7 foodborne illnesses were linked to the dairy. Five children were sickened in that case. And in 2008, a quarantine order was issued when Campylobacter was found in raw cream made at the dairy.


  1. Nigerian Food says

    This decision of California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) is really a good news, this may reduce the cases of food poison. It was too much necessity to set up a control over dairy products.

  2. Willow Morningsky says

    Linda, I have drunk nothing but whole raw milk from Organic Pastures Dairy every single day of the January to April time sequence and have experienced not one single adverse affect. These ten people about whom you are reporting have most definitely been careless in some other, unrelated aspect of their lives. Their illnesses have most definitely NOT come from drinking Organic Pastures Dairy raw milk.

    The dairy animals at Organic Pastures are treated with more humanity and kindness than at any other dairy. And the product they produce is of a higher quality nutritional value than any other available. It just is not fair, nor intelligent to continue to contrive false attacks against this high quality business which is the foundation of our democratic American lifestyle. Please exert an effort to do more thorough research and be more accurate and responsible in your journalistic endeavors. This kind of untruthful reporting can result in driving desirable and reputable businesses out of business and contribute to our desperate economic situation in our beloved country.

    • Linda Larsen says

      Well, I’m glad you didn’t get sick. But the logical fallacy in your statement is the small sample size n=1. Just because you didn’t get sick doesn’t mean others will not. You may want to read our article How Bacteria in Raw Milk Affects Some But Not Others, which explains why not everyone who consumes a contaminated product is sickened. I hardly think that a nine-month-old baby was “careless” and got sick.

      Campylobacter was found in the dairy’s cream. That is a scientific fact. Tests are now underway to see if that bacteria has the same DNA as the bacteria found in the patient’s stool samples. We’ll report what the state finds.

      And it doesn’t matter how well a cow is treated; they still shed bacteria. In fact, perfectly healthy cows will shed E. coli, Salmonella, Campylobacter, and Listeria that get into milk.

      We are reporting what the California Department of Health has found. That’s all.

      • The 10 cases of illness reported drinking OP milk, but as stated , only the 1 cream sample tested positive from the CFDA. Sounds fishy already..

        OP does its own independant lab testing and continually returns negative results. Being the largest raw producer in the US, they cant afford not to be proactive about safety.
        This has happened to Organic Pastures before and in the end all cases have had no link to Organic Pastures.
        The State still does not know the origin of ANY of the cases to this date.

        My family and many people we know dont live in the country and have been consuming raw milk from our local markets for years without any illnesses whatsoever. We made the switch when we discovered conventional milk in your local supermarket contains pus from continually infected cows fed poor toxic inappropriate diets that need large amounts of antibiotics to keep them from dying. Organic Pastures produces raw milk from cattle that are allowed free access to graze grass like cows are supposed to in nature, not fed corn and soybeans which are a cheap substitutes for their natural diet and health wise, the equivalent of a human eating McDonalds daily. This is why pasteurization is needed so badly, major industry milk is toxic.

        If no one was hospitalized for this recall, just how do these folks find out they have campylobacter virus? If youre sick enough to bother notifying the state FDA dont you think you would see a doctor first?

        Sounds like major industry monopoly upto its corrupt methods for thwarting competition once again..

        • Linda Larsen says

          I suggest you read How Bacteria In Raw Milk Sickens Some But Not Others for some answers. It doesn’t take a lot of bacteria to make someone sick, especially a nine-month-old baby who is one of the victims.

          The bacteria in that “1 cream sample” can make a lot of people sick, especially if that person is in a high risk group: the very young, the elderly, and those with compromised immune systems. Also, even if Organic Pastures tests every single batch of raw milk from every single cow every single time, bacteria can form into clusters in the milk that tests will miss. Testing is no guarantee of safety.

          Furthermore, the November 2011 outbreak of E. coli 0157:H7 in five young children was an exact DNA match, using pulsed field gel electrophoresis, to E. coli 0157:H7 found at the farm. That is legal proof that those illnesses were caused by Organic Pastures.

          A patient does not have to be hospitalized to be tested for a foodborne illness. Physicians will take stool samples of patients who present with the symptoms of food poisoning. Those samples are cultured to find the pathogens that caused the illness. When a foodborne pathogen is found in a stool sample, doctors are required to notify the state and FDA about the illness. When two or more unrelated people have the same bacteria in their stool samples, an outbreak is declared. And the state starts an investigation. Which is exactly what happened in this case.

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