September 16, 2019

Udder Milk in New Jersey Ordered to Stop Illegally Selling Raw Milk

Udder Milk, a home delivery company in New Jersey, has been ordered to stop illegally selling raw milk in that state by the New Jersey Department of Health (DOH). Officials were notified on October 23, 2017 that a New Jersey woman had been sickened with a Brucella infection; the strain was identified as RB51.  She has since recovered. Brucella RB51 is a rare type of that pathogenic bacteria that can cause serious illness.

Raw milk Brucella outbreak

Government officials are investigating to see if her illness is connected to another Brucella outbreak linked to K-Bar Dairy in Texas that occurred earlier this year. This summer, people in seven states were reportedly sickened with symptoms of a Brucella infection, although most were not formally diagnosed. The USDA and CDC are joining the New Jersey DOH to determine if K-Bar Dairy is one of the suppliers of raw milk that Udder Milk uses.

The CDC issued a warning about this outbreak this September, stating that people in more than 800 households across the country purchased raw milk from K-Bar Dairy. It is illegal in the United States to sell raw milk or raw milk products across state lines.

One woman in Texas was formally diagnosed with a Brucella RB51 infection this summer after drinking milk produced by K-Bar Dairy. Officials tested milk from that facility and found that two cows were infected with Brucella RB51, which “supports the conclusion that these cows are a source of RB51 contamination of the dairy’s raw milk,” according to the CDC warning.

In that CDC statement, officials said that anyone who consumed raw milk or raw milk products from K-Bar Dairy from June 1 to August 7, 2017  should start on a course of antibiotic treatments because of this risk. Brucella can cause serious lifelong, chronic illness. Long term complications of a Brucella infection can include arthritis, heart problems, enlargement of the spleen, and nervous system disorders.

State Epidemiologist Dr. Tina Tan said in a statement, “It is illegal in New Jersey to sell or distribute raw milk or products made from raw milk, such as yogurt, soft cheese and ice cream. People should know that, in general, unpasteurized milk may contain dangerous bacteria and those who have become ill after consuming raw milk products should immediately consult a medical professional. Pasteurized milk and dairy products bought commercially are considered safe for consumption, because they are heated to a high temperature that kills harmful bacteria.”

The symptoms of a Brucella infection include fever, sweats, chills, weight loss, headache, fatigue, and muscle and joint pain. These symptoms can appear up to six months after exposure to the bacteria and can disappear, only to reappear later.

Anyone who drank raw milk from K-Bar Dairy should monitor themselves for these symptoms, especially because of the long incubation period. These symptoms can vary from person to person, and this infection can be difficult to diagnose.

Bad Bug Law Team | Pritzker Law Firm

If you or a loved one have been sickened with a Brucella infection after drinking raw milk, contact the lawyers from our experienced legal team for help at 1-888-377-8900.

The noted law firm Pritzker Hageman helps people who have been sickened by contaminated food protect their legal rights and get answers and compensation. Our lawyers help patients and families of children in personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits against dairies, distributors, schools, retailers, grocery stores, food processors, restaurants, and others. Attorney Fred Pritzker recently won $7.5 million for a young client whose kidneys failed because he developed hemolytic uremic syndrome after an E. coli infection. You should know that class action lawsuits may not be appropriate for outbreak victims because each individual case is different.

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