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Foodborne Illness Outbreaks

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Cow Share Link to Raw Milk 2005 E. coli Outbreak

On December 12, 2005, the Washington State Department of Agriculture’s (WSDA) Food Safety Program (FSP) was notified that the Washington Department of Health had received a report of a positive E. coli O157:H7 test in a patient from the Vancouver, Washington, area. WSDA FSP was further notified that the Clark County Health Department had determined that several E. coli cases had been caused by the consumption of raw milk produced by Dee Creek Farm in Woodland, Washington.

Prior to the December outbreak, WSDA had learned of Dee Creek Farm’s cow-share program, and had ordered the farm to cease the dispensing, giving, trading, or selling of milk or to meet requirements for selling milk that had been laid out by WSDA. The letter was sent in August 2005, and WSDA received a response from Dee Creek Farm in September 2005, stating that the farm was not selling milk but that the farm’s owners intended to meet requirements for a milk producer and retail raw milk processor in the future.

During the December investigation into the E. coli outbreak, WSDA noted several milk processing violations that would have been addressed during the licensing process had Dee Creek applied for the license. Among the violations were the following:

• No animal health testing documentation for brucellosis and tuberculosis or health permits
• Beef cattle contact with wild elk
• No water or waste water system available at milk barn for milking operations or cleaning
• No hand washing sinks available for cleaning and sanitizing
• No bacteriological test results available for the farm’s well-water system
• Mud/manure with standing water at the entrance to the milk barn parlor
• Milking bucket in direct contact with unclean surfaces during milk production
• Multiple instances providing for the opportunity for cross-contamination
• No separate milk processing area from domestic kitchen
• No raw milk warning label provided on containers

In addition, sample testing confirmed the presence of E. coli O157:H7 in two milk samples provided by Dee Creek Farm and in five environmental samples taken from Dee Creek Farm milk-barn areas by investigators.  See WSDOH Report.

When its investigation was completed, WSDA had identified eighteen people who had consumed raw milk purchased from Dee Creek Farm through the cow-share program and developed symptoms consistent with E. coli infection. Five Clark County, Washington, children were hospitalized, with two developing hemolytic uremic syndrome and requiring critical care and life support for kidney failure as a result of their E. coli infections.

A 2008 Raw Milk Campylobacter Outbreak with Devistating Results

Picture 3(6)On October 2, 2008, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) issued a report linking an outbreak of Campylobacter illnesses to unpasteurized milk from Alexandre Eco Farms Dairy. The report was the result of an investigation commenced on July 14, 2008, when Dr. Thomas Martinelli, the County Health Officer for Del Norte County, California reported four cases of laboratory confirmed Campylobacter infections and five additional cases of diarrhea in Del Norte County residents. Eight of the original nine sick individuals were members of the Alexandre Eco Farms “cow-leasing” program. Eight of these individuals had consumed milk produced on the farm. The ninth sick individual worked with cattle on the Alexandre Eco Farms Dairy. One of the eight individuals who were sick, Mari Tardiff, had already been hospitalized with Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), following the onset of acute gastroenteritis after consumption of the milk.

As part of the investigation, health department officials retrieved a refrigerated carton of partially consumed Alexandre Eco Farms milk from Mari Tardiff’s home. Mari had consumed a portion of the milk before her illness. The specimen tested positive for Campylobacter jejuni DNA using a test called polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Testing indicated that multiple strains of Campylobacter jejuni were present in the milk. Del Norte County officials eventually identified 16 cases of Campylobacter jejuni associated with the outbreak. Fifteen of those were persons who consumed milk from Alexandre Eco Farms Dairy. The 16th case was the farm employee. CDPH and Del Norte county officials concluded that “the available epidemiologic and laboratory data support the conclusion that this cluster of acute diarrheal illness in Del Norte County was an outbreak of C. jejuni infections caused by consumption of unpasteurized milk from [Alexandre Eco Farms Dairy.]”

The causal link between Alexandre Eco Farms Dairy and Mari’s illness was so clear, and her injuries so remarkable, that the physicians that treated her published a report on her case in the medical journal. “Investigation of the First Case of Guillain-Barre Syndrome Associated with Consumption of Unpasteurized Milk – California, 2008.” Amy K. Earon, T. Martinelli, W. Miller, C. Parker, R. Mandrell, D. Vugia. The authors explained the laboratory methods used in investigating Mari’s illness:

We reviewed the patient’s medical record and interviewed her husband to assess her symptoms and exposures. We used polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and multilocus sequence typing (MLST) to test a six-week old unpasteurized milk sample, obtained from the cow leasing-program and partially consumed by the patient, for genes encoding the bacterial membrane component lipooligosaccharide (LOS) in GBS-associated Campylobacter jenuni.

In addition to the DNA testing, the authors also tested Mari’s blood for anti-bodies to GBS. The authors then explained that the PCR and MLST testing of the milk detected Campylobacter jejuni gene. In addition, the blood test was positive for anti-bodies that indicated the presence of GBS. The authors concluded, “Combined laboratory and epidemiologic evidence established the first reported association between GBS and unpasteurized milk consumption.”

Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Campylobacter outbreaks. The Campylobacter lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Campylobacter and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $600 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our Campylobacter lawyers have litigated Campylobacter cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of sources, such as raw milk and municipal water.

Jewel Deli Salmonella Outbreak Lawsuit Filed by Marler Clark

JO-LOGO_StackedwCircle_CMYKIn June 2104 Cook County Department of Public Health (CCDPH) and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) investigated an outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium among persons who had consumed chicken or deli products from Jewel Osco, a grocery store located in Tinley Park, Illinois.  In total 19 case patients were identified.  Fourteen patients were laboratory confirmed with Salmonella Typhimurium, five patients were considered to be “probable” cases. Dates of illness onset ranged from May 9 to June 11. Two additional case-patients who were laboratory confirmed with Salmonella Typhimurium were identified with symptom on June 15 and June 25. They both had exposure to a previously identified household member will illness associated with this outbreak. Eight outbreak associated case patients required hospitalization and three others visited their physician’s office.

Genetic testing by Pulsed Field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE) of isolates cultured from stool specimens submitted by case patients was performed by the Illinois Department of Public Health Laboratory.  The outbreak strain was identified as PulseNet Pattern Identification Number JPXX01.0324.

Environmental health staff from CCDPH and the Tinley Park Village Inspector conducted an on-site investigation at the Jewel Osco deli on June 11, 2014.  The deli was closed for six hours for cleaning and disinfection. All food items were discarded.  Food handlers were excluded from work pending negative stool screening tests for Salmonella. Two food handlers were positive for Salmonella Typhimurium strain JPXX01.0324.  No leftover foods from the deli or from homes of case-patients were tested.

CCDPH concluded that an outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium JPXX01.0324 occurred at Jewel Osco deli. Outbreak associated cases consumed deli products or chicken from the store. After the June 11 intervention by health officials, no other cases were reported.

Marler Clark represents three victims.

Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Salmonella outbreaks. The Salmonella lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Salmonella and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $600 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our Salmonella lawyers have litigated Salmonella cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of foods, such as cantaloupe, tomatoes, ground turkey, salami, sprouts, cereal, peanut butter, and food served in restaurants. The law firm has brought Salmonella lawsuits against such companies as Cargill, ConAgra, Peanut Corporation of America, Sheetz, Taco Bell, Subway and Wal-Mart.

Grass Fed Ground Beef with E. coli Lawsuit by Marler Clark

Screen-Shot-2014-08-15-at-8.11.15-AM-300x180FSIS was notified of an investigation of E. coli O157:H7 illnesses on June 25, 2014. Working in conjunction with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), FSIS determined that there is a link between ground beef purchased at Whole Foods Market and this illness cluster. Based on epidemiologic investigation, 3 case-patients have been identified in Massachusetts with illness onset dates ranging from June 13, 2014 to June 25, 2014. While the onset of illnesses was in June, on August 13, 2014, additional laboratory results provided linkages between the 3 MA case-patients and ground beef purchased from Whole Foods. Traceback investigation indicated that all 3 case-patients consumed ground beef purchased from 2 Whole Foods Market prior to illness onset. One child died of hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS).

Whole Foods Market locations, South Weymouth, Mass. and Newton, Mass., are recalling 368 pounds of ground beef products that may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced. 125 lbs. of the following ground beef products produced on June 8, 2014 at the Newton, Mass. locations are subject to recall:

“BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93% LEAN 7% FAT” with SKU 90013

  • “BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93% LEAN 7% FAT FAMILY PACK” with SKU 90247
  • “BEEF SIRLOIN Patty 93% LEAN / 7% Fat” with SKU 90088
  • “BEEF GROUND 93% LEAN / 7% FAT” with SKU 90035
  • “BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93% LEAN 7% FAT patty FAMILY PACK” with SKU 52179
  • “BEEF GROUND 85% LEAN 15% FAT” with SKU 90004
  • “BEEF GROUND 85% LEAN 15% FAT FAMILY PACK” with SKU 90037
  • “BEEF GROUND PATTY 90% LEAN GRASS FED” with SKU 96363
  • “BEEF GROUND PATTY 90% LEAN GRASS FED, Value Pack” with SKU 52162
  • “BEEF GROUND 90% LEAN GRASS FED” with SKU 95997
  • “BEEF GROUND 90% LEAN GRASS FED, Value pack” with SKU 52190
  • “BEEF GROUND 85 15 GRASS FED” with SKU 95195
  • “BEEF GROUND 85 15 PATTIES GRASS FED” with SKU 95196
  • “BEEF BURGER GRASS FED GOURMET FEATURED” with SKU 52871

170 lbs. of the following ground beef products produced on June 10, 2014 at the Newton, Mass. locations are subject to recall:

“BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93% LEAN 7% FAT” with SKU 90013

  • “BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93% LEAN 7% FAT FAMILY PACK” with SKU 90247
  • “BEEF SIRLOIN Patty 93% LEAN / 7% Fat” with SKU 90088
  • “BEEF GROUND 93% LEAN / 7% FAT” with SKU 90035
  • “BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93% LEAN 7% FAT patty FAMILY PACK” with SKU 52179
  • “BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93/7 PATTIES NE” with SKU 90199
  • “BEEF GROUNDSIRLOIN 93/7 NE” with SKU 95051
  • “BEEF GROUND 85% LEAN 15% FAT” with SKU 90004
  • “BEEF GROUND 85% LEAN 15% FAT FAMILY PACK” with SKU 90037
  • “BEEF GROUND PATTY 90% LEAN GRASS FED” with SKU 96363
  • “BEEF GROUND PATTY 90% LEAN GRASS FED, Value Pack” with SKU 52162
  • “BEEF GROUND 90% LEAN GRASS FED” with SKU 95997
  • “BEEF GROUND 90% LEAN GRASS FED, Value pack” with SKU 52190
  • “BEEF GROUND 85 15 GRASS FED” with SKU 95195
  • “BEEF GROUND 85 15 PATTIES GRASS FED” with SKU 95196
  • “BEEF BURGER GRASS FED GOURMET FEATURED” with SKU 52871

73 lbs. of the following ground beef products produced on June 21, 2014 at the South Weymouth, Mass. location are subject to recall:

“BEEF GROUND PATTY 90% LEAN GRASS FED” with SKU 96363

  • “BEEF GROUND PATTY 90% LEAN GRASS FED, Value Pack” with SKU 52162
  • “BEEF GROUND 90% LEAN GRASS FED” with SKU 95997
  • “BEEF GROUND 90% LEAN GRASS FED, Value pack” with SKU 52190
  • “BEEF GROUND 85 15 GRASS FED” with SKU 95195
  • “BEEF GROUND 85 15 PATTIES GRASS FED” with SKU 95196
  • “BEEF BURGER GRASS FED GOURMET FEATURED” with SKU 52871
  • “BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93% Lean 7% fat” with SKU 90013
  • “BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93% LEAN 7% FAT FAMILY PACK” with SKU 90247
  • “BEEF SIRLOIN Patty 93% LEAN / 7% Fat” with SKU 90088
  • “BEEF GROUND 93% LEAN / 7% FAT” with SKU 90035
  • “BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93% LEAN 7% FAT patty FAMILY PACK” with SKU 52179
  • “BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93/7 PATTIES NE” with SKU 90199
  • “BEEF GROUND SIRLOIN 93/7 NE” with SKU 95051

Marler Clark filed suit on behalf of the family.

Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of E. coli outbreaks and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). The E. coli lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of E. coli and other foodborne illness infections and have recovered over $600 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our E. coli lawyers have litigated E. coli and HUS cases stemming from outbreaks traced to ground beef, raw milk, lettuce, spinach, sprouts, and other food products. The law firm has brought E. coli lawsuits against such companies as Jack in the Box, Dole, ConAgra, Cargill, and Jimmy John’s. We have proudly represented such victims as Brianne Kiner, Stephanie Smith and Linda Rivera.

Caramel Apple Listeria Lawsuit Filed by Marler Clark

map-02-12-2015The Outbreak:  The CDC reports thirty-five ill people included in this outbreak investigation were reported from 12 states: Arizona (5), California (3), Colorado (1), Minnesota (4), Missouri (5), Nevada (1), New Mexico (6), North Carolina (1), Texas (4), Utah (1), Washington (1), and Wisconsin (3). Illness onset dates ranged from October 17, 2014, to January 6, 2015. Eleven illnesses were associated with a pregnancy (occurred in a pregnant woman or her newborn infant). One fetal loss was reported. Among people whose illnesses were not associated with a pregnancy, ages ranged from 7 to 92 years, with a median age of 62 years, and 33% were female. Three invasive illnesses (meningitis) occurred among otherwise healthy children aged 5–15 years. Thirty-four people were hospitalized, and listeriosis contributed to at least three of the seven deaths reported. The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) has identified 2 cases of listeriosis in Canada with the same PFGE patterns as seen in the US outbreak.

The Recall:  The FDA has traced the distribution of the caramel apples to Bidart Brothers from California. Although the Happy Apple Company and Merb’s Candies received apples from other growers, the FDA’s ongoing traceback investigation has confirmed that Bidart Brothers is the only apple grower that supplied apples to both companies.  Bidart Brothers apples have been the common denominator as the source of apples used in the production of caramel apples implicated in the latest illnesses and deaths.

  • Happy Apple reported that it received notice from Bidart Brothers, one of its apple suppliers to the Orosi, California facility, that there is a connection between this outbreak and the apples that they supplied to that facility.
  • California Snack Foods issued a voluntary recall of California Snack Foods brand caramel apples that they received from Bidart Brothers.
  • Pacific Coast Fruit announced last week that it was made aware that Bidart Brothers was recalling apples.  Happy Apples purchased apples from Bidart Brothers and Pacific Coast Fruit in turn distributed Happy Apples to Pacific Coast Fruit customers.
  • Merb’s Candies issued a recall of the Merb’s Candies brand Bionic Apples and Double Dipped Apples.  Bidart Brothers, who was one of Merb’s Candies apple suppliers, has initiated a recall.
  • Although no recall has been announced, Minnesota cases purchased caramel apples from Cub Foods, Kwik Trip, and Mike’s Discount Foods, which carried Carnival brand and Kitchen Cravings brand caramel apples.  These apples were produced by Brooks and supplied indirectly by Bidart Brothers.

The Lawsuit:  Marler Clark, the nation’s only law firm dedicated to representing victims of foodborne illness, has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Safeway Inc., in the Superior Court of Santa Cruz on behalf of James Raymond Frey, 87, and the estate of his deceased wife, Shirlee Jean Frey, 81, who died tragically on December 2, 2014 after consuming a Listeria-tainted caramel apple purchased at the Safeway in Felton, California. The case number is CISCV180721.  The complaint was amended to add in two additional parties – Happy Apple and Bidart Brothers.

The Bug:  Listeria monocytogenes is an organism that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women. Approximately 2,500 cases of listeriosis are estimated to occur in the U.S. each year. About 200 in every 1,000 cases result in death.

Marler Clark: Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Listeria outbreaks. The Listeria lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Listeria and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $600 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our Listeria lawyers have litigated Listeria cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of foods, such as caramel apples, cantaloupe, cheese, celery and milk.

Marler Clark Files Four E. coli Lawsuits in Evergreen “Sprout break”

080114-mapAccording to the CDC, as of August 1, 2014 a total of 19 persons infected with the outbreak strain of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O121 (STEC O121) were reported from six states.  The number of ill persons identified in each state was as follows: California (1), Idaho (3), Michigan (1), Montana (2), Utah (1), and Washington (11). 44% of ill persons were hospitalized. No ill persons developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), and no deaths were reported.

Epidemiology and traceback investigations conducted by local, state, and federal officials indicated that contaminated raw clover sprouts produced by Evergreen Fresh Sprouts, LLC of Idaho are the likely source of this outbreak.

The FDA also conducted an inspection of Evergreen Fresh Sprouts’ facility on May 22-23, 2014; May 27-30, 2014; and June 6, 2014. During the inspection, FDA investigators observed a number of unsanitary conditions, including condensate and irrigation water dripping from rusty valves; a rusty and corroded mung bean room watering system; tennis rackets that had scratches, chips, and frayed plastic” used to scoop mung bean sprouts; a pitchfork with corroded metal being used to transfer mung bean sprouts; and a squeegee with visible corroded metal and non-treated wood being used to agitate mung bean sprouts inside a soak vat.

Also, according to CDC, from April 12 to July 5, 2011, a total of 25 persons infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Enteritidis have been reported from five states. Results of the investigation indicate a link to eating alfalfa sprouts and spicy sprouts manufactured by Evergreen Fresh Sprouts. On July 1, 2011, Evergreen Fresh Sprouts LLC of Moyie Springs, Idaho, announced a recall of specific lots of alfalfa sprouts and spicy sprouts because these products have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.

Barfblog does a great job of tracking sprout outbreaks through 2012.  Outbreak Database carries on – through 2014.

Marler Clark filed two lawsuits in Washington and two in Idaho.

Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of E. coli outbreaks and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). The E. coli lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of E. coli and other foodborne illness infections and have recovered over $600 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our E. coli lawyers have litigated E. coli and HUS cases stemming from outbreaks traced to ground beef, raw milk, lettuce, spinach, sprouts, and other food products. The law firm has brought E. coli lawsuits against such companies as Jack in the Box, Dole, ConAgra, Cargill, and Jimmy John’s. We have proudly represented such victims as Brianne Kiner, Stephanie Smith and Linda Rivera.

Marler Clark Files E. coli Lawsuit Against Colorado Jimmy Johns

Screen-Shot-2014-12-05-at-7.00.22-PM1-300x223Late last year, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (“CDPHE”) and several Denver metropolitan area public health departments released a report of their investigation of an outbreak of Escherichia coli O157:H7 (E. coli O157:H7) that occurred in October 2013 at Denver Jimmy John’s restaurants.

Nine cases were identified, including 1 probable case and 8 laboratory-confirmed cases with matching pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and multiple-locus variable number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA) patterns from E. coli O157:H7 isolated from stool. One young woman developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). All 9 cases reported eating sandwiches at Denver-area Jimmy John’s locations in early October 2013.

The outbreak investigation consisted of case finding and interviews, 2 separate case-control studies, environmental investigations, produce traceback, and laboratory testing. The results of this investigation indicate that consumption of Jimmy John’s sandwiches containing cucumbers imported from Mexico was the likely cause of the outbreak. As of the date of this report, no other cases of E. coli O157:H7 with the PFGE pattern combination seen in this outbreak were reported in Colorado.  See PowerPoint PDF.

Marler Clark filed suit on behalf of the HUS victim.

Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of E. coli outbreaks and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). The E. coli lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of E. coli and other foodborne illness infections and have recovered over $600 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our E. coli lawyers have litigated E. coli and HUS cases stemming from outbreaks traced to ground beef, raw milk, lettuce, spinach, sprouts, and other food products. The law firm has brought E. coli lawsuits against such companies as Jack in the Box, Dole, ConAgra, Cargill, and Jimmy John’s. We have proudly represented such victims as Brianne Kiner, Stephanie Smith and Linda Rivera.

A 2009 Summer Camp with E. coli O157:H7

On October 26, 2009, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced that Crocetti’s Oakdale Packing Co., doing business as South Shore Meats, Inc., a Brockton, Massachusetts establishment, recalled approximately 1,039 pounds of fresh ground beef patties derived from bench trim, as well as mechanically tenderized beef cuts. The reason for the recall was possible E. coli O157:H7 contamination.

The recall was initiated after a Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) investigation revealed that a sample of Crocetti’s Oakdale Packing Co. beef had tested positive for E. coli O157:H7. After learning of the positive test result, FSIS continued to work with the Massachusetts DPH, the Rhode Island Department of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on the investigation. Results of the investigation linked the contaminated meat to the illnesses of at least twenty middle school students who had eaten ground beef produced by Crocetti’s Oakdale Packing Co. The students fell ill while attending a week-long class trip to Camp Bournedale in Plymouth, Massachusetts  The products recalled included:

  • 10-pound boxes containing 40, 4-ounce packages of “Beef Sirloin Patties.”
  • 7.5-pound boxes containing 12, 10-ounce packages of “Beef Teres Major Steaks Seasoned.”
  • Boxes of 24, 5-ounce packages of “BEEF BUTT STEAKS, (Filet Style).”
  • 9-pound boxes containing 12, 12-ounce packages of “BEEF BUTT STEAK, Center Cut, (sirloin style).”
  • 9-pound boxes containing 12, 12-ounce packages of “BEEF BUTT STEAK, Center Cut, (filet style).”
  • 6.75-pound boxes containing 12, 9-ounce packages of “BEEF BUTT STEAK, Center Cut, (sirloin style).”
  • Boxes of 16, 10-ounce packages of “Beef Top Butt Steaks Sirloin Style.”
  • Boxes of 20, 8-ounce packages of “Beef Butt Steaks Club Style.”
  • Boxes of 26, 6-ounce packages of “Beef Top Butt Steaks Sirloin Style.”
  • Boxes of 12, 10-ounce packages of “BEEF BUTT STEAKS, (Filet Style).”
  • 6-pound boxes containing 16, 6-ounce packages of “Beef Filet Of Sirloin, Executive Cut.”
  • Boxes of 12, 8-ounce packages of “BEEF BUTT STEAKS, (Filet Style).”

Each recalled box bore the establishment number “EST. 6336” inside the USDA mark of inspection and in some instances also a date code of “281.” The products were produced on October 8, 2009, and were distributed to wholesale distributors and institutions in Massachusetts.

Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of E. coli outbreaks and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). The E. coli lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of E. coli and other foodborne illness infections and have recovered over $600 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our E. coli lawyers have litigated E. coli and HUS cases stemming from outbreaks traced to ground beef, raw milk, lettuce, spinach, sprouts, and other food products. The law firm has brought E. coli lawsuits against such companies as Jack in the Box, Dole, ConAgra, Cargill, and Jimmy John’s. We have proudly represented such victims as Brianne Kiner, Stephanie Smith and Linda Rivera.

Seriously, Do Not Drink Raw Milk with Campylobacter

Main_RawMilk-300x169An analysis conducted by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future (CLF) found that the risks of drinking raw (unpasteurized) cow’s milk are significant. Consumers are nearly 100 times more likely to get foodborne illness from drinking raw milk than they are from drinking pasteurized milk. In fact, the researchers determined that raw milk was associated with over half of all milk-related foodborne illness, even though only an estimated 3.5% of the U.S. population consumes raw milk. Based on their findings, the researchers discourage the consumption of raw milk, which some claim is healthier and tastes better than pasteurized milk. They note that the risks are better understood than the benefits, and that further research is needed to determine whether the health benefit claims are legitimate.

The CLF analysis was prepared at the request of the Maryland House of Delegates’ Health and Operations Committee as lawmakers considered relaxing regulations that currently prohibit the sale of unpasteurized milk in Maryland. In the 2014 legislative session, House Bill 3 aimed to legalize the on-farm sale of unpasteurized milk in Maryland. The bill was tabled as legislators considered the issue. The research team presented its report to the House of Delegates last month.

Raw milk has become more popular in recent years, even though it is only available for direct purchase at farms in many states. Advocates believe that raw milk, which contains more natural antibodies, proteins and bacteria than pasteurized milk, is healthier, cleaner, tastes better and reduces lactose intolerance and allergies in certain people. Pasteurization, named after Louis Pasteur, involves heating milk to destroy microbes that may have entered the milk supply from fecal contamination, dairy operations, cow udders or other sources. The treated milk is then hermetically sealed to prevent recontamination.

“Ultimately, the scientific literature showed that the risk of foodborne illness from raw milk is over 100 times greater than the risk of foodborne illness from pasteurized milk,” says report lead author, Benjamin Davis, a CLF-Lerner Fellow and doctoral candidate in the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Department of Environmental Health Sciences. “Although potential benefits related to the consumption of raw milk would benefit from further investigation, we believe that from a public health perspective it is a far safer choice to discourage the consumption of raw milk.”

For their study, a team of investigators led by Keeve Nachman, PhD, director of the Public Health and Food Production Program at CLF and an assistant professor with the Bloomberg School, screened approximately 1,000 articles and reviewed 81 published journal articles relevant to the health risks and benefits of consuming raw cow’s milk. Microbial contaminants commonly found in milk include infectious Salmonella, Campylobacter, and Listeria species along with the Escherichia coli type O157:H7. These bacteria can cause foodborne illness in humans, including diarrhea, vomiting, cramping, fevers, and sometimes more serious consequences such as kidney failure or death.

“The risks of consuming raw milk instead of pasteurized milk are well established in the scientific literature, and in some cases can have severe or even fatal consequences,” notes co-author Cissy Li, a CLF research assistant and doctoral candidate with the Bloomberg School’s Department of Environmental Health Sciences. “Based on our findings, we discourage the consumption of raw milk, especially among vulnerable populations such as the elderly, people with impaired immune systems, pregnant women, and children.”

“A Literature Review of the Risks and Benefits of Consuming Raw and Pasteurized Cow’s Milk” was written by Benjamin Davis, Cissy Li and Keeve Nachman, and can be found online at: http://www.jhsph.edu/research/centers-and-institutes/johns-hopkins-center-for-a-livable-future/research/clf_publications/pub_rep_desc/Literature-Review-Risks-Benefits-Consuming-Raw-Pasteurized-Cow-Milk.html

Also, see www.realrawmilkfacts.com

Blue Bell Ice Cream Recalled Over Listeria Fears

Blue Bell Creameries has pulled more products from the market due to an outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes.

Listeria in Blue Bell ice cream that contributed to the deaths of three people and sickness of two others in Kansas has been traced to a second production facility operated by Blue Bell Ice Cream. A 3-ounce cup of ice cream contaminated with Listeria was traced to a plant in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. The ice cream cups listed below were distributed in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Wyoming via food service accounts:

CA5DAwTWEAAWvbdIce Cream Cup Chocolate (3 FL OZ) No UPC – SKU #453

Ice Cream Cup Strawberry (3 FL OZ) No UPC – SKU #452

Ice Cream Cup Vanilla (3 FL OZ) No UPC – SKU #451

The production line in Broken Arrow that makes the flavors has been stopped.

Ten products recalled earlier this month were from a production line at a plant in Brenham, Texas where the company is based. Blue Bell removed the following items:

Chocolate Chip Country Cookie, Great Divide Bar, Sour Pop Green Apple Bar, Cotton Candy Bar, Scoops, Vanilla Stick Slices, Almond Bars, 6 pack of Cotton Candy Bars, 6 pack of Sour Pop Green Apple Bars, 12 pack of No Sugar Added Moo Bars.

The first recall began after five patients at Via Christi St. Francis hospital in Wichita, Kansas, became ill with listeriosis while hospitalized at some point from December 2013 to January 2015. Officials determined at least four drank milkshakes that contained Blue Bell ice cream. Three of the patients later died.

Listeria symptoms cause fever and muscle aches, and can include gastrointestinal issues, according to the Centers for Disease Control’s website. The sometimes-fatal bacteria primarily affect older adults, pregnant women, newborns and adults with weakened immune systems.

Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Listeria outbreaks. The Listeria lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Listeria and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $600 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation. Our Listeria lawyers have litigated Listeria cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of foods, such as caramel apples, cantaloupe, cheese, celery and milk.