Inspectors with the Missouri Department of Agriculture have halted production and distribution from Morningland Dairy located in Mountain View, after raw cheese from the dairy tested positive for Listeria monocytogenes and Staphylococcus aureus.

The cheese samples were seized June 30 in California; Missouri officials were made aware of the California department’s test results today.

Inspectors from the Missouri Department of Agriculture are coordinating with officials from the state Department of Health and Senior Services and the Food and Drug Administration to gather information concerning the distribution of the cheese from the dairy.

The dairy sells several types of raw cows’ milk and raw goats’ milk cheeses across the United States.  Click here more information on the potential risks associated with consumption of raw milk products.

Listeriosis is a serious infection caused by eating food contaminated with the bacterium called Listeria monocytogenes.

The incubation period (time between ingestion and the onset of symptoms) for Listeria ranges from three to 70 days and averages 21 days (Bryan, 1999).

A person with listeriosis may develop fever, muscle aches, and sometimes gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea or diarrhea (CDC website, 2009). If infection spreads to the nervous system, symptoms such as headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, or convulsions can occur. In immune-deficient individuals, Listeria can invade the central nervous system, causing meningitis and/or encephalitis (brain infection). Infected pregnant women ordinarily experience only a mild, flu-like illness; however, infection during pregnancy can lead to miscarriage, infection of the newborn or even stillbirth.