Brucella_melitensis.jpgMy dear friend, David Gumpert (“The Pope of Raw Milk”), suggested that I may have jumped the gun on linking Twin Rivers Farm raw milk to the Brucella illness.  Mixed into his typical lawyer bashing and incorrect suggestions about why I do what I do, I certainly can concede his point that the Brucella illness might well be linked to other farm-related practices.  So, despite the health department’s suggestion to discard the milk due to the risk, I have added “Possibly” to the headline.  I hope that satidfies the “Holy See.”

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health issued a consumer alert on Friday after learning that a local farm’s raw milk could be contaminated with Brucella. Brucellosis, also called Bang’s disease, Crimean fever, Gibraltar fever, Malta fever, Maltese fever, Mediterranean fever, rock fever, or undulant fever, is a highly contagious zoonosis caused by ingestion of unpasteurized milk or meat from infected animals or close contact with their secretions.

Twin River Farm in Ashley Falls is the subject of a DPH investigation after a suspected human case was reported by an individual who had contact with the farm.

According to the DPH, Brucellosis is a bacterial infection that can cause flu-like symptoms including sweats, headache, fever, swollen lymph nodes, and back pains. In some cases, the infection can cause long-lasting and chronic symptoms. Adults are more likely to fall seriously ill than children.

Twin Rivers Farm milk is not sold in retail stores and the advisory does not apply to pasteurized milk. Anyone who has purchased raw milk from the farm is advised to discard it. Those who have consumed it are told to seek medical attention and contact their local board of health.

Raw milk containers from Twin River will have the following information on them:

Twin Rivers Farm 
PO Box 408 Ashley Falls, MA