As if it wasn’t enough that Orange County, California was home to a January outbreak of the measles – a disease once thought nearly nonexistent due to mandatory vaccinations – three young children from the area were recently sickened after being fed raw goat’s milk, the Orange County Register reports.
All of the children contracted campylobacteriosis, an infection associated with unpasteurized dairy products. All affected children are under 5 years of age, the Register reported.
The infections come months after state health care officials warned about unpasteurized milk after six people in Northern California were sickened with the same infection in March, the Register reports. A recall was called the same month, Food Safety News reports. All nine cases have been traced to raw goat milk from Claravale Farm in San Benito County.
Symptoms of the infection are diarrhea, fever, cramps and abdominal pain.
As of April 27, Claravale was cleared to sell milk again, its website states.
On its website, Claravale Farms advertises that its milk “goes from the cow, to the bottle, to you,” and, “The natural nutrients, vitamins, and enzymes it contains have not been destroyed or altered by cooking, as is the case with pasteurized products.”
There has been a growing movement to dispose of federal regulations of raw milk, the Washington Post reported last year. But disease outbreaks associated with raw milk have grown with popularity. Eight out of 10 cases occur in states where sale of unpasteurized dairy is legal.
Early this year, parents refusing to vaccinate their children helped spread measles to seven states and two other countries, the Los Angeles Times reported. As with the raw milk movement, the anti-vaccination campaign is populated by people who distrust the government and mainstream science.
The Post reported that “distrust of government and a thirst for the milk have helped fuel the movement to do away with federal and state restrictions despite the warnings.”
Caravale raw goat milk sells at one outlet – Real Food Bay Area – for $9.25 a quart, or $32 per gallon.