An outbreak of Campylobacter infections (campylobacteriosis) has been linked to raw milk sold at Ropelato Dairy in Ogden, Utah.
Here is what we know to date:
- 45 cases of Campylobacter infection have been reported in people who said (or whose parent said) they drank raw milk in the week before getting sick;
- Campylobacter cases have been reported from the following counties in Utah: Cache, Davis, Morgan, Salt Lake, Utah and Weber;
- 2 people from other states are sick, one from California and one from Idaho;
- The date of the first day of illness for the 45 people sickened in this outbreak ranges from May 9, 2014 to July 21, 2014;
- People from 2 to 74 were sickened;
- All 45 cases drank milk purchased at Ropelato Dairy in Weber County, Utah;
- Several tests of raw milk samples taken at Ropelato Dairy were positive for Campylobacter bacteria.
Consumers cannot tell if there is Campylobacter in milk because the cells are too small to see without a microscope and this pathogen does not give milk an off smell or taste. It is the responsibility of the processor and seller of raw milk to make sure the milk is free of dangerous pathogens and therefore safe to drink.
People over the age of 65 are at higher risk of developing Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS) from a Campylobacter infection. GBS causes paralysis, which is most often temporary but can be permanent. Attorney Fred Pritzker, our lead lawyer for these cases, recently won a case for a man who drank raw milk purchased at a store, became sick with a Campylobacter infection and then developed GBS, which caused permanent paralysis. He is paralyzed from the neck down and has difficulty breathing.
“One glass of raw milk contaminated with Campylobacter bacteria changed our clients life forever,” said Fred. “He and his wife had led active lives, visiting their children and grandchildren and participating in hobbies. Now he is bedridden.”