Two New Jerseyans, including a toddler, were among the six dozen people in New Jersey and Pennsylvania to report illnesses this week after drinking raw milk from a dairy farm. The Family Cow voluntarily stopped selling raw milk for 11 days, and resumed sales on Feb. 7 after a Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture inspection re-approved the dairy's operations.
People become sick after consuming raw, or unpasteurized, milk that contains the Campylobacter, an enteric pathogen that causes gastrointestinal illness. The disease called campylobacteriosis usually develops within two to five days after ingesting the bacteria. Symptoms — often bloody diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and cramping — can last for about a week.
Milk is not the only food in which Campylobacter can be found, contaminated poultry and non potable water are also frequent sources of campylobacteriosis.