Simsbury Milk Being Tested For E. coli

Samples Testing OK So Far, Officials Say

July 23, 2008

 

Source of Article:  http://www.wfsb.com/health/16968268/detail.html

SIMSBURY, Conn. -- Town Farm Dairy is the only farm in the state certified to sell raw, organic milk, officials said, but four individuals have become sick with E. coli since purchasing milk from the farm.

The farm, run by a nonprofit, leases land from the town, officials said. They said it has about two dozen milking cows used to produce raw, skim, 1 percent and pasteurized milk in glass bottles.

 

“We have ordered the Town Farm Dairy, as of yesterday, to cease all operations until we have reports back from the Department of Agriculture and Department of Health,” said Simsbury First Selectman John Hampton. We want to make sure everything coming out of there is safe, is pristine for the public, and until we know that the farm will be closed indefinitely.”

 

The first case of E. coli occurred at the end of last month in a 2 year old, officials said. The second case came five days later in a seven year old, they said.

Since then, officials said, two more cases have cropped up.

“At the present time, there is no confirmation that the illnesses are directly related to Town Farm Dairy, but we do want to be extra vigilant to make sure all our residents are safe,” said Hampton.

The state Department of Agriculture had been taking samples from the farm for analysis, Officials said. They said they have not isolated any organism that might have caused the outbreak.

But officials said they department plans to continue investigating, along with Consumer Protection, the state Department of Health...and the Regional Health District.

“We’ve had and still have hopes for the dairy farm that it could be preserved and protected and operational in some capacity, and so we're optimistic,” said Hampton.

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