The Family Farm Raw Milk Campylobacter Lawsuit – Pennsylvania (2012)
Illness onset dates for the outbreak ranged from January 17 to February 1. At least nine people were hospitalized. This was one of the largest foodborne illness linked to raw milk in Pennsylvania history, and affected individuals in four states. The breakdown of illnesses by state is as follows: Pennsylvania (70), Maryland (5), West Virginia (3), and New Jersey (2).
Since 2007, Pennsylvania raw milk dairies have been linked to at least seven outbreaks, now resulting in a total of 287 illnesses. In 2008, the state had a raw milk outbreak of Campylobacter infection that sickened 72 people.
Although the dairy temporarily halted sales upon discovery of the outbreak, the farm was allowed to resume production on February 6, after passing a health inspection. Lab tests by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene found the outbreak strain of Campylobacter in two unopened bottles of raw milk collected from customers' homes, and the owners of the dairy acknowledged responsibility for the contaminated milk that caused the outbreak. "It was us ... food from our farm has made people sick," owner Edwin Shank wrote in an open letter posted on the dairy's website.
Of the 80 confirmed cases, 25 (31 percent) were under the age of 18, while all those ill ranged in age from 2 to 74. There have been two additional outbreaks since 2012 -