Second Outbreak of Illness From Raw Milk in Alaska This Year

02:08PM May 28, 2013
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Alaskan health officials are reporting a second outbreak of Campylobacter jejuni infection from consuming raw milk. Five cases have been identified so far, reports the Alaska Section of Epidemiology.

Thirty one people were sickened in a similar outbreak in February 2013. Both out-breaks are linked to a raw milk cow-share program in the Kenai Peninsula south of Anchorage.

Two of the five people stricken in the current outbreak sought medical attention. The genetic fingerprint of the bacteria isolated in these two individuals is the exact same unique strain that was found in cow manure from the previous outbreak.

"It has never been seen before in the United States," says Joe McLaughlin, Alaska state epidemiologist. "These outbreaks are an unfortunate reminded of the inherent risks associated with raw milk consumption, and underscore the importance of pasteurization."

You can read the full release from Alaska’s Department of Health and Human Services here.