Food Safety

Tennessee E. coli outbreak linked to a raw milk dairy

Five cases have required hospitalization so far.

Michigan E. coli outbreak linked to a raw milk dairy

As the regulation of raw milk continues in many states, an E. coli outbreak in Tennessee is sure to draw some attention. A strain of E. coli that caused nine children to become ill after drinking raw milk has been linked to a dairy farm near Knoxville, according to the Tennessee Health Department.

The health department says laboratory analysis of samples taken from animal waste at McBee Dairy Farm matches the strain of E. coli responsible for the illnesses, several of which required hospitalization. The department undertook an onsite inspection of the farm as well as interviews with households that purchased the farm’s milk.

McBee Dairy Farm operates a cow share program that allows it to distribute raw milk without technically selling it, since the retail sale of raw milk is illegal in Tennessee. A Tennessee Health Department spokesperson says investigation of the case included a recommendation that the farm engage a consultant to ensure food safety in the operation.

“This outbreak points out, again, the serious risks associated with drinking unpasteurized or ‘raw’ milk,” says Health Commissioner John Dreyzehner in a statement. “While people with stronger immune systems may be able to overcome the bacteria found in raw milk, children, older people, pregnant women and those with health conditions can be seriously harmed by bacteria in non-pasteurized milk products and should not consume them.”

Raw milk has been the subject of legislation and challenges in several states recently. After a long fight, Wisconsin’s Senate has allowed legislation out of committee that would allow sales of raw milk in the state, with a vote expected in 2014. In Oregon, a farmer recently challenged the constitutionality of a rule against advertising raw milk sales.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to Food Engineering Magazine.

Recent Articles by Shane O'Halloran

You must login or register in order to post a comment.



Image Galleries

Food Engineering's Food Automation & Manufacturing Conference and Expo 2015

Images from Food Engineering's Food Automation & Manufacturing Conference and Expo in Clearwater Beach, Florida, April 12-15, 2015. The event brought food and beverage processors and suppliers together to gain valuable information on the latest trends and technologies in manufacturing, automation, sustainability and food safety.


Burns & McDonnell project manager RJ Hope and senior project engineer Justin Hamilton discuss the distinctions between Food Safety and Food Defense as well as the implications for food manufacturers of the Food Safety Modernization Act.
More Podcasts

Food Engineering

Food Engineering May 2015 Cover

2015 May

The May 2015 issue of Food Engineering explores effective tools for hitting manufacturing targets. Also, read how processors are looking for faster ways to detect harmful pathogens in food and beverages without sacrificing accuracy or reliability.

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Plant Facility/Site Issues

What issue about your current plant facility/site keeps you up the most at night?
View Results Poll Archive


Food Authentication Using Bioorganic Molecules

This text provides critical tools and data needed to augment routine food analysis and enhance food safety by aiding in the detection of counterfeit, and potentially deleterious, foods.

More Products

Clear Seas Research

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications,Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.


FE recent tweets

facebook_40.pngtwitter_40px.pngyoutube_40px.png linkedin_40px.pngGoogle +

Food Master

Food Engineering Food Master 2015Food Master 2015 is now available!

Where the buying process begins in the food and beverage manufacturing market. 

Visit to learn more.