WSDA Suspends Raw Milk Dairy Processing License
by Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA)
Posted: 2017-10-09 15:47:45 EST

OLYMPIA — The Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) today suspended the milk processing plant license for Pride and Joy Dairy Inc. due to ongoing concerns about pathogens in their retail raw milk product.

The milk processing plant, based in Toppenish, still has milk producer licenses, allowing it to ship milk to other processing facilities for pasteurization. But without an active processing license, Pride and Joy Dairy may not legally bottle and sell raw milk on the retail market. WSDA advises consumers to avoid drinking any Pride and Joy retail raw milk products.

WSDA took the step of suspending the milk processing plant license for Pride and Joy after tests by the state Department of Health confirmed that the salmonella pathogens detected in the milk samples matched the unique strain, salmonella Dublin, identified in illnesses that hospitalized two people this past January.

In September, WSDA's laboratory detected the salmonella pathogen in samples from the dairy taken as part of the routine testing of all licensed raw milk dairy operations. Isolates from those samples were submitted to Department of Health for further testing, resulting in the confirmed linkage to the earlier salmonella illnesses.

WSDA previously advised Pride and Joy to recall its products with best-by dates of Oct. 4 and later, but the dairy initially declined. It subsequently initiated a market withdrawal on its own of certain products.

WSDA also issued a Notice of Correction to Pride and Joy on Oct. 5 due to the presence of pathogens in their milk. 
Salmonella can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in humans. Young children, the elderly, and those with compromised immune systems are especially at risk. Symptoms include fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and, in some cases, arterial infections, endocarditis and arthritis. Anyone experiencing these symptoms should immediately contact a health care provider.

Products from Pride and Joy Dairy Inc. were last subject to a recall in February 2017 after testing and sampling detected Shiga toxin-producing E. coli in samples of their retail raw milk. That testing was prompted by the earlier reports of the salmonella illnesses in January.

The dairy has until Oct. 16 to request an appeal of the license suspension.

Source: Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA)