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Raw Milk and Raw Milk Filter Microbiological Surveillance Programme

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Over a 12-month period from June 2012 to June 2013, 600 samples of raw milk and in-line raw milk filters from 211 farms across Ireland were tested for a range of pathogens and indicator organisms including Salmonella species, verocytotoxin producing Escherichia coli (VTEC), Listeria monocytogenes, Campylobacter species, coagulase-positive staphylococci and Escherichia coli.

Listeria monocytogenes and Campylobacter spp. were the most commonly isolated pathogens from both raw milk filter and raw milk samples. Approximately 22% and 20% of raw milk filter samples were positive for Campylobacter spp. and L. monocytogenes respectively. While 7% and 3% of raw milk samples were positive for L. monocytogenes and Campylobacter spp., respectively.

Only 1% of raw milk filters and 0.5% of raw milk samples were positive for the presence of Salmonella spp. E. coli O26 (VTEC) was detected in 6% of raw milk filter samples.

Based on the findings of this survey, the FSAI continues to recommend that the sale of raw milk for direct human consumption should be prohibited in Ireland and the farm families who drink milk produced on their own farm, should pasteurise it first using a home pasteuriser or boil it before use.

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Food Specific Guidance |