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Salmonella cases prompt recall of Umpqua Dairy milk, juice and drink products

Roseburg, Ore., company is working with state agencies to ensure safe milk and juice products

Oregon Public Health officials today want to make sure consumers are aware of a recall of certain milk and drink products by Umpqua Dairy Products Co. sold in Oregon, southwest Washington and northern California. Umpqua, headquartered in Roseburg, Ore., instituted the milk products recall today after salmonellosis cases were linked to milk produced at its Roseburg plant.

Milk, half and half, cream and buttermilk as well as Umpqua Dairy brand gallon orange juice and fruit drinks are part of the recall. Ice cream and other dairy products, including sour cream and cottage cheese, are not being recalled.

Umpqua Dairy has temporarily suspended operation while it is working with public health officials and the Oregon Department of Agriculture to review their processing systems so the company can ensure its products are safe for public consumption.

The recall comes after 23 people, all in Oregon, have been laboratory-confirmed with matching DNA patterns of Salmonella Braenderup. Two people have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported. Public health officials have been investigating the outbreak since the first cases were reported in October 2009.

“This outbreak has unfolded slowly and it was just recently that we were able to confirm the matching Salmonella strain in the Umpqua milk plant. We want to tell consumers that if they have any Umpqua milk at home, they should discard it or ask for a refund from the store where it was purchased. The risk to consumers is very low. We have had approximately one illness reported for every million containers that Umpqua has sold during this period,” said Paul Cieslak, M.D., Oregon Public Health Division.

All Umpqua Dairy products are pasteurized. The pasteurization process is effective at removing Salmonella. Recent testing at the Roseburg Dairy, however, identified this type of Salmonella on several different surfaces.

The following numbers of people from these counties have been infected with this Salmonella: Douglas, 6; Marion, 3; Jackson, 3; Lane, 3; Linn, 3; Josephine, 2; Coos, 1; Deschutes, 1; and Klamath, 1. The median age of those sickened is 13 years.

Umpqua also sells under the labels: Cascade, Great Value, Lady Lee, Market of Choice and Sherm’s. The company also supplies milk to Dairy Queens in Oregon and Washington. Those products that should be discarded or returned have a plant code 41-62 stamped on them. The recall affects milk, purchased on or prior to Monday, Aug. 16, 2010 or earlier or with an expiration date of Sept. 5, 2010 or earlier; buttermilk with an expiration date of Sept. 10, 2010, or earlier; orange juice and fruit drink with an expiration date of Sept. 15 or earlier.