Health Risks From Unpasteurised Milk
Ministry Warns Of Health Risks From Unpasteurised Milk And Non Commercial Pork Production
The Ministry of Health today warned of the dangers of drinking unpasteurised milk and eating poorly cooked non commercial pork.
This warning follows recent notifications of disease linked to consumption of these products.
Consumption of unpasteurised milk can result in infection by verotoxic E coli, this may cause serious illness particularly in children.
Consumers need to be aware of the risks of drinking raw (unpasteurised) milk and that feeding raw milk to domestic pets, such as cats and dogs, may lead to human infection within the household.
Commercially available milk is pasteurised, a process which involves heating the milk to kill organisms that can lead to disease.
Trichinosis is a disease that can be contracted from eating poorly cooked contaminated feral or noncommercial pork.
Two people suspected of having Trichinosis recently required hospital treatment of their illness following consumption of infected pork. These are the first locally acquired cases of this disease since 1964.
The symptoms of Trichinosis can take up to eight weeks to show after eating contaminated or undercooked meat. Symptoms can include nausea, diarrhoea, vomiting, fever, and abdominal discomfort to muscle pains, aching joints and itchy skin.
This reiterates a warning issued earlier this week by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry which advised that home killed meat can be used for private consumption only and that meat of any type should be brought from reputable operators.
Care should be taken when preparing pork to make sure the meat is thoroughly cooked prior to eating. Care also needs to be taken when butchering and storing the meat to ensure that raw product is not consumed or contaminates other food.