New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets Commissioner Richard A. Ball today warned consumers not to consume Connecticut Hill Melter raw milk cheese from Nathaniel Thompson, doing business as (DBA) Remembrance Farm, due to possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. Remembrance Farm is located at 6294 Searsburg Road, Trumansburg in Tompkins County. To date, no illnesses have been reported to the Department associated with this product.
The product is packaged in approximately 0.5-pound wedges wrapped in cheese wax paper with the name Connecticut Hill Melter and a batch number of 042323. The consumer alert affects all packages with this code; however, any package with an unknown batch date should not be consumed.
This product was sold and distributed to members of Full Plate Farm Collective Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) in Ithaca, NY.
A sample of the cheese collected by an inspector from the Department was discovered to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. On September 15, 2023 the producer was notified of a preliminary positive test result. Further laboratory testing, completed on September 19, 2023, confirmed the presence of Listeria monocytogenes in the cheese sample.
The Department recommends that any consumers who purchased this cheese to immediately dispose of it and call Nathaniel Thompson DBA Remembrance Farm at 310-804-7240.
Listeria monocytogenes causes listeriosis, which can be a serious and sometimes fatal infection in young children, cancer patients, elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Listeriosis can cause miscarriages and stillbirths in pregnant women. It can also cause short-term, flu-like symptoms, such as high fever, severe headaches, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea in healthy people.
It is important to note that raw milk does not provide the protection of pasteurization. Pasteurization is a process that heats milk to a specific temperature for a specific amount of time. Pasteurization kills the bacteria responsible for numerous illnesses and diseases such as listeriosis, salmonellosis, campylobacteriosis, typhoid fever, tuberculosis, diphtheria, and brucellosis. Pasteurization of milk is recognized internationally as an effective means of preventing outbreaks of foodborne illnesses, including listeriosis.