A sour note for the raw-milk fans out there: Unpasteurized milk is 150 times more likely to cause a disease outbreak than pasteurized milk, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Before it ever shows up in a carton, most milk is pasteurized -- heated to kill any harmful bacteria it contains. But there's a small but thriving market for unpasteurized "raw" milk. Some say they drink it because it has a richer, creamier taste, according to a 2009 article -- but more often the reason given is because, in this organic-conscious age, it's seen as more healthful.
Perhaps it depends on how you define "healthful." The CDC report, published Tuesday in Emerging Infectious Diseases, looked at all reports of dairy-related disease outbreak in the United States from 1993 to 2006 and found that, of the 121 outbreaks, 60% were caused by raw milk products (which would include cheese and yogurt).
That's all the more startling, given that, according to the CDC estimate, only 1% of dairy products during that 13-year time period were from raw milk.