NPR Analyzes Why Some States Want to Legalize Raw Milk

In a recent article, NPR analyzes why, despite the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Medical Association strongly advising against the consumption of raw milk, more and more states are legalizing its sale.

According to NPR, raw milk “…has become popular in recent years as part of the local food movement: an estimated 3% of the population drinks at least one glass a week.”

The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture’s (NASDA) most recent raw milk survey, conducted in 2011, shows that 30 states have legalized the sales of raw milk in some form. The CDC believes the widening of legalization corresponds with an increase in raw milk-related illnesses.

Bob Ehart, senior policy and science adviser at the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture, points out that legalizing raw milk doesn’t necessarily condone it. Rather, “…legalization may give public health agencies the power to regulate a market that might otherwise exist underground” (see NPR Blog “The Salt”).

Realmilk.com is a consumer education project of the Weston A. Price Foundation, a nutrition education nonprofit based in Washington, D.C. Visit their website, westonaprice.org.

Share

Will Oregon Allow for the Advertising of Raw Milk?

In 2014, the state of Oregon agreed not to enforce a ban on advertising the sale of raw milk, although the advertising itself remained illegal.

Now, the Oregon House committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources is considering a bill that would allow producers to market raw milk directly to consumers. The chairman of the Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee, Representative Brad Witt (D-Clatskanie), is in support of House Bill 2446 and has said he would like it to move through as quickly as possible.

This issue revolves around not only food freedom, but also freedom of speech. In 2013, the Virginia-based Institute for Justice filed a free speech lawsuit on behalf of one Oregon milk producer, “…contending that the state was violating the right of Oregon farmers to speak about a legal product” (see The Register-Guard).

Realmilk.com is a consumer education project of the Weston A. Price Foundation, a nutrition education nonprofit based in Washington, D.C. Visit their website, westonaprice.org.

Share

South Dakota Governor Signs Raw Milk Bill

South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard has signed Senate Bill 45, which will make raw milk and raw cream a legal product regulated by the state, just like grade A milk.

This bill is a result of the efforts of a Raw Milk Work Group that was formed in February 2014 on recommendation by the South Dakota Senate Health and Human Services Committee.

Gena Parkhurst, one of the work group members and a raw milk consumer, says, “I am happy with the compromises and the way that it worked out. Everybody who was involved in the raw milk work group made some kind of a compromise so it felt like there was a fair balance of give and take.”

She says the next step is to outline the rules and regulations that will apply to raw milk and raw cream sales, hinting that there might be an education program involved, and that group members will gather their thoughts and move forward in the process.

Realmilk.com is a consumer education project of the Weston A. Price Foundation, a nutrition education nonprofit based in Washington, D.C. Visit their website, westonaprice.org.

Share

West Virginia Governor Vetoes Raw Milk Bill

West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin vetoed a bill that would have allowed consumers access to raw milk through herdshare agreements, which the state Senate had earlier approved.

Governor Tomblin’s veto message used the tired argument that allowing people to drink raw milk “would pose a serious risk to public health.” West Virginia House Delegate Kelli Sobonya (R – Cabell) called the veto shortsighted, preventing West Virginia from “…joining a majority of other states who support farm food freedom.”

Realmilk.com is a consumer education project of the Weston A. Price Foundation, a nutrition education nonprofit based in Washington, D.C. Visit their website, westonaprice.org.

Share

Raw Milk Gains Legislative Support in Maine

Raw milk advocates in Maine began 2015 optimistic about getting several food freedom passed by the Maine legislature, three of which would legalize the sales of raw milk in some form.

They have reason to remain optimistic, as in early March some officials from the Maine Department of Agriculture said they support easing licensing requirements for some dairy farmers who sell raw milk directly to consumers.

The Maine State Legislature is considering two bills that would do just that. LD 229 would allow dairy farms producing less than 20 gallons of raw milk per day to sell it at their farm or farmers market without state licensing or inspections. LD 312 would exempt farms from state licensing or inspections only if the raw milk is sold directly to consumers at the farm, though farmers would need to pass a dairy sanitation course and would not be able to advertise raw milk.

Read more about who testified in support of which bill, and how each bill would affect Maine dairy farmers via the Portland Press Herald.

Realmilk.com is a consumer education project of the Weston A. Price Foundation, a nutrition education nonprofit based in Washington, D.C. Visit their website, westonaprice.org.

Share