Case Updates

Case-Main-600x626Here you can find updates on legal cases of raw milk farmers defending themselves in court against local and state charges. Many of these farmers are members of the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund, and the Fund is representing them. We urge all raw milk farmers and buying clubs who offer raw milk to join the fund. For a modest annual membership fee you have access to a wealth of information about safely and legally producing raw milk, and you have access to their 24-hour hotline to reach a lawyer in case you are raided at any time.

See also information about the legal status of raw milk under International Updates, National Updates, and State Updates.

Alvin Schlangen Trial--A Personal Account

By Susie Zahratka and Kathryn Niflis Johnson BACKGROUND The case the State of Minnesota has built against Alvin Schlangen dates back to June 2010, when the Schlangen farm was searched following the raid and subsequent closure of the Traditional Foods...

Alvin Schlangen, Minnesota

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Fall 2013 On August 15, Freeport farmer Alvin Schlangen was convicted by a Stearns County jury on five counts for violations of the Minnesota food and dairy code. The five charges against him were (1) operating without...

Bechard Family Farm, Missouri

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Fall 2012 On July 31 Armand and Teddi Bechard entered into a consent agreement with the State of Missouri, ending a case that began in 2009. On two occasions in the spring of 2009, undercover agents from the Springfield-Greene...

Dan Allgyer, Pennsylvania

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Spring 2012 On February 2 Federal District Court Judge Lawrence F. Stengel ordered a permanent injunction against dairy farmer Dan Allgyer prohibiting Allgyer from distributing raw milk and raw milk products across...

Dan Brown, Maine

Summer 2013: Dan Brown Case Before Maine Supreme Court On May 13 Blue Hill Dairy farmer Dan Brown had his case heard before the Maine Supreme Court. Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund General Counsel Gary Cox argued Brown’s case before the court. Brown w...

Estrella Family Creamery, Washington

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Spring 2013 On February 28 attorneys for Kelli and Anthony Estrella―owners of Estrella Family Creamery (Estrella) and the United States Department of Justice filed a motion in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals t...

Evergreen Acres Goat Farm, California

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Fall 2011 California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) enforcement actions weren’t limited to Rawesome . The agency sent a cease-and-desist letter to a Mendocino County herdshare operation and worked with t...

Glen Wise, Pennsylvania

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Fall 2008 On August 2 Pennsylvania State Senator Mike Folmer hosted the “Real Deal About Real Milk” Freedom and Liberty Seminar in Lebanon; approximately three hundred raw milk consumers and farmers heard presentations on ...

Hendricks Farm & Dairy, Pennsylvania

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Winter 2008 Hendricks Farm and Dairy (HFD) is a grass-based organic raw milk dairy in Telford. The dairy boasts a state-of-the-art facility and has an impeccable track record with not a single positive pathogen test...

Lawton's Family Farm, Massachusetts

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. The future of Lawton’s Family Farm (Lawton’s), one of the oldest farms in the U.S., was threatened by the town of Foxborough’s Board of Health. Lawton’s is one of about thirty licensed raw milk dairies in the state of Mass...

Mark Nolt, Pennsylvania

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Summer 2009 A hearty thank you for all your support during our recent raw milk episodes (see Wise Traditions, Summer and Fall, 2008. Thank you for all the cards, letters and phone calls, for participating at the...

Meadowsweet Dairy, New York

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Winter 2008 On November 18, 2008, Albany County Supreme Court Judge John C. Egan, Jr. dismissed the petition of Meadowsweet Dairy, LLC, for a declaratory judgment that the LLC’s distribution of raw dairy products t...

Michael Hartmann, Minnesota

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Winter 2013 On October 29 Sibley County District Court Judge Erica H. McDonald dismissed five criminal charges brought by the state of Minnesota against Gibbon dairy farmer Mike Hartmann for violations of the Minnesota...

Michael Schmidt, Canada

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Spring 2014--Cow Shares In Canada In a predictable decision on March 11, the Court of Appeal for Ontario dismissed the appeal of Michael Schmidt from the Ontario Court of Justice’s decision convicting the farmer f...

Minnesota Department of Agriculture Crackdown

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) has escalated its campaign to restrict access to raw milk by stepping up enforcement actions against farmers Alvin Schlangen and Mike Hartmann (see their case update pages for background). Already...

Morningland Dairy, Missouri

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Spring 2013 On January 25 a two-and-a-half year battle between Morningland Dairy and the Missouri State Milk Board ended when the Milk Board carted off 36,420 pounds of raw cheese from Morningland’s facility to a...

Organic Pastures Dairy Company, California

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Spring 2013 On February 26 FDA finally issued its response denying the citizens petition filed by Mark McAfee, president and founder of Organic Pastures Dairy Company (OPDC), seeking to amend the regulation banning...

Rawesome Food Club, California

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Fall 2011 On August 3, 2011 federal, state and local government officials raided the Rawesome Foods store in Venice, seizing food, records, computers and cash from the store. The officials seized almost the entire...

Richard Hebron, Michigan

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Summer 2007 The Michigan Department of Agriculture (MDA) has reached a settlement with Richard Hebron of Family Farms’ Cooperative after their cops-and-robbers showdown and confiscation of his property last year. The g...

Sharon Palmer, California

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Fall 2011: See update within Rawesome Updates Update, Fall 2010 : See update within Rawesome Updates Update, Summer 2009 Good news from California. Sharon Palmer appeared at an arraignment before the Ventura...

The Family Cow, Pennsylvania

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Summer 2013 Another example of regulator bias against raw milk occurred on May 29 when the Pennsylvania Departments of Agriculture (PDA) and Health (PDH) issued a joint press release advising consumers to discard...

Vernon Hershberger, Wisconsin

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. [You can also follow the case on the family's website, vernonhershberger.com ] Update, Fall 2013 Loganville dairy farmer Vernon Hershberger was sentenced to $1,000 in fines and $513 in court costs for his conviction on...

White Egret Farm, Texas

White Egret Farm (WEF) has been supplying Grade A raw goat milk, raw milk cheeses, goat yogurts, and natural beef, pork, goat and turkey from its location in Austin, Texas to health conscious consumers and babies with wise parents since 1992. In August...

Whole Life Buying Club, Kentucky

By Pete Kennedy, Esq. Update, Summer 2011 On May 27 an inspector from the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness stopped off at a dropsite for the Whole Life Buying Club (WLBC), issuing the coordinator for the site an order...
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