Highlights from an Interview with David Gumpert

Book Cover black frameIn mid-April, raw milk activist and author David Gumpert gave an interview to the Mountain Xpress in advance of a presentation and book signing about raw milk and our food system. Gumpert recently finished a successful crowdfunding campaign for a new book, The Raw Milk Answer Book.

In the interview, Gumpert discusses how he got interested in raw milk in the first place, as well as offering his opinion about why there is such much hostility towards raw milk today: “I think there are two reasons. One is historical. We did have a serious problem with raw dairy back in the 1800s and early 1900s…The diseases then were much more dangerous and often fatal – things like typhoid and tuberculosis. The diseases you can get from raw milk today are the diseases you can get from any other food…The second reason is economic.”

He also shared tips for people who want to find safe sources of raw milk and whether he thinks raw milk will be more or less accepted in the future. Read more via Mountain Xpress.

David Gumpert’s new book The Raw Milk Answer Book is now available! Support @westonaprice by buying it with this affiliate link.

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.

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Author David Gumpert Analyzes How Stereotypes Play Into Raw Milk War

In a recent post on his blog The Complete Patient, David Gumpert analyzes how perpetuating stereotypes can be prohibitive to productive dialogues while releasing expectations can lead to sincere engagement and discussions. While this premise can be applied to any debate, Gumpert specifically asks if the debate over food rights can move beyond stereotypes – such as the stereotypes of raw milk proponents as antigovernment hippies or public health agents as heartless enforcers of food regulations.

Gumpert cites both positive and negative examples of interactions between raw milk proponents and members of the public health community. He compliments Don Schaffner, a food safety professor at Rutgers University who engaged with Gumpert in the comments thread of one of his blog posts, by saying “I appreciated Schaffner’s comments following my previous post – not so much for anything specific he said, but for the fact that he was willing to sincerely engage, discuss…That he didn’t throw his hands in the air when the discussion frustrated, swear he was done trying to communicate with the wackos here (as some have done in the past).”

However, Gumpert chastised New Yorker writer Dana Goodyear, whose book includes anecdotes about attending raw food events that portray people who eat raw food in a stereotypical, derogatory manner. In one example, Goodyear writes, “The raw-milkers claimed to be on board with everything, from putting a stop to roadside sobriety tests to ending seatbelt laws.” Gumpert responds, “The imagery was clear: the raw milk supporters attending the conference were a bunch of libertarian antigovernment nut cases. I was at that conference…and heard little discussion about the politics of ‘the antigovernment extremists.’”

Gumpert ends his post on an optimistic note: with the hope that individuals on both sides of the raw milk issue will begin to see past stereotypes and engage in productive discussions.

The Campaign for Real Milk is a project of the nutrition education non-profit, The Weston A. Price Foundation. Donate to help fund research into the benefits of nutrient dense foods.  http://www.westonaprice.org/lab

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Interview with David Gumpert Takes a Look at the 100-Year War Against Raw Milk

As more Americans embrace the farm-to-table movement, tensions between consumers, farmers and food safety officials in the dairy industry have grown increasingly contentious when it comes to the sales of raw milk.

David Gumpert, author of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Food Rights, spoke with Steve Goss of Atlanta’s NPR station about these tensions in an interview on November 18, 2013.

In the interview, Gumpert discusses the history of raw milk and pasteurization, how farmers are penalized in states that ban the sales of raw milk, and how some consumers are finding loopholes in state laws that will allow them to buy it.

At one point, Goss points out that states that allow the sales of raw milk also mandate warning labels, and asks if there is a parallel between tobacco and raw milk production.

“Tobacco products are, from any vantage point, much more dangerous than raw milk and so you’re pointing out an inconsistency or, I guess some people would say, a double standard. Raw milk is riskier, in my view, than pasteurized milk but both raw milk and pasteurized milk are not very risky in the whole scheme of the food pyramid,” responds Gumpert.

Despite the risks, Gumpert believes that consumers should have the right to decide what kinds of foods they put into their bodies and the information necessary to make those decisions. Although this means fewer regulations on raw milk, he concludes that there should be regulations on food suppliers that taint the food supply, such as pathogens, antibiotics and GMOs.

Learn more about Gumpert’s views in the complete broadcast here.

The Campaign for Real Milk is a project of the nutrition education non-profit, The Weston A. Price Foundation. Donate to help fund research into the benefits of nutrient dense foods.  http://www.westonaprice.org/lab

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