For the past 10 years Allen and Cheryl Voortman of Pride and Joy Creamery in Granger, Washington, have produced high quality raw milk that has benefited the health of thousands of their customers. At the beginning of 2017 Pride and Joy Creamery was one of the largest raw milk dairies in Washington, distributing their nutrient-dense product throughout the state. Long certified as a 100% grassfed organic dairy, Pride and Joy received the highest rating given by the nonprofit organic industry watchdog Cornucopia Institute to organic milk producers–a rating given only to ten other dairies in the country.
Sadly, today, Pride and Joy Creamery is out of the retail raw milk business and only produces raw milk for pasteurization. The Voortmans no longer have the herd that produced raw milk for direct consumption. Two shutdowns of the dairy engineered by the Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) led the Voortmans to make the decision to end their raw milk operation.
In February 2017, WSDA and the Washington Department of Public Health accused the dairy’s raw milk of making two people ill with salmonella poisoning. It is not known whether public health officials tried to find any other foods the two sick individuals might have consumed in common once it was discovered that each drank the dairy’s raw milk. WSDA sent samples of the dairy’s raw milk to the state lab; while the samples were negative for salmonella, two samples were positive for shiga-toxin producing e-coli (STEC), a result the department used to pressure the Voortmans into conducting a voluntary recall of the dairy’s raw milk which ultimately resulted in the dairy being shut down for over two months. WSDA produced no evidence that the STEC it found in the milk samples was capable of making anyone sick.
In September, milk samples taken by WSDA tested positive for salmonella, eventually leading the department to suspend the dairy’s license to produce raw milk. When samples WSDA took in October were also positive for salmonella, the Voortmans shut down their raw milk operation for good rather than incur the tremendous expense it would have taken to get WSDA’s approval to start up again. Samples from the same batch of milk that the Voortmans sent to an accredited laboratory in Idaho were all negative for salmonella. During this time, there were no reports of illness caused by the consumption of raw milk. A November post on the Pride and Joy Facebook page announcing the end of the dairy’s retail raw milk business noted, “the bureaucracy, financial burden and uncertainty of this business is now too much for us.”
There is something wrong with the Washington regulatory system when one of the state’s most popular dairy is forced out of business even though its raw milk has arguably made no one sick. Pride and Joy is not the only Washington raw milk dairy to go out of business in recent months; since around the middle of the year three other dairies have turned in their permits. The four farms account for about ten percent of the total number of licensed Washington raw milk dairies.
Photo below by Yevgeniy Novozhilov posted November 13, 2017, on the Facebook page for Pride and Joy Creamery with the comment: “Thank you Pride and Joy, for the best-tasting raw milk. My family really enjoyed it for the past several years. Will miss your products very much!”
Alarming. Two other raw milk dairyies have closed down, Springs of Hope Creamery in Moyie Springs Idaho and Pereira Pastures Dairy in Lubbock Texas.
This is happening in Texas and other states as well. Out of the blue a pristine dairy that sells raw milk just happens to test positive for a bacteria. I think the labs contaminated the milk, or the people that collected the samples did. Either way, big agra control and corruption.
Sharing medicinal food will never be supported by government/industry – too many things wrong with the potential for natural health. The grounded dairy farmer will not ask permission of this gubindustry to share private food. Declare your independence from the mediocre food crisis! Just Eat Real Food and sign up with a good legal defense fund to claim your right to be healthy, naturally:)
Hackers need to be hacking the richest not the poorest,
this is so sad! I am sorry for the owners that they suffered so much persecution that they had to buckle under the pressure. This is criminal on the part of our government. (and I use the term government loosely – should more likely be called a dictatorship).
Raw milk is one of the purest forms of nutrition and we ruin it.
Again, I am so sorry for the owners and understand that they have to make a living (while the powers that be make it difficult for them!)
It’s just so darn Evil. The government go after anything that makes folks healthy because keeping folks sick is so much more profitable,so they poison us with their commercial food,vaccines and chemicals just to make big industry shareholders and owners rich. We’re just a commodity to them,not humans.To top it off,they take away all sense of morality,honor and integrity in the government (public) schools and media,so the populous won’t understand what’s happening to them. EVIL !!!
We drank their milk thru all the recalls and BS brought down on the dairy by the. USDA. No one ever got sick on their milk and it makes me sad to live in a country that forces their citizens to eat and drink fake food. Thank God we can grown our own food and milk our own cows and drink as much as we like …..by the wayI grew up on a farm where my dad milked our cows ..it wasn’t the cleanest operation but we never got sick off that milk that was sometimes drank right direct from the cow, squirted into our mouths. The government needs to get the hell out of our lives and stop the insanity.
I’m so sorry about this. Thank you for publishing. Here in NH raw milk is plentiful. We need to stay vigilant to keep what we have here.
What a shame!… these Government agencies bribed and controlled by big producers are “hanging” the honest hard workers by, most of the time -almost guaranteed- producing fake test results to achieve their diabolic plans.
I was born and raised -along with my 13 siblings- on a farm where we manually milked the cows ourselves, we drank the milk right out of their tits, and we NEVER got sick. How can a farm that practices stringent sanitary polices have milk contaminated that causes people to get sick?… this does not add up.
Good luck to you all!