If you have a story about the power of raw milk, please email the webmaster (at) realmilk.com, subject: Raw Milk Testimonial.
Happy Cowshare Owners
February 2015–Testimonials a cow share owner shared with us, from his members.
We love knowing where our family’s milk comes from. We love knowing the farm, the farmer and the cows. We have a number of options to choose from for milk shares in our community, but Copper Hill Farms is the best in our opinion. Bill Munzing, our local cow herder :), takes his role very seriously. His milking barn and pick-up area are meticulously clean; we have never had a moments worry about receiving a product that was anything less than whole, fresh, perfect milk–direct from the cow. In addition, as an educated supporter of the Weston A Price Foundation and its nutrition objectives, Bill also fully
understands and lives the values of his work. We truly appreciate Bill for his willingness in this day and age to provide such a great source of real milk. There are not many people willing or able to be tied down to the farm for two rounds of milking each day. It is a sacrifice in many ways. We use the milk received from Copper Hill Farms for cooking/baking, general drinking purposes, and making butter and cheese when quantities permit. The whey generated in the cheese making process doesn’t go to waste either. By far, the majority of the dairy my family consumes comes from our Copper Hill
milk. Thank you for this wonderful resource.–KS: Check, VA
When I had an acute episode of IBS, after wasting a considerable amount of time with clueless medical doctors, I decided to take matters into my own hands. Raw milk has been an important part of my healing, by introducing healthy bacteria into my gut. It has been very successful for me. I’m glad to have Bill Munzig as a provider of raw milk. I can tell that for Bill, farming is not just a way to earn a living, but rather a reflection of a deeply held belief in the importance of healthy food and a healthy lifestyle.–BM: Floyd, VA
First, thanks for all you do to take care of the cows that provide milk for our family. I have a double testimonial from the Spence clan. First, I was diagnosed as “pre-diabetic” last January due to high scores on my A1C levels. I modified my diet by cutting out carbs and sugar, but I also switched from corporate-cow milk to Copper Hill-cow milk, since I’ve read that pasteurization turns milk’s lactose into beta-lactose, which is more readily absorbed into my body (which is the opposite of what I want). One year later and 40 pounds lesser, my A1C levels are back down to “normal.” I attribute a least part of that blood sugar reduction to your milk. Yum.
My second testimonial is for our youngest son, Henry, who has diabetes insipidus, meaning that his pituitary gland does not produce the hormone vasopressin, which regulates his body’s waterworks. Symptoms of his condition are constant thirst and excessive urination. A year and a half ago, before we were able to identify his condition, he lost almost 20% of his body weight due to the fact that his constant thirst blocked out his sense of hunger, wrecking havoc on his appetite. Fortunately, his condition is easily regulated by medication, and his love of your milk has helped him gain back his lost weight (and more) and has visibly improved his overall physical condition.–TS: Check, VA
For Foodies, Too!
January 5, 2014–The health benefits of raw milk have been well documented. Our own doctor praises my family for producing our own food from our garden and milking the cow that gives her raw white gold to us on a daily basis. My four healthy and beautiful children only got ear infections when I bought pasteurized milk from the store when my cow was dry (it’s been three sad months)! But that is not what I want to write about. I have to mention the superior TASTE that raw, non-homogenized milk has that even my young children have noticed. My five-year-old son turned his nose up at the store-bought (Organic) milk for the first month of buying it, claiming it was “weird tasting.” I had to add chocolate to my three-year-old son’s store bought milk for him to drink it! Now I’m no expert or foodie, but my children are right. There is no comparison. Raw milk is a perfect example of truly good food. –Merry (mother of four)
December 12, 2013–Five years ago I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. I was in and out of hospitals for the first two years with on and off symptoms, unable to hold food down, losing lots of blood due to ulcers in my colon. Throughout this experience I refused to take the prescribed medicine because they couldn’t tell my what causes my disease or why the medicine was thought to work on Crohn’s patients. Eventually I learned to control my symptom with diet alone. But I couldn’t always afford to eat clean and an occasional flare up would still happen from time to time. Until I started looking into raw milk. Originally I became interested in this superfood because I was hoping to improve my dental health but I have since discovered it is a great cure for a flare up! Anytime I get symptoms of my disease I run out and buy raw milk and its gone within a half hour. No fatigue, no cramps and no bleeding. If I could keep it in my diet as a regular staple I’m positive I would never have a flare up again, however, it’s illegal to sell unpasteurized milk in my state so I have to cross the state line to get any.–Jen
September 2011–I am a mom of three children and one on the way. I was skeptical on raw milk at one point. My son who was born with a lot of health issues needed something to help “boost” him up. His nutritionist who is a firm believer in all natural, organic stuff… said to try him on Raw Milk. With hesitation, we did. Holy Cow. (pardon the expression). He gained over 2 lbs. in a month, had no colds during that month, and seemed to be feeling better. It seemed to “heal” his gut…and he just started doing better over all. I will advocate for Raw Milk in any way I can. I only buy Raw Milk..and refuse to buy “store bought” milk. It also goes along with my belief of “support your local farmers”. Raw Milk has done so much for my family…and I could not be happier. Are there any bumper stickers out there? Or t-shirts of some kind? I want to spread the word any way I can. I also printed out some of the articles on your website and brought them to my pediatrician. He was dead set against Raw Milk and practically blew up at me for feeding it to my son. Well guess what? My son still drinks it..and will continue to drink it. 🙂 Thank You for such an informational website. Sincerely, Cortney from New York
The following testimonials, down to the point indicated below in red, were collected in support of Family Farms’ Cooperative (FFC) in Michigan, which was targeted by the Michigan Department of Agriculture. You can read more about that situation here and at www.familyfarmscoop.com, where these testimonials also appear. Here, they have had obvious typos corrected for readability but are otherwise unaltered. Some people gave only the screen name they had chosen to use when posting their testimonial to the FFC site.
September 2007—My name is Alyssa Pellicano. I am a 28 year old spastic quadriplegic affected by CP (cerebral palsy) from birth. I use an electric wheelchair for mobility, but I do not have a speech impediment. I have been following the WAPF (Weston A. Price Foundation) recommendations for the use of grassfed meat, raw dairy products and fats exclusively for two (2)+ years.
I was familiar with grassfed products. My mother provided pastured eggs, milk, raw dairy, and bone broths during my childhood years which, even back then, weren’t easy to find here in California. When the dairy my mother bought from was closed down (Alta Dena) we were not as viligent about obtaining those products, but then Sally Fallon’s book (Nourishing Traditions) reintroduced those principles and I have found that my spasticity is much reduced when consuming raw dairy products. I only hope and pray that Organic Pastures, here in California, is able to operate for a long time to come. I also have access now to raw goat milk. We must travel about 5 hours by car to get it, but it is worth it since we buy 4-6 gal. and make kefir, vili, and just enjoy drinking it!
My mother and I each earned a Nutritional Consulting Certificate here in California but we weren’t as impressed with their more general curriculum as we are with the books we have read that the Weston Price Foundation has recommended along with some books on biodynamic, and organic farming methods from Acres USA. From the principles of Rudolf Steiner we have become convinced that our health is directly related to the food we eat and that food is only as good as the soil in which it was grown.
I believe some of the principles in Nourishing Traditions are, indeed, life saving. We have been maintaining good health on the Nourishing Traditions way of eating. Neither I nor my mother are on any conventional drug therapy of any kind! I say that especially, because my spastic quadriplegic peers, who also depend on wheelchairs for mobility, are on an average of 18 different medications! Some necessary, yes, but many could be eliminated if their diets were of better quality.
Thank You, everyone, who work diligently at keeping real food available and obtainable.
So you can imagine that I was aghast to learn that the Michigan agriculture people have been harassing the Family Farms Coop members. Do they expect us to go back to the toxic stuff that they endorse, to drink milk from sick and overmilked, hormone-stuffed cows? There’s no way I will put Julia back on that stuff.
As any parent knows, when one’s child’s welfare is at stake, laws are secondary. I consider myself a law-abiding citizen, and I am a dues-paying member of the cow-sharing program. But I would beg, borrow, or steal raw milk for Julia if I had to. I would drive to the side of a country road at midnight to obtain the milk she needs–if I had to.
Thank goodness there are honest and caring farmers like that one who saved a little boy’s life in the 1920s, and like Richard Hebron and his colleagues today. —Juliasmom
February 5, 2007—I am writing to you on behalf of Family Farms Coop and my family who are customers of theirs for almost two years. The milk, eggs, meat and other products we buy every month provide my family with the quality of food I can’t get anywhere else. The food I buy is of the highest quality, grown without the pesticides, herbicides, steroids and antibiotics that plague our commercially sold foods. The purchase of this quality food, which my family and I consume is one of the most important decision I make for us. I want to thank Family Farms Coop for their commitment to providing the best quality food their customers. —bat
February 5, 2007—When my son’s school therapists and some other family and friends suggested that my son was displaying symptoms of Asperger’s syndrome and ADHD. I began to research information on the Internet. I came across a study that maintained that Asperger’s/ADHD are helped by consuming raw milk. I decided to purchase a cow share and try this with my son. Within two weeks, his therapists both asked me what changes we had made at home because he was a completely different person. He was more focused in his therapy sessions, he now made eye contact for the first time and he was not flapping his arms while he walked. He was actually able to sit still. They continued to see improvement in him until one month I had been unable to pick up my raw milk. He went without it for close to three weeks. Again, his therapists came to talk to me and mentioned that he was again very unfocused and more difficult to deal with. Once he was back on the milk, everything was fine again. The son of a friend of mine had a severe allergy to milk. I mentioned to her that the research I found indicated that, in fact, people are not actually allergic to milk but to pasteurized milk. She asked me if I would let her have some of my milk so she could test it on her son. He had absolutely NO reaction to the raw milk. It should be our human right to determine what we want to eat for ourselves and our family’s health especially when we are talking about food that is in the natural state that God intended it to be. Many foods have been altered from their natural states in the name of health, but, in fact, we are paying a high price in terms of health in this country because of it. Processed foods and pesticide-laden foods are killing us and we should have the right to unprocessed, whole, natural foods to restore ourselves to health. And we should certainly have the right to drink our own milk from a cow that we have purchased legally. It would be a terrible travesty to allow people to suffer ill health in the name of government control/”protection”. —Michelle Peters, North Aurora, IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 30, 2007—I was horrified when I heard that search warrants had been obtained by the MDA to seize dairy products and business related articles from a farmer, Richard Hebron, who is an American dedicated to run a business of providing wholesome foods to his customers. I became interested in the ill effects of pasteurization when my infants had difficulty digesting milk based formula’s and again when my older son developed skin rashes that the Dr. told me was a result of a milk allergy. Pasteurization destroys valuable enzymes, diminishes vitamin content, denatures fragile milk proteins, virtually destroys B6 and B12 and kills beneficial bacteria. Pasteurization is associated with allergies, tooth decay, colic in infants, growth problems, ear infections in children, osteoporosis, arthritis etc…. My first two children that have been raised on hormone laden, pasteurized milk had problems with recurrent ear infections, milk allergies, skin rashes, and colic. Since we have disregarded much of the FDA and media instructions as to what is healthy for our families, our family’s health has improved tremendously. We haven’t had to go to the Dr. for illness in 3-4 years. In fact I can’t even remember taking my now 4 year old, 3 year old, and 18 month old in for any MD visits other than yearly check ups which bring reports of good health. My 18 month old who has been raised completely on raw milk has been the most healthy and contented baby I have had. It is a wonderful feeling to know, that as a mother, I am providing the best food for my family in raw milk, organic meats, and organic fruits and vegetables. We visited a dairy in Indiana for a family field trip a few months ago. This dairy farm provided milk for Deans and boasted some 40,000+ cows for milking. I saw these cows live in no more than a 20 foot stall with little exercise, no direct sunshine, and fed some brown mixture of food that contained soy and various other “health foods.” The dairy farm claimed that their cows were not given growth hormones but that their milk was mixed with milk from farms who do inject their cows with hormones. What a relief I felt knowing that my family drinks milk from cows that walk in the sunshine, graze in green pastures, and eat the greens of the earth, the way God intended our food to be…natural and pure with the greatest health benefits for mankind. —Sincerely, Mary Seguin Des Plaines, Illinois
January 30, 2007—Growing up in a small community years ago, the family dairy farm was almost essential for everyone in the neighborhood. I believe that value should be no different today…The value of local hard working families that have the opportunity to provide life-giving food & nutrition to those who wish to consume it. The consumption of whole, raw & natural food is & should always be the right of any individual-not to mention all the great health benefits that follow this lifestyle. Being able to partake of pure raw milk coming straight from its source should always be a privilege to any persons own choosing & is his or hers own personal right. In conclusion we willingly support the FFC & whole-heartedly desire the continuation of what they represent. It is of utmost importance to us & our family. —Brian & Melody Stutzman Middlebury, Indiana
January 30, 2007—No credible expert would even consider making the argument that pasteurized milk is nutritionally superior to clean raw milk. A knowledgeable mother would never heat her breast milk before feeding her children, and when young calves were fed pasteurized cow’s milk, they did not thrive and often died before maturity. Several years ago, we deliberately sought out a local source of clean, pasture-fed raw cows milk, the healthiest type of cow’s milk that we are aware of. At Family Farms Cooperative, our search ended, and we have consistently consumed clean raw milk of the highest quality ever since. —The Kavanaugh Family, Chicago, Illinois
January 30, 2007—My family and I have been enjoying the healthful, clean, fresh farm products from the Hebrons and the other member farmers of Family Farms Co-op for over a year. We are all in robust good health. My kids NEVER get sick. My husband and I have energy and feel healthy too. This is all due in part to the food we choose to nourish ourselves with. We don’t eat junk. But, beyond that, we eat the foods that the Family Farms Co-op offers. We eat almost daily: raw milk, homemade yogurt I make from the milk, pastured eggs, raw honey, excellent grass-fed beef, pastured chickens, chicken feet…(to make chicken stock–sounds gross but is in fact excellent). It’s such a cliché to say you are what you eat, but that saying really is true. You eat junk and you will have junky health. You eat animal products raised in humane and clean ways and you will have good health. The thousands of years of humans eating this way proves that. I’m going to repeat that because I think some common sense and simple wisdom gets too easily lost in all of our modern, scientific thinking. People from all over the world have been eating this way for THOUSANDS of years. Thousands. The assumed health problems associated with the consumption of raw milk just aren’t there. Distillery dairies during the last part of the 19th century and early 20th century created disease infested milk, from diseased cows, handled by diseased people. Yes, people got sick from this milk. Children were hurt by this milk. It was bad. Clean, registered raw dairies, on the other hand, provided good healthy milk to people and there were no problems. Instead of ensuring that all dairies would follow strict guidelines of cleanliness and safe handling practices, the government push went towards pasteurization. So now instead of having clean raw milk easily available for everyone, we have a de-natured milk supply. Is everyone aware of how much Vitamin C is killed during the pasteurization of milk? I’ve read that it’s equivalent to the whole citrus crop in the U.S. Isn’t that remarkable? I didn’t even know that milk contains Vitamin C. Raw milk still does. Raw milk also has enzymes that help it be easily digestible–that too is destroyed through pasteurization. My family has never gotten sick drinking raw milk. We’ve never gotten sick eating the good beef, eggs and chickens we get from the Hebrons. We value this food. We value these farmers. I’m still in shock, as is everyone I tell the tale too–and I tell it far and wide–that the Hebron’s farm and truck were searched and their products taken away. Really? I mean it’s just remarkable that any government agency would interfere with their right to sell food. It’s food. Food. I hope that the powers-that-be will do just a modicum of research and see that what the Family Farms Co-op does is help people keep their families healthy. They are doing a wonderful thing by selling their farm products, and I feel very lucky here in Illinois that they deliver to our state. The family farm itself is an amazing and fast vanishing commodity. It’s awful to think of an honorable way of life as a commodity and yet the farm itself and our link to the land is being controlled more and more by big agri-business, and so the Hebrons and the way of life they represent is a competing force. I once spoke with Annette Hebron for a half hour about making chicken stock. She was gracious enough to walk me through it and offer ideas about it and share her cooking wisdom with me, the novice stock maker. That has real value. The Family Farms Co-op is connected to the land and animals in real ways and we, their customers, are connected to them. Thanks Family Farms Co-op for all of the good work you do. We here in Illinois really appreciate it. —Laura Gallagher Arlington Heights, IL
January 29, 2007—Thank you for providing my family with the opportunity to have access to raw milk products. There are many reasons why I believe that raw dairy is the best choice for my family. I believe it to be the healthiest choice. I believe that it is a better choice for our environment. I believe in supporting the hard working farmers who fight the fight to provide us with these products. I believe in respecting animals. I could go on and on… Recently our entire family of six had some allergy testing done. The results clearly showed that five of the six members of our family have serious sensitivities to conventional dairy, the exception being RAW DAIRY. For me, it became even more clear how necessary it is for my family to consume these products. I simply do not know what we would do if we were denied access to this vital part of our diet. I have had he opportunity to drink raw milk from many different places and I believe that family farms offers the highest quality of milk that I have ever had. Beyond all of the other reasons we also think that it tastes great! —Thank you, Kelly Henry
January 29, 2007, From: Diet and Nutrition by Rudolph Ballentine, M.D. Pages 128-130, “Pasteurized, Homogenized and Raw” The need to preserve milk so that it can be supplied to the large urban areas in America has led to almost all dairy products being pasteurized. This is also intended to destroy those bacteria in milk which might cause disease. The pasteurization process, however, heats milk to only 145 degrees F (62C) for thirty minutes or to 161F (72C) for fifteen seconds. As a result, some bacteria remain; and the very important question of viral growth in the milk is still a subject for study. Not only does pasteurization fail to destroy all the microorganisms that are present, but it apparently alters the milk in such a way as to render it difficult to digest. This may be due to a partial alteration or denaturation of the protein in it. In large protein molecules, the amino acid chain is coiled or bent into limbs; these in turn fold upon each other in intricate but very important ways. The folding and coiling is maintained by relatively weak bonds between the amino acids. These bonds must be strong enough to hold the molecule’s shape, but not so strong as to make it rigid, for the huge protein molecules often depend for their function on the ability to change their shape. These delicate limbs which shift are very fragile, and heat can alter them. Then the shape of the molecule is changed and its ability to function is impaired. This is called “denaturing” the protein, i.e., its basic nature is disrupted. If too many of the weak bonds are broken, the complex molecule collapses into a broken tangle which may present great difficulties for the digestive enzymes, which are hard put to “get a handle on it” so as to break it down. In this case, further heating may, under some circumstances, complete the denaturation to the point of breaking it into shorter chains, or even down to a single amino acid links, in which case digestion is actually facilitated. Something of this sort may happen with milk. Experiments have shown that when milk is partially heated (pasteurized) it tends to coagulate into a tight mass when exposed to stomach acid. Many dairy farmers know from experience with their children that pasteurized milk constipates them whereas raw milk does not. If pasteurizing milk tangles the large and complex coils of the protein molecule, making them difficult to digest, boiling it breaks it down more completely. Fifty years ago it was observed that children who were given milk that had been quickly brought to the boiling point and cooled were healthier and gained more weight than those taking pasteurized milk. In any case, boiling the milk is a much more effective means of sterilizing it. In India where there are thousands of years of experience with milk in the diet, it is never taken without boiling it first, despite the fact that the cows are often cared for personally. Moreover, it Switzerland, another country with a long history of dairying, at the famous Bircher-Benner Clinic where raw food is stressed, boiled milk is nevertheless given to patients, even though fresh raw milk is available. Some states have provision for certifying dairy herds to produce raw milk for human consumption, and such “certified raw milk” is available in many areas. The health of the herd should be carefully considered, however, since many dairy animals are raised on feeds grown on poor soil and are kept “healthy” through the use of chemical additives. To drink the milk of such an animal is unwise. Boiling raw milk will sterilize it without necessarily destroying its nutritional advantages. Certainly fresh raw milk which has been brought to a boil has a more appealing taste than ordinary pasteurized, homogenized milk.” My experience with raw milk from the Family Farms Cooperative has been a very positive one. They have exemplified high standards from the feeding and care of the cows to the bottling and selling. The milk is delicious, and has proved much easier to digest than the pasteurized milk. I am appalled at the MDA’s “sting operation” tactics and unfair treatment of the Family Farms Cooperative as well as the disruption of the business and home-life of an honest, hard-working, conscientious family. It is our right as citizens to be able to choose our food source and be able to support our local farmers. I choose to support our local farmer, Richard Hebron and the Family Farms Cooperative in such highly ethical efforts to offer high quality, healthy, delicious raw milk. It is difficult to understand why as yet there has not been an equitable resolution. I am hopeful that this local farmer will be allowed to continue his valuable work soon. —Sincerely, Diane L. Stevens, Saline
January 29, 2007—I am shocked at what transpired on October 13, 2006 to a farmer, Richard Hebron, while he was en route to deliver milk and various other products. Is this a free country? I believe Mr. Hebron is meticulous in meeting the requirements of a “Cow Share” agreement. He is committed to discharging his obligations to provide those of us who have been extremely happy to buy “Cow Shares” with a healthful, clean, nourishing product. He and others in the Family Farms Cooperative are hard working American citizens who just wish to earn an honest living. They have been treated as if they are drug dealers. I believe the MDA implemented a wrongful act. The questions about his products could have been addressed by simply sitting down with Mr. Hebron and/or other members of the Family Farms Cooperative. I believe it is shameful that in a FREE COUNTRY we are not respected and left with some amount of dignity before a government entity drops down upon us and confiscates all of our products, computers, and other personal property. There was no reason to give Mr. Hebron or other members of the Family Farms Cooperative the extreme stress that they must have felt after this attack on their dignity and their livelihood. I have owned a “Cow Share” for almost two years. I have never felt healthier. I have not had any incidences of illness from this extremely healthy, beneficial, clean and natural product. It is God’s creation without any tampering. What on earth is the matter with us that we think food can only be good for us after we tweak it, boil it, add preservatives, pasteurize it, irradiate it, and so on. PLEASE DO NOT TAKE MY GOD GIVEN RIGHT TO OWN A COW SHARE AND TO DRINK RAW MILK AWAY FROM ME. RAW MILK IS GOOD FOOD. RAW MILK IS EXCELLENT FOR HEALTH. I NEED MY RAW MILK IN ORDER TO STAY HEALTHY AND TO FEEL GOOD. IF THIS IS INDEED A FREE COUNTRY, I BELIEVE I SHOULD HAVE THE RIGHT TO CHOOSE THE FOOD I WANT TO PUT INTO MY BODY. —Joyce Sheets Arlington Heights, IL
January 28, 2007—To whom it may concern, I am writing in support for Richard R. Hebron and his family of Family Farms Cooperative. I have read the pros and cons to this issue and have come to the conclusion that this is an issue of” choice and consumer rights”. I am not a dairy scientist; my wife and I are consumers of this milk and dairy products. We are into health and wellness; to be into health and wellness, you try and eliminate all things in your diet and your family’s diet that may contribute to illness and diseases. We drive 38 miles a week one way to pick up our milk. We could just buy organic pasteurized milk locally but it is not the same quality and does not contain the critical enzymes needed for our health diets. We trust the Hebron’s that they are delivering a product that meets our objective. People talk about real milk like it is something new. That if you drink it, you will die. Like it never existed before. Before 1862, when French scientist Louis Pasteur and Claude Bernard first preformed the first pasteurization test, believe it or not, people were drinking real milk. I would bet there were the same discussions then as there are now that if the milk could just remain fresher longer (refrigeration??? affordably made available to the general public in 1920 – almost 60 years later) and if there was better care in sanitation at the farms, there would not be a need to pasteurize this milk. I believe the Hebron’s insure that both of these criteria are met and that there is no need for pasteurization or homogenization. As we know, pasteurization is a process to kill the harmful bacteria that may be found in real milk. Two issues raised: that it may not successfully kill pathogens in the milk and that it does kill enzymes. Again, it goes back to the handling of the milk at the cow and the cow’s cleanliness and health as the real milk goes from the cow to the gallon jug. Just keep the cow healthy and clean; and the mechanisms from the cow to the bottle clean and bacteria free. We believe the Hebron’s meet these criteria. The same risks as everyone is claiming existed then and still exist today. It is a matter of trust. I know the farmer, I know the milk that is coming from the farmer and I know where the farmer lives. I also know of the risks. It is my choice that I am drinking this milk. The claims that have been made that say1000 or so people were made sick by contaminated milk from so and so farmer will always be there. And the decision on the table is to shut down all ability to purchase real milk from all farmers in this state. Personally, I got sick eating at a fast food restaurant – there was no discussion about shutting down all fast food restaurants. In fact there have been cases of whole restaurant patrons of the day that have been sick due to something like bacterial tainted coleslaw. Do we shut down all restaurants that serve coleslaw? Do we eliminate the ability to purchase cabbage? No, we don’t. My whole family other than me was sick once by drinking apple cider – I purchased a jug from a local mill and everyone drank it before I could get a glass. The cider was tainted with e coli bacteria that is possible to be in real ciders. Do we shut down all cider mills in this state? No, we work to insure that all portions of the food chain remain bacterial free and harmless to the consumer. In summary, these are my rights and my choice. If I want to consume real milk, I know the risks and it should be my choice if I choose to do so – not my Federal or State mandate that I can’t. Sincerely, Thomas and Kathe RayNovi, Michigan
January 28, 2007—My name is Beverly Cataldo, I am a citizen of the state of Michigan and of these United States. I believe it is my constitutional right to be able to buy organic food, produce, milk, butter, cream, eggs and meat from any local farmer or rancher in the state of Michigan or surrounding states. I am a citizen and I will support the local farmers and ranchers. I believe it is called capitalism in a free market society. It is my duty to myself and my family to purchase the very best food for our bodies without the interference of government telling me what, when, where, and how to purchase. As an educated consumer I find the quality of the products received from the Family Farm Co-op to be of the highest quality, and I will continue to purchase products as I need and want them. —Beverly Cataldo
January 28, 2007—We have been customers of the Family Farms Coop for several years. We truly appreciate the opportunity to purchase their high quality natural farm products. The products we purchase (milk, eggs, sausage) are pure, great tasting and most importantly do not have added hormones, preservatives or additives which means better health for us. We no longer have milk allergies because all the enzymes in the milk are still there which greatly aids in its digestion and assimilation in the body. We believe in supporting local farmers because of the positive effect it has on our local economy, and for the fair competition it provides to larger retailers to maintain high quality products. In our dealings with the Family Farm Coop, their products and services have always been excellent. It was very disturbing to hear of the way in which the MDA confiscated their products and equipment. We believe they should have been treated with more respect, not like criminals. If the MDA’s true purpose is to secure a healthy food supply for the people of Michigan, then their concern regarding the Family Farms Coop could have easily been alleviated by testing the products in question. The Family Farms Coop offers the people of Michigan some of the healthiest farm products available. Do not defeat your own true purpose by taking these products away. —Sincerely, Duane and Mary Stirnemann
January 28, 2007—We have been drinking raw milk from Richard Hebron’s farm for over two years. Our family is healthier than ever! Given the fact that raw milk is sold in other states and farmers are allowed to drink their own raw milk, we can’t understand why there is an issue in Michigan or why anyone would want to treat a farmer like Richard in such a disrespectful way. Good grief, given the state of Michigan’s economy why in the world would anyone want to make it difficult for someone like Richard to be in business. Please help to correct the injustice of this situation. —Sincerely, Jeannette Jackson, MBA (University of Michigan) Director, Transforum Consulting, Inc., Ann Arbor MI
January 28, 2007—I have been ordering raw dairy products from Family Farms’ Cooperative for some time now and I am very grateful for the quality product they provide. I am of the opinion that over the last century and beyond, big business and government have had an extremely negative effect on the quality of food that arrives at our table. However well intentioned the efforts might have been the outcome is that we are eating food tainted with chemicals, and processed in such a way that the nutritional elements the body depends upon to keep itself healthy, have been, at the very least, impaired. As an American citizen I demand the right to place into my body the kinds and types of foods I see fit, without the interference of state or federal government. I fear we have all become too complacent with the commoditization of our food supply as brought about by big business’ interest in the bottom line. Pasteurization is a tool that turns a living gallon of milk with finite shelf life into a dead, bar-coded, pale, chalky, shadow of its former self. This manipulation is what transforms food into a commodity for sake of the shelf life it provides. I never cease to be amazed at the expiration dates on a carton of pasteurized milk, which is clearly a biologically dead substance as it can sit on the shelf for such a long period of time before souring. If small local farms like Family Farms’ Cooperative, are not allowed to deliver what has been a human staple since time began what will become of us? I believe we will be much more than diminished we will lose one of our last links to natural nutrition and that simply cannot be allowed to happen. This is important! I have been indoctrinated into the general cultural beliefs about pasteurization that we all share, additional research and an open mind have changed my opinion in these matters. I think it fair to say that the general populace has grown up accepting these notions without ever really checking into the matters for themselves. I know the general population fears raw milk and they are free to not drink it, please allow me the freedom to continue drinking it as I see fit. If nothing else, if State laws can allow the trafficking of tobacco and alcohol, substances that are clearly counter-productive to health, than surely raw milk can be given a pass. The State of Michigan’s handling of this situation has been questionable. I realize the motivation for the State’s actions is to protect the public health and that is truly a noble ambition but I think the big picture is missing the defining elements of this situation. Richard Hebron was delivering me dairy products from a cow I own, this was not a public transaction and no one buying raw dairy products from the Hebrons was engaged in a public transaction. Plainly put, all involved were consenting adults. The State should be held accountable for the manner in which their “investigation” was conducted, which was un-necessarily interruptive and intimidating. The Hebrons and their Family Farm should be reimbursed for the time and materials the State has taken from them. —Sincerely, Scott LaFond, Royal Oak, MI
January 28, 2007—I have recently become a member of the Family Farms Coop and in the two weeks time that I have participated, I can already say that their service is invaluable to me. I’ve spent literally hours reading about the benefits of consuming raw dairy and meat from pasture fed animals. This is how farm animals were meant to be raised, not in huge mass production farms where the animals aren’t able to do what is natural for them…graze in the open fields and instead giving them growth hormones and antibiotics because they are sick from the methods in which they are raised. It just makes sense to support local farming which benefits the farmers, the animals, the environment and ultimately the consumer. I admit that until this year I had my eyes closed to the seriousness of the issues of agriculture and how the food I put on my family’s plate got there. This year I will buy organic produce from local farms and continue to buy dairy and meats from the coop. Thanks to Richard and Annette, I am able to provide better nutrition for my family…even conveniently because they will deliver these whole foods to where I live. I am very grateful to have that option, as I realize not every person has the ability to get these products so close to home. My only regret is that I didn’t do this sooner. — Sincerely, Sherry in Dexter, MI
January 28, 2007—To: Michigan Department of Agriculture: I have been purchasing raw dairy products and grass- fed meat from family farms co-op and specifically from Richard Hebron for almost three years. I am very satisfied with the quality and taste of these products. I am also convinced that raw, grass-fed and non-homogenized dairy products are healthier than pasteurized, grain-fed and homogenized dairy. I can cite many reasons, but I will only briefly cite the rationale for choosing non-homogenized milk over homogenized. When milk is homogenized the milk fat is put in colloidal suspension by making the milk fat particles microscopic. After homogenization the milk fat does not rise to the surface. The milk fat is distributed evenly throughout the milk. However, studies indicate that these microscopic particles of milk fat pass from the intestine directly into the blood stream and tend to contribute to clogged arteries. Unhomogenized milk’s fat particles are large so they must be digested before what is left can get into the blood stream. As a citizen of the “land of the free” I feel that I should have the right to make an intelligent decision on what kind of food my family and I should eat. Isn’t that part of what America is all about? Richard Hebron truly believes in what he is doing and receives satisfaction in providing his customers with food they believe in. Compare this belief with giving grass-eating animals so much grain (to fatten them up quicker) that antibiotics have to be added to the feed so the animals won’t get sick. Here there is only a belief in profit. If Mr. Hebron’s foods are not significantly better than supermarket foods, eventually his business will fold. However, if they are significantly better than supermarket foods, then you may be trying to block the wave of the future. Let the American consumer decide. Thank-you. —Vyto Stanevicius, Chicago IL
January 28, 2007—Dear Richard & Annette, When will we have access to your products? We have been purchasing your products for a number of years and then in October 2006 everything ended. The reason we need you is because we have made a decision as a family to eat as healthy as we possibly can, especially our grandchildren. After we weren’t able to get the Family Farm Coop milk for our two-year-old grandson, we were forced to buy Pasteurized, Organic Whole Milk at the local grocery store. After the first gallon he developed an allergy to the milk (throwing up five minutes after drinking it). We are looking forward to a time when we can get these products back into our diets! We want to eat free-range eggs that we can trust have not been infused with all kinds of pesticides and antibiotics. We want our meat to be the same and we need access to unpasteurized milk. We can’t understand why a governmental agency stepped in to interdict what we feel is our right to buy the best food we possibly can for our family. We miss you; please let us know if there is anything we can do to help you through this very difficult period. —Joe Romanowski, Arlington Heights, IL
January 28, 2007—To Whom It May concern, I would like to give my testimony on how raw milk has helped me. Prior to drinking raw milk, I would experience abdominal crampings, bloating and constipation when I would drink pasteurized milk. Since I have been drinking raw milk, I don’t experience any discomfort what so ever and it has regulated my intestinal system as well. I also have fibrocystic breast tissues and since I have been drinking raw milk, the fibrous tissues have also disappeared. The raw milk taste better than the pasteurized milk sold in the store. We are very thankful for Richard and Annette for making raw milk available to us to buy. This is a free country and therefore it is wrong to prohibit selling raw milk to those who want to buy them. It is the healthiest & delicious form of milk we have ever tasted. We support small local farms who care about people’s well being and we appreciate their dedication. —Sincerely, Vangie Rivera
January 28, 2007—I have been drinking raw milk for over three years now. I noticed over time that the general stiffness, especially in my lower back, began to disappear. I was amazed and so grateful. Organic, pasture raised, raw are the words that describe the foods I eat. It’s the small local farms that make these foods available to me. Thank God for these farmers for we will not survive without them. — Suzanne Smucker
January 28, 2007—We are writing this testimonial in hopes of supporting and sustaining the Family Farms operation. We feel it is important to mention that we have come to depend upon the quality of raw dairy. We have realized tremendous health benefits after enjoying these products for over ten years. The milk, cream, butter, yogurt and cheese are always fresh, tasty and have never caused any ill effects. We believe that it is our right to choose the type of food and drink that we consume. We understand that buying cow shares is an effective way to participate in the ongoing market for raw dairy. We have been very pleased with the services provided to us. We wish to continue to take part in the growing demand for these nutritious products. We insist upon keeping this market alive for those individuals who elect to follow this healthy diet. If it weren’t for the availability of raw dairy, we would not consume the commercial alternative. We don’t consider homogenized milk to compare in quality or in nutrition. Research has shown that there are many negative effects that arise from the consumption of processed dairy. We do not wish to be among the statistics of people who become ill and sluggish from its harmful properties. Another factor that promotes health is the cow’s environment. They are allowed to graze in pastures and to consume a diet more natural to their species than those cows that are raised on commercial farms. Logically, a cow’s diet will ultimately affect the outcome of its milk. It is therefore critical that the cows be permitted to thrive in harmony with their existence. We have come to consider raw dairy as an important part of our diet. We depend upon the health benefits that are realized by consuming these delicious and nutritious products. It is our determination to ensure that these small family farms continue to exist and to support the raw dairy community for years to come. —Sincerely, Todd and Debbie Fingerman
January 28, 2007—I would like to express support for Family Farms Cooperative and the fresh, pure food our family obtains through the coop. My children, ages 10, 7 and 4, are the healthiest they’ve ever been since our family switched to raw milk three years ago. The youngest one, who has drunk more raw milk relative to her lifespan, has had far fewer ear infections than her elder two siblings did during their early years. All three children are robust and rarely go to the doctor beyond their annual checkups. I’ve noticed that I experience fewer yeast infections than I did while drinking pasteurized milk. Beyond the health benefits, which are numerous, our family enjoys other benefits as well. We have a personal relationship with “our” farmer and know that we are helping to directly support a local family farm. We know that our food has been produced by people who care deeply about the land and the animals with which they work. We are proud to support a local food system rather than a distant agribusiness corporation which sees us only as “consumers,” not fellow human beings. As a citizen of the United States of America, I take my right to choose what I put in my body seriously. I hope that the state and national departments of agriculture also respect that freedom. —Shana Milkiee, Ann Arbor, MI 48103
January 25, 2007—About 3 years ago, my 11 year old daughter started having health issues. It took a whole year of degrading health to find a diagnosis of ulcerative colitis. After following the advice of traditional doctors and some very potent prescription drugs for another year and seeing no improvement and even further degrading health even after dosage increases, and culminating the year with a blood transfusion for her, my husband and I decided to pursue another path. She only weighed 75 lbs now. She looked like someone out of the Holocaust. I started searching for a natural way to heal ulcerate colitis. My searches lead me to the Weston Price Foundation, Doctor Mercola, and various other organizations for natural food sources. One food kept coming up repeatedly, raw milk. I was intrigued. I researched the milk industry, starting with the removal of hormones and antibiotics, as the Oberweise Dairy is famous for, I then learned of the damage the whole pasteurizing and homogenizing process does for the once healthy milk product. Could processed milk be causing my daughter’s illness causing her to be lactose intolerant? Causing her intestine to not function or absorb food properly? Processing milk turns it into an allergen. We have been drinking raw milk for nearly 2 years now. To this day, her health issues immediately reverse to a flare-up (bloody diarrhea) when she has store bought milk. This raw milk has done wonders in providing a start in the healing process of her intestines. I read that doctors in the olden days (before Louis Pasteur ruined milk) fed patients with this trouble a diet of a gallon of milk a day and total healing occurred. She is 14 now, she has been prescription drug free for over a year. We are still in the process of restoring her health. She only weighs 80 lbs. and needs to gain about 20 more. I feel raw milk, raw cream, grass-fed beef and pastured poultry and free range eggs (all hormone and antibiotic free) have been some of the most important real foods I can give my daughter to restore her health. I feel good about feeding my family these foods. My family of 7 has been healthier since we have started drinking the raw milk. Less colds and flu and faster recoveries when a germ does get through. I am concerned that my rights are being challenged. My right to feed my family as I see fit. I pulled up the Declaration of Independence on the Internet today. Wow, it is more powerful than I remember when I studied it in school. I feel I need to paste an excerpt into this letter. With all the special interest groups, ethnic groups, drug companies, food companies and government influences in the United States, the peoples rights, my rights, are being taken away every day…while our military fights on foreign shores for others to have rights, ours are being taken away. Please read the following excerpt “WE hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness—That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed, that whenever any form of Government becomes destructive of these Ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its Foundation on such Principles, and organizing its Powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient Causes; and accordingly all Experience hath shewn, that Mankind are more disposed to suffer, while Evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long Train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a Design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future Security. ” May be it is time to dump some government agencies who think they know best. Communism isn’t that far away in America if we continue to let Government be so big. As a family that lives in “suburbia” not by choice, but by life’s dictates, I have already been “zoned” out of a farm zone in which I could raise my own food. Do not take away my right to lawfully and legally purchase the foods I wish to feed my family. Someone should look up the word liberty in the Webster Dictionary. The Michigan Department of Agriculture has wrongfully interfered with the liberties of the Hebron family and the other families in the farm cooperative, and the families who are supplied with their wholesome foods. From all the information I have read, you (and your spy) knew they were abiding within the law and you chose to pursue a dead end matter anyway. You have cheated them of their income and caused undue stress to these families by dragging this issue into a new year. They have done nothing wrong and this case should be dropped immediately. —Donna French, Elgin IL
January 25, 2007—Yes, we love our raw milk and truly love the health benefits of receiving such high quality milk. My husband grew up on a farm and drank raw milk daily. To this day, he is very healthy and has lived a very athletic and dangerous life without breaking any bones. Luck or good bone density? We want the same for our growing family. If we lived in the country, we would have our own cow. Owing a cow share helps us to stay connected to farms and the wonderful foods produced by our farmers. We fully support our local farmer’s markets, CSA’s and owing a part of a dairy cow strongly supports raw milk!!!! I would not want my children to not have the opportunity to experience REAL MILK. —Judy
January 24, 2007—We are writing to express the serious intent our family has to continue to obtain fresh raw milk from our cow(s) through the Cow Share Program of Family Farms Cooperative. One of our daughters experienced what appeared to be a chronic vaginal yeast infection and continued irritability from the time she was weaned at 9 months of age. She was our most peaceful baby, but from the time of weaning from breast feeding her personality seemed to change almost immediately and soon after she began to have frequent yeast infections. We had put her on a casein-based formula and it never occurred to us nor our physician that she was lactose intolerant. Her constant irritability was a challenge to us all. At two years old we tried options to milk, like soy and rice milk, (all of which she did not like). After that we gave her store bought milk and just assumed our very happy, peaceful little girl was just a difficult child who needed lots of special attention, which we lovingly gave her. By the age of five she began to tell us throughout the day, especially after meals that she had a stomachache. It finally occurred to us she had an allergy to some particular food and I began testing her out with milk. We took her off of all dairy products and within 24 hrs she was no longer complaining about stomachaches. She began to smile more and “lightened up” -to our delight! That same week, a friend told us about raw milk, the importance of consuming the enzymes whole and unbroken, and it’s wonderful affects on the body, especially the gut. She told us about Family Farms Coop and the next week we signed up to obtain our milk through the Cow Share Program. Upon introducing raw milk to her diet we noticed only good things happening with her. She consumed 3-4 cups daily with no stomachaches. Within two weeks we noticed constant rose in her cheeks and 18 months later she has not had a yeast infection (with the exception of one incident after having ice cream at Dairy Queen). She is healthy and we are amazed at what a happy and content child she has become. Honestly, we noticed what appeared to be a major personality change after putting her on the raw milk. Obviously, we know now that it wasn’t a personality change, but the fact she was no longer in constant discomfort. You can see that for this reason alone we want to continue to have access to raw milk. However, our entire family consumes raw milk now as part of our diet and we are very pleased with its nutritional effects on us all. In the last year and a half we have also discovered in Richard Hebron and Family Farms Cooperative farmers with tremendous integrity to whom we are deeply grateful. Not only their milk, but their meat and eggs are of the highest quality, the likes of which we have not found in any grocery store. It would be most unfortunate, if through an unjust law, we would lose our right to obtain raw dairy products of such excellent quality. Furthermore, we consider this an infringement on our rights to choose to do business with such upright and professional farmers. Would that all persons in commerce operated with such integrity. —Respectfully Yours, Francisco D.S Gavrilides, Susan A. I. Gavrilides, Ypsilanti MI
January 23, 2007—I am most proud to say that I have been a member of the Family Farms Co-op over 3 years now. As an educated consumer I am willing to invest my treasures of time and money to support local Michigan farmers. 70% of my food purchases are made directly from local farmers. All milk, beef, pork, chicken, lamb, eggs and produce are purchased from organic or nutrient dense growing farmers. This process requires many hours of planning and driving to pick up my food. It is hours well spent. Not only am I assured that I am getting the highest quality of foods for my family, but I am supporting the local Michigan farmer. I realize that my support of the local farmer is essential to my continued ability to purchase the foods I demand for my family’s good health. I have seen with my own eyes the upgrades to the farms that have been possible because of these direct farm to consumer sales, and I am proud to be a part of it. Family Farms Co-op has been supplying my family with milk and the best tasting beef for years. As an educated consumer I refuse to drink store bought milk and frankly I haven’t eaten a better ribeye steak then those I get from Family Farms Co-op. I will continue to fight for my right to own a cow-share and receive the products produced by my cow and for my right to purchase nutrient dense foods direct from my local Michigan farmer. —Respectfully, Rosanne Ponkowski, Executive Director, Healthy Traditions Network
January 22, 2007—I have been drinking raw milk and eating the meat and eggs that Family Farms provides for two years now. I didn’t know how awful I felt until I started feeling good. The very first week of drinking raw milk, I was amazed at how calm and restored my body felt. I was craving the raw milk so much that I would drink over a gallon a week! I realize now that my body was in desperate need of the nutrients and enzymes given by the raw milk. Thank you Family Farms for continuing to provide this high quality food in spite of difficulty from the government. I am forever grateful! —Sincerely, Emily Cowles, Grayslake, IL
January 22, 2007—My two children, ages 10 and 14, husband and I have been drinking raw milk for approximately 2 years now. I feel fortunate to have found Richard Hebron and Family Farms Coop (FFC) and to know my family is getting the best and highest quality nutrition from the raw milk we drink and from the hormone/antibiotic free meats we get from FFC. We all enjoy the taste, freshness and health benefits of the milk. As a family we are far less ill than the majority of our friends and family around us and I believe that the raw milk we drink is a large part of that. Thank you Family Farms. —Diana Rittenger, Milford, MI
January 22, 2007—I remember growing up in Poland drinking raw milk/dairy from my grand parents farm. I loved their fresh milk and cheese that my grandma used to make. As a child I never had problems with allergies and I was never sick. About 15 years ago, I permanently moved to the United States. Few years later I started developing allergies and sinus problems. Two years ago my dentist recommended dinking raw milk. Since than, I no longer have allergy/sinus problems. My wife and two kids (6 and 3 years old) enjoy the milk and cream too. Now we all enjoy healthy lives and great taste of raw milk and cheese. Thank you Family Farms for your service. —sbrzeski
January 19, 2007—My grandfather drank raw milk and made raw cheese in Switzerland. As a young man, he traveled to Wisconsin and was able to drink raw milk and make raw cheese in the US. My father drank raw milk and made raw cheese in Wisconsin. I drink raw milk and make raw cheese but I do it in Illinois. I much prefer the Family Farms milk and cheese. In fact, no milk or cheese I have ever had has been this outstanding. Our daughter also drinks raw milk and makes raw cheese but she too prefers the Family Farms milk and cheese. With the help of Family Farms, we all would like to keep our family tradition going. Thanks, Alice M. Whaley, Naperville, IL 60540
January 18, 2007—My family and I have been drinking raw milk and eating organic pastured meats and eggs, provided lovingly by Richard and Annette Hebron, for almost two years. The food is always extremely fresh and tastes better than anything we have had before – there is nothing like food delivered directly from the farm. The health benefits from drinking raw milk have been striking – we all have more energy, greatly improved digestion and far fewer illnesses. When we do get an occasional cold, we get over it quickly. We believe the nutrient-rich dairy and meat products are responsible for our family being healthier than ever. My children never liked pasteurized milk and my son was allergic to dairy. Now they both drink the raw milk from the farm and get the necessary nutrients, enzymes and calcium. We are so grateful for Family Farms Coop, and our deepest wish is that they can continue this service of love by contributing to the well being of so many people. Thank you Richard and Annette. —Katarina
January 17, 2007—Since the birth of my daughter I have realized the importance of eating and living healthy. I our society it is easy to make a habit of buying what’s cheapest and most convenient. I have come to understand that these products are the worst you can use and can cause disease and suffering. I have decided that food least touched or manipulated by human hands is the best for my family. This is why I choose fresh, raw far milk for my daughter. Pasteurization kills the living enzymes that allow us to digest milk properly, which in turn causes an allergic reaction, bloating, gas and other illnesses. I have the right to consume pure, untainted food and farmers have the right to produce and distribute these foods! I am absolutely REPULSED that the MDA, IDA and FDA have the audacity to treat honest, good-willed farmers like criminals!!! I support these noble farmers and raw milk 100%. I pray for these farmers’ freedom and also that corruption stops within the food industry. — laurutyte
January 16, 2007—Our family has been enjoying the benefits of farm-fresh raw milk and other dairy products from Family Coop. We are happy to support them and we believe that we are getting best and highest quality nutrition from raw milk and milk products we buy from them. We grew up in Poland and we consumed raw milk and raw dairy products daily. We have never been sick or know of anyone who had any kind of illness which could in anyway be connected to their consumption of raw dairy. We would like to continue serving healthy food to our family, just like our parents did. —Rejmer family, G. Rejmer, Elgin, IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 15, 2007—I have been using the fresh raw farm products for four (4) years from Richard Hebron. If I would not be able to obtain these products, I would be devastated, because they are a huge part of my daily foods. Hopefully, because we live in the free country of America, I have the right to make a choice regarding my use of these fresh raw dairy products. They are so full of enzymes, vitamins and minerals that are otherwise destroyed by heat and pasteurization. Through Richard’s Coop, gives me part ownership of a cow, whose fresh products have truly given me better health and good health is golden. I also have blessed feelings for the small farmer struggling to keep his animals healthy, clean and feed right so we receive the best products possible. I believe Richard Hebron is definitely this kind of farmer and a good person; and thank God for all his efforts plus the hundreds of miles he drives to deliver them to us, cold & fresh. —Jacqueline Kasten, Elgin, IL 60120 [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 15, 2007—Two and a half years ago, after doing a lot of research, I had the privilege of contacting Annette Hebron of Family Farms Coop. She spent a lot of time on the phone with me sharing how the coop raises the grass fed beef, free range chickens and eggs and how the milk was kept raw, in its natural state. This was exactly what I wanted for my family.
As a mother, I spend a lot of time researching food and spend extra money to make sure my family is provided with as much local food as possible. Serving these good foods to my children at a young age, they are able to develop a taste for foods in their truest state. When we have bought pasteurized milk, they, as well as my husband, can taste the difference and they don’t like it.
One day I realized that something besides providing my family with nutritious foods had occurred when we buy our food from farmers we know. My two children made a comment to me that “it is kind of weird to buy our food from the store when we don’t know who made it.” They are growing up in a CSA learning from the farmer who grows our vegetables and is on a first name basis with the farmer that provides our meat, eggs and milk. This is an awesome health education for my children. They feel a connection to their food which I don’t see in a society that is suffering from disease and obesity and consumes food they know absolutely nothing about. My children are able to make educated decisions about the food they are consuming which will help them their entire life.
I feel that milk, like vegetables, was intended to be consumed in its natural state and that like fruits and vegetables, when we start processing them, we take away from what nature intended. I feel very fortunate to have the choice to buy food in a state that I feel is most nutritious. I feel fortunate to know the farmers who are producing our food. They have a sincere interest in providing the highest quality foods because they also know us. I feel fortunate to have met and become a shareholder in the Family Farms Coop. Food is very important to my family and we feel it is our right and privilege to be able to provide a healthier lifestyle for ourselves and our children. Thanks to Family Farms Coop and all the local farmers who help to make this possible for us! — glutenfreemomma
January 14, 2007—To Whom It May Concern: My name is Leslie Kosar, and I am a member of the Family Farms Cooperative, run by Richard and Annette Hebron of Vandalia, Michigan, and a part-owner of the herd of cows which provide milk to the members of the Family Farms Cooperative.
I’ve been serving this lovely, unpasteurized milk and the other animal products provided by the cooperative to my family for more than 4 years now, including my children, who are now ages 10 and 7. At the recommendation of a doctor who practices near me in Chicago, I began serving unpasteurized milk from a Wisconsin farm to my family 5 years ago. The health and welfare of my family has steadily improved from that point. When I did further research to learn of the care that Family Farms Cooperative’s dairy farmer takes with the production of his milk, I happily became a part-owner of the Family Farms Cooperative dairy herd more than 4 years ago, and have been very pleased with my choice. The milk is of very high quality, as tests performed by the Michigan Department of Agriculture since April of 2006 attest.
I’ve been angered, frustrated, and confused at the recent trouble served on Richard and Annette Hebron, and David Hochstetler, the dairy farmer, as they go about their business providing milk and other farm foods to families like mine. It is a violation of my right to choose to consume whatever sort of food I deem best for my family, when you prevent the Family Farms farmers from providing me with the food I have requested from them. And this is done in the interest of my own safety? Then these actions are done in ignorance of the reality that my family is much healthier consuming unpasteurized milk than it was consuming store-bought milk, and in fact, much healthier than our friends who do not consume unpasteurized milk.
If I am willing to shoulder the responsibility of deciding what is best for my family, then I should certainly be free to find, acquire, and consume whatever I choose to consume. I am well aware of the supposed risks involved in drinking unpasteurized milk because I have taken time to study the situation and to weigh the risks and the benefits. In the experience of my family, the benefits of drinking raw milk far outweigh the risks. Since beginning to drink raw milk, we have experienced far fewer colds and had much sturdier bodies and calmer dispositions in our household. My son and my daughter are each the tallest and the strongest members of their respective school classes! We have not had any experience at all of sickness coming from the Family Farms Coop milk and eagerly await the days each month that we pick up our milk. Thanks for your time. —Sincerely, Leslie Kosar, Evanston, Illinois
January 14, 2007— My husband and I have been drinking raw milk for over four years. We have never received a bad batch of milk or experienced any ill effects from the raw milk purchased from Family Farms Coop. To the contrary, we have only experienced improved health benefits from consuming raw milk.
Both my husband and I have European ancestry that for centuries has consumed raw milk products as a major source of their diet. My parents both grew up on a farm and consumed clabbered milk, which is more nutritional and easier to digest than whole milk, on a daily basis until they moved to the United States. Although you can make certain cheeses and yogurt from pasteurized and homogenized milk, it is impossible to make clabbered milk from commercial milk sources. Since I’ve been purchasing raw milk from Family Farms Coop, my mother has passed down recipes for homemade cheese, yogurt and clabbered milk. And since I’ve been consuming these products, my health has improved dramatically.
Another thing I learned from my parents was the beauty of small farming and working in harmony with nature. Animals were treated humanely and received plenty of fresh air and sunshine. Absolutely, nothing was wasted. The humane treatment of animals is what attracted me to the products offered by Family Farms. My husband I have a strong desire to support independent farmers who work so hard to keep up the traditional farming practices that ensure the quality of life for their customers.
To deprive citizens the right to purchase these products that have sustained life for our civilization for centuries and have helped countless people with health issues is criminal and a violation of our human rights to choose our own food sources. I would suggest to our government officials to stop harassing raw dairy farmers and put their energy into studying the health implications of consuming genetically modified organisms before allowing America citizens to unknowingly or unwillingly participate in this unethical and dangerous experiment with nature which has irreversible consequences solely for the benefit of big business. —Sincerely, Janet Carissimi, Woodstock, IL
January 14, 2007—My wife and I began a journey to start improving our health about 1 year ago. We have done a lot of research on what we should be eating and how food is the best medicine. It amazed us how the difficult it is to obtain natural, organic food. The less we process and manipulate our food, the better our body is able to absorb its intended nutrients. And raw milk has been one of the most difficult items for us to find. We were so excited when we found the food items offered by the Family Farms Cooperative, including raw milk. So we signed up and have been delighted ever since. We have found Family Farms Cooperative to offer quality, healthy food items and we believe it is our right to share in the raw milk program. Our hope and prayer is that Family Farms Cooperative is able to continue providing a valuable service for its members for the sake of everyone’s health. —Keith Kiser, Terri Lampman
January 13, 2007—I am writing in the hope that I will continue to be able to obtain the wonderful unpasteurized, unhomogenized milk that I have been enjoying for the past few months. My doctor recommended raw milk products as part of a health recovery diet last summer. I discovered that I could purchase a share of a cow through the Family Farms Coop and pick up my milk right here in Ann Arbor where I live.
Since I added this enzyme-rich, wholesome, nourishing raw milk to my diet, I have been feeling so much better, and I would really hate to lose this important food for my continuing health.
Please consider me and so many others who support and appreciate the people who help us obtain this wonderful healing food. Thank you for listening, —Eden Winter, Ann Arbor MI 48103
January 13, 2007— Dear Sir or Madam, I urge you to allow the sale of unpasteurized or raw milk, specifically our local dairy farmers, to the general public without unduly burdensome regulations. As a consumer, I try to make careful decisions on what I think is best for my health. I have chosen to include raw milk in my diet because I am convinced that research shows carefully produced raw milk is better for my body than pasteurized milk.
I understand the reasons for regulating any food item, and of course labeling and quality requirements are helpful and would be welcome. Yet a blanket prohibition on raw milk seems not only unnecessary, but a disservice to me as a educated consumer. I know what I want, and it has historically been available for widespread consumption. It is no more dangerous to public health than unpasteurized juices or cheeses, both of which are commercially available, and is certainly less dangerous than many medications approved despite their harmful side effects.
With proper bottling and manufacturing guidelines, the availability of raw milk could create new marketing opportunities and contribute not only to better general health, but to economic growth. As a resident of Michigan, I would expect that you would seek to improve the economy by any reasonable means. Renewing a unique aspect of the dairy industry would likely contribute to new jobs and markets. Please carefully consider again allowing the commercial availability of raw milk without the onerous restrictions currently regulating this industry. —Justin Berger, P66373
January 13, 2007—Hello my name is Janis Katz and my family has been drinking raw milk from Family Farms Coop for four years. Before Family Farms Coop I had not had a drink of milk for twelve years because of how it would affect my stomach. I first found our about raw milk through a friend and other member of Family Farm Coop. Much to my surprise when I tried it, it did not bother my stomach at all, and it tasted so good. I have found that I am sensitive to either the pasteurization or the homogenization of milk, or both.
My family whole family also loves the raw milk; all my grandchildren want to drink when they come over is the raw milk, which they call “Grammy’s milk”. When my sixteen-year-old daughter has her friends over I’m always making sure they do not drink all our milk because they love it so much.
Amish people and the dairy farmers have been drinking raw milk with no ill effect. Plus there are also many health benefits to drinking raw milk. When milk goes through the process of being pasteurized it looses a huge percentage of the natural vitamins and minerals it has to help our bodies stay strong and grow. I hope the state of Michigan will leave the raw milk diary farmers alone. I have been healthier and happier ever since I’ve been able to drink milk again, I would not driving distances and pay a lot more for the un-pasteurized milk if it wasn’t important to me and my family. —Thank you, Janis Katz, Brighton, MI.
January 12, 2007—I am writing to lend my support for citizens’ rights to make their own personal decisions regarding nutrition and food and to eliminate restrictions in selecting their chosen sources of food and dairy products, such restrictions being an unconscionable elimination of freedom.
My efforts to gather information regarding health for the purposes of improving the quality of my life cannot be infringed upon. I am committed to support small farms and farmers, the source of wonderfully healthy foods, allowing me to continue on my path of improved health. To have availability of these sources hindered in any way is a dreadful intrusion on my civil liberties and has no place in a constitutional republic form of government. —Joan Hartzell, Sterling Heights, Michigan
January 12, 2007— Prior to 2001, my husband and two children were not getting enough calcium. We are not able to drink conventional milk due to allergies. We would get severe stomachaches from conventional milk. One of the problems we had with conventional milk was digesting it since it lacked the enzymes from raw milk. Since we have been drinking raw milk we are in much better health. Raw milk is in its natural state, so our bodies were able to digest and assimilate it properly with no allergy problems. Another benefit I attribute to raw milk is the great condition of my children’s teeth. We cherish the ability to have the choice of getting raw milk from the Family Farm Cooperative. —Sandra Echevarria DeKalb, IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 12, 2007—Seven years ago, my wife and I began discovering the value of making food choices based on the quality of the food and the resultant quality of our health. Throughout the subsequent years, we have done extensive reading and purposeful research into diet and have made a number of discoveries. Of these discoveries, the consumption of clean, naturally raised and grown foods is paramount.
We consider being part of Family Farms Cooperative cow share program vitally important toward improving the quality of food consumed in our family. Now, after almost two years of consuming raw dairy products we find it unacceptable to consume lower quality foods. The quality of the products from Family Farms is high for obvious reasons. They come from a farmer who understands not only how to milk the cows and process the milk but more importantly, how to raise healthy cows for the ultimate purpose of obtaining food with high nutritional value: clean and as nature intended it to be. Biodynamic farming is in agreement with the laws of nature, the needs of the land, the needs of the animals and the needs of people. When we serve these products to my family, we are assured that they get true, real food, the same food that has nourished the vitality and the physical and mental strengths of people for thousands of years. We cannot settle for anything less.
Why does everything need to be so set against what is normal and natural? Why can we not have the right of making an informed decision about our health and consume untouched and untainted milk? We don’t know the answers to these questions. We are deeply troubled by the events perpetrated upon Family Farms Cooperative which seem to threaten the supply of first quality foods we have come to enjoy.
The belief that raw milk is unsafe is not scientifically based. I and my wife have improved health since we began using raw dairy products. Our now six-year-old daughter was commonly ill prior to us using raw dairy and would sometimes take weeks to recover from a cold. Now she rarely gets ill and recovers in days. Our four-year-old son has been sick two days in the last two years. —Love Pete and Patty
Prov. 16:9—The mind of man plans his way but the Lord directs his steps.
January 12, 2007—For the first 28 years of my life, I ate what the government and food companies told me was a “healthy” well balanced diet. As a child I suffered indigestion, lethargy, irritability, mood swings and learning difficulties. After having my first three children, I observed similar symptoms in them along with behavioral problems.
So I began a quest to find answers to my problems, and this quest led me down the path of studying nutrition. I learned through reading and experimentation that foods have a major impact on our physical, mental and emotional health. I found information about eating food in its natural, unprocessed raw state and learned that many people were able to recover from diseases of all sorts just by changing their diets to include raw food.
The information was compelling and made simple and logical sense to me. So I set out to change the diet of our family to a raw food diet which included raw milk. By changing our diet, we began to experience the benefits immediately. I could face life’s problems and stresses with more focus and less emotionality. My children were calmer and could get along with each other much better. They could focus and learn. However, whenever they cheat by sneaking food off of the diet, it is very noticeable and their behavior becomes uncontrollable. No discipline or other modern Psychobabble parenting technique can change it. We simply have to wait until the drunk wears off and the hangover passes.
For the last 5 1/2 years of consuming this raw food diet including raw milk, I have been able to observe a gradual but continuous miracle of healing in myself and in my children. I feel better today at 43 years old than I have ever felt my whole life. I can stay up till 3:00 a.m. and get up at 7:30 and go all day with my busy family of seven, and then do it all over again. I have been blessed to have 2 more children(we have 5 total) who were conceived and raised on the raw food diet only. What a difference I see in them raised only on raw foods, compared with my first 3 children born and raised on the standard American diet.
I now realize that we have been sold a lie by the government and the food manufacturers for the sole purpose of their financial greed and political lust for power and control over us.
Thanks to the food and medical establishments, mankind is suffering untold harm and death.
It is time for the truth to be told. And that is that the ONLY things which cause disease are toxicity and malnutrition. And these facts are well known by the conspirators who have force-fed us their lies and propaganda. It is NOT and NEVER WILL BE microbes, bacteria or parasites that harm us. It is not raw milk we should fear, but our own government who sleeps with the corporate giants spreading their germs of deception. That is who we should fear.
As a child of God and a sovereign citizen of the United States of America, I have the right to feed myself and my family according to the truth. Raw milk is the most life giving, disease reversing food that the Creator has given to us. No man, institution or government has the right to deny or prohibit us from obtaining and consuming raw milk or any other raw food.
Those responsible for this grave scandal and assault against mankind will have much to be accountable for on the day of judgment before THE ALMIGHTY GOD, Whom these same people reject and deny. —Sheri Giachetto, Fresh From The Farm Co-op, Lemont, IL
January 10, 2007—I have been a member of the Family Farms cooperative for about 6 months now, and I count on the raw milk I receive from my cows each week.
I heard about the coop from a friend who also (unknowingly) sent me on a journey to learn more about farming practices in America and about the food I was consuming prior to now. I have read a number of books and countless articles. After reading The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan (especially the section on Polyface farm) I felt so grateful to have found a source for food from humanely treated, pastured animals; and am especially delighted to receive my milk raw.
I love the taste of the milk (actually everybody I know who has tried it says it tastes better than the milk they were used to.) I am also convinced that I feel better drinking it. I have not gotten the flu this year which is a first, and after changing my eating habits I find I have little interest in junk food anymore!
If our source for raw milk and pastured meat and eggs were taken from us I would feel the loss keenly. I look forward to picking up my order every week and believe everybody in America should have the right to obtain similar products. —Elizabeth Cousino, Ann Arbor, MI
January 10, 2007—There is nothing more important to me, as a mother of two beautiful children, than to be able to provide my family with the healthiest food possible. I consider raw milk to be the most important food they consume.
Since we started drinking raw milk (almost 2 years), my health has greatly improved. We are rarely sick. I used to have every cold that went around – not anymore. Not only is it so much healthier than the milk you buy in the store, but it tastes SO much better! I would not drink milk if raw milk were not available. It is our right to buy raw milk. Consider trying raw milk, I would bet you will never go back to the “other” stuff again! Thank you Richard, and to all those who are involved with Family Farms Co-op. —Jennifer Allen, Farmington Hills, Michigan
January 10, 2007—My name is Kim Patel and I am VERY upset and voicing my concern about the possibility of loosing our raw milk products! With being lactose intolerant, this is the only milk product that I can consume. Even pasteurized, lactose-free milk is ineffective. The reason this raw milk does not cause a problem for my body is due to the fact this milk is NOT pasteurized. Pasteurization kills all the digestive enzymes needed, especially for some individuals, to properly digest milk.
Pasteurization does not prevent problems from occurring in milk. Unfortunately my family suffered greatly from the Salmonella Outbreak that occurred in milk sold at Jewel Stores in the early 1980’s. The irony of this outbreak…it was from pasteurized milk! So do not get a false sense of security that this milk is ‘safer’ and ‘risk free’. In all truth, our raw, un-pasteurized milk is safer, since there is such a quick turn-around time from milking, to local delivery. As soon as mass production of milk is involved, the amount of time for the milk to reach consumers is drastically increased due to pasteurization, packaging and shipment, etc.
It should be my right to purchase the kind of milk I wish to consume; that is most beneficial for my health. Hopefully Richard Hebron and his family will be allowed to continue selling such high quality raw milk products! —Sincerely, Kim Patel , Palatine, IL 60074
January 9, 2007—I have been diagnosed with multiple autoimmune problems for 13 years and have tried, without success, a variety of AMA-approved solutions, which have failed. I am now receiving alternative treatments and was thrilled to find, via Dr. Mercola’s website, Family Farms Coop. All the research I have been doing related to my health issues have culminated in finding healthy food sources, most notably dairy and meat. (I currently buy organic produce locally.) Having had a severe milk allergy these past years, I can now confidently partake of the raw milk that the farmers provide, and my health is improving every day. They are doing a wonderful service to us who are seeking healthy alternatives to “Big Agriculture.” I want to know that the animals are properly cared for under humane and healthy conditions and the resulting products are good for me.
We owe so much to these people. The least the MDA can do is let them continue to provide a service that is so greatly needed by those of us who have health issues. With all the serious health problems plaguing our country today (such as obesity and diabetes), the last thing we need is “dairy police” who interfere with our right to choose what we desire to keep and maintain a healthy lifestyle. If anything, the MDA should take note on how a proper dairy should be run by these wonderful people who are farming the way it was intended. —Kristi Hanna, Naperville, IL
January 9, 2007—My youngest has battled GERD along with recurrent ear infections & urinary tract infections since she was 2 months old. She had started drastically regressing from about 10 months on. She was scheduled for a CAT scan because of a suspicion of a brain tumor. She had low-grade fevers for months that would sometimes spike inexplicably.
We started raw dairy at about 12 months of age. Her recovery has been miraculous. She is a bright, healthy, happy 4 year old who doesn’t even get a cold. Raw dairy has also cured me of my recurrent sinus infections.
God Bless all the wonderful people that put so much of themselves into providing others with health giving food and the amazing selfless animals that provide our nourishment. God has given us the power of choice and we wish to be able to choose what is healthy and good for us on our own. — sneza
January 9, 2007—I have been ordering high quality dairy products from Family Farms for a few years now and have NEVER been disappointed. Their level of quality, dedication, care and devotion shows through in their contact with co-op members.
I have a son who wasn’t able to digest pasteurized dairy, so we got his milk from Family Farms and he has NO problems wit digestion and LOVES his milk every day.
If we are no longer given the option to purchase fresh, healthy, raw milk in this “free” country of ours – I don’t know what would be the next freedom taken away next. Should we all walk around wearing matching uniforms too?
I LOVE having the ability to buy our dairy directly from the source – it’s nice to be able to support the farmer and to know him and his family personally.
I guess if the government takes away our right to choose fresh dairy, that leaves me no other option but to buy my own cow. BOY, will my neighbors hate ME! —Sincerely, Jeannie Krucek, Darien, IL
January 9, 2007— Our family has been enjoying the benefits of farm-fresh raw milk for a year or so now, and we are all healthy and thriving. I come from a farming heritage, and feel blessed to be able to enjoy the same healthful milk that my ancestors lived on. In addition to enjoying the health benefits of raw milk, we love the flavor of fresh un-processed dairy products. Our ten-year-old son is has been healthier this past year then the previous years. He has not even come down with the occasional and welcomed cold. He was unable to digest pasteurized milk, which caused major congestion in his little body. He consumes the raw milk with no difficulties and much excitement. We can no longer and will no longer drink “store bought-pasteurized dairy”…it does not taste or feel good.
I do believe that this is a country where our rights as citizens support our decision to provide whole, nourishing foods for our families….we have made this choice and desire to continue…..
We visited California last spring and were able to purchase raw milk at many large chain grocers from southern to northern California….It is LEGAL in the State of California and We the Citizens of Michigan are in Support of our small farmers who practice traditional farming techniques. After all they have fed this country and many others for centuries….We demand our right to raw milk. Thank You — Lori King, Southfield, Mi
January 9, 2007— I thank the Lord for my health and for the healthy food choices He has provided for me. I was not able to gain weight until I started using raw dairy products and found many other health benefits related to using raw dairy as well as other healthy foods. Thank you to all of your work hard to get me and many others quality foods.—Norman Chiodras
January 9, 2007—I have been a member of Family Farms Cooperative since May of 2005 after attending a seminar presented by Sally Fallon in the Chicago area. There I learned of the benefits of raw milk, and my 10-year-old son has been drinking it ever since.
I am outraged that a governmental agency can dictate what I can or cannot consume. I realize the government needs to protect its citizens against any type of criminal or civil activity perpetrated against the common American citizen. What type of crime did Family Farms Coop commit to be treated like a criminal? Why must the government, particularly the MDA or FDA, try to destroy small farmers who are meeting the demands of their consumers?
Family Farms Cooperative has the full support of all my friends who are members as well as my family. I will continue to support their business in every way that is necessary. —Monica Cheung Stevens, Chicago, Illinois
January 9, 2007—Raw milk contains enzymes which make milk digestible. When you pasteurize milk you destroy the enzymes. This is why so many people have trouble digesting milk. When the law requiring the pasteurization of milk was passed, the technology and hygienic standards were not what they are today. We have been consuming raw milk for the past 6 months and many of our allergies have disappeared and our family’s health has improved. Farmers have been drinking raw milk for eons with no ill effect. A third of the states currently allow the sale of raw milk without any problems. Under the cow share program Richard Hebron has done nothing illegal. We feel strongly that we be allowed to have the freedom to obtain raw milk and that Mr. Hebron and other farmers be allowed to provide it for us. —Yours for a healthy tomorrow, Leonard and Rona Krause
January 8, 2007—I have been drinking your fresh raw milk and eating your fresh meats since the end of last February 2006. In this time many amazing things have happened. I have lost weight, gained energy and seen a remarkable revitalization of my body. I am 53 years of age and pass for far younger. For the first time in my life, my fine thick ‘stringy’ hair has body. It finally looks like hair. That would have been so nice to have as a young adult. My fingernails grow faster than ever, which means that I am healthy and well nourished. I also have a beautiful complexion thanks to the milk.
Of course there are the miraculous cures in my medical history as well. As a baby, I developed a lazy left eye at about six weeks of age. The problem has been there through out my life. One of the first things that I noticed after drinking the milking was that my left eye improved and functioned better. It was becoming a more usable eye. What a difference my life might have been if, I could have drank this milk as a baby or if my mother had drank it while pregnant. Maybe I wouldn’t have had the problem, as I would have had sufficient vitamin A to form and develop.
My kidneys are functioning better and my body is no longer retaining all the water, that it did – a common female problem as we age. My blood pressure is back to normal.
For many years, I have had severe asthma with up $400/mo of medications. The problem has gone partially thanks to the raw milk alleviating my allergies and partially to the elimination from my diet of a chemical food, Diet Pepsi. A phosphoric acid blend sweetened with FDA approved sweeteners, Aspartame and Acesulfame-K.
I am known to fall at times due to orthopedic challenges from old injuries sustained in an auto accident some 30 years ago. The amazing thing now, is that the bruises are gone in about a week compared to months before I started drinking raw milk. My body is finally getting the vitamins A, B, and C along with fresh enzymes that it desperately needs to repair itself.
How might my recovery from the near fatal car crash have been hastened if this wonderful raw milk had been easily accessible to consume?
As to my sacred leased cow, I can only give her my endless gratitude for providing this wonderful substance, her milk. As in India, the cows are sacred for they produce the substance which allow humans to sustain life, we Americans need to respect these animals and allow them lush green pastures to nurture their bodies. They in turn will help us win the war against the chemical food supply.— Sincerely, Patricia Buchanan, Registered Professional Chemical Engineer, State of Texas, License number #78995, West Chicago IL
January 8, 2007—RAW milk and cheese have been such a wonderful thing for our family. Our four children are allergic to dairy and soy and we have struggled to provide them with calcium to make them strong and healthy. I read that RAW milk might not make them sick and decided to give it a try. I am also allergic to milk, so I tried it first. Not only did I not have any reactions, but I now have a great source of necessary vitamins and minerals that our growing children need. We have been drinking RAW milk for almost 2 years without any side affects or allergic reactions. Without Family Farms Co-op we would not be able to get the RAW milk and cheese we need for our children. If we truly live in a free country, we should be able to choose the kind of milk we provide our families. PLEASE don’t take away our right to provide the BEST for our children. —Mary F. Soto, Elburn, Illinois
January 8, 2007—I am very allergic to homogenized/pasteurized milk, which has caused digestive problems. Raw milk has improved my health and cleared up a bad finger that had been bad for 3 1/2 years. I’ve had no problems with raw milk. —John456
January 8, 2007—I am very grateful to Richard and Annette Hebron and everyone that helps make healthy and fresh food products available to me in the city. We live in interesting times where it can require great effort to find and enjoy food in its fresh, natural and healthy state. These efforts need to be supported and respected. Unfortunately, the wisdom that once was common seems at times to almost be lost. Protecting the farmer trying to maintain the integrity of the land, their way of life and the wholesome quality of the products they produce is critical to the well-being of so many. It is my wish that this way of life and the gifts it produces be respected and allowed to flourish. —Betsy74
January 8, 2007—My body has not been laying down new bone for the past nine years. I have tried everything the traditional medical community has to offer, including rodding the long bones in my legs. I am now working with a well-known nutritionist who has directed me to take multiple supplements and drink raw milk. He feels the raw milk may be even more important than all of the supplements combined. People should be able to buy the food products they choose. Milk is a natural product and should not be illegal in any form. —Debbie Swierczek, Palatine, IL 60067
January 8, 2007—As long as no one is harmed, I should have the right to drink my milk raw. I joined Family Farms Coop in October of 2002, and signed up for a cow share as soon as I could. My wife and I have been drinking this milk for four years. Not only does it taste better than store bought, but it keeps longer in the refrigerator.
My hobby is extreme health. I am convinced that freed Xanthine Oxidase of homogenized milk is a major cause of arteriosclerosis and high blood pressure. I am 55 years old, have not been medically treated since 1995, and my blood pressure is 120/60. My doctor and I are good friends, though all she does is check-ups these days. I could say a lot more, but do I need to?
I’ve read up about the Grass Farming movement, and the political, ecological and economic aspects of big business food processing. I am convinced that small-scale organic farming is the right path to health for Michigan and the planet. I am deeply concerned about any effort to remove our God given right to healthy food from properly cared for animals.
Good health takes work these days. I worked, and I found raw milk. Please uphold my right to it. —Steven H. Veeneman, Genoa, Illinois
January 8, 2007—As a person with a Master’s in Molecular Biology, and having completed all the coursework for a PhD in the same, I have always been skeptical about the safety and efficacy of raw milk products. For a long time, I was unwilling to see them as a viable option for my family, despite a long history of gastrointestinal illness in my husband and children.
However, that changed when I learned about the Family Farms Coop. I did extensive research in their methods of animal husbandry and am satisfied that the methods they use are a sufficient safeguard against illness caused by pathogenic organisms.
In addition, after drinking raw milk products and eating them in our home, we are very happy with the health effects produced by the same. My husband can drink milk for the first time in many years, and is free of the crippling pain from food sensitivities that he has experienced consistently for the last year. My children, who are lactose intolerant, are able to digest kefir and yogurt made from the raw milk and I am very happy that they are able to get the nutrients they need from such a wholesome and nutritious product, rather from supplementation.
We are also very impressed by the quality of meat offered by the family farms co-op and Mr. Hebron. It is very nutritious and reasonably priced. In fact, we bought a quarter cow, and are enjoying it very much!
I am very sad to learn that the Family Farms involved in the co-op are being persecuted unnecessarily, and unreasonably, by the governments of their respective states. I am very concerned, also, that my right to feed my family high quality food is being interfered with. I implore the agencies involved to look again, and to respect the rights of my family to utilize the products of the cow which we partly own and care for. This is a very high quality organization, and is not a health risk for myself or for any consumer of their products.
Thank you for your attention to this matter. —Tricia Elbl, MS, Cell and Molecular Biology, University of Pennsylvania
January 7, 2007—To whom it may concern; I am writing on behalf of the Family Farms Co-op. Our family has been a member of FCC for 2 1/2 years. We have enjoyed and appreciated the quality of food from the farm, on many levels. Based on our research and choice for healthy living, the fresh, local raw dairy has been wonderful. The taste if far superior and the health benefits are obvious. For example, our 5-year-old son has severe eczema. It was recommended that he try raw milk, and within a week his condition cleared up, while all other treatments failed.
We also are firm believers in organic foods. We totally appreciate the power to choose milk from animals that have been raised on natural greens and have not been injected with antibiotics and growth hormones. In addition we are supporters of local farms both animal and produce.
The situation at FCC feels like a blessing to us. Our family appreciates your support in whatever way possible, to help the FCC farmers and the co-op members, continue to nourish our families in the way of our choosing to benefit our health. Feel free to contact me at anytime with questions or further comments. —Thank you, Kelly McDermott, Whitmore Lake, MI
January 7, 2007—Genetically modified food. Growth hormones routinely fed to animals to make them bigger/faster. Antibiotics fed to animals not due to infection but to keep them from mass outbreaks that occur when animals are raised in dirty, overcrowded, stressful conditions. Mandated irradiated produce.
These are just a few of the mainstream practices in the politics of food that concern me. I take the time to learn the benefits as well as the risks and then choose the right foods to support my lifestyle.
It is not my intention, in this statement, to explain the benefits of raw, whole cow’s milk; nor explain the risks and health dangers of pasteurized milk — of which there are many. I feel fortunate to have access to the products offered by Richard Hebron and the small, local farms that comprise the Family Farm Cooperative and I just want to convey my strong desire to be allowed the right to choose my own foods. —Kathryn Spencer Hawks, RN, Gregory, Michigan 48137
January 7, 2007—I feel very strongly about how fortunate I am to be able to enjoy the many products that Richard and Annette Hebron and the other farmers of Family Farms’ Cooperative (FFC) provide to their customers. The variety of beef, poultry, pork, honey, maple syrup, and dairy products I have tried and continue to purchase are very high quality, and that’s an understatement.
I support FFC not only because their products are very high quality but because FFC uses pastured/grass-fed methods to raise their animals. They do not use antibiotics, hormones, and steroids. Moreover, they do not apply herbicides, pesticides, and chemical fertilizers on their farmland. They are excellent stewards of their animals and their land, which I strongly support. What they do is the right thing to do and it is not easy. Farming to begin with is hard work. Doing it the right way like FFC means it is even harder. However, because FFC is doing it the right way means it is healthier for everyone. It is healthier for the animals. It is healthier for customers. It is healthier for farmers like the Hebrons. And it is healthier for people who are not directly involved because of the positive impact on the environment. Which means it will be healthier for future generations of farmers and consumers as well.
I believe FFC is important because they provide an example of what is possible to other farmers and consumers who are looking for alternatives to how food is produced.
I am hopeful and confident that FFC will be able to continue to provide all of their excellent products to their current and future customers. I consider my involvement with FFC an important part of my life not only because my family and I are able to enjoy their products, but also because in our own very small way, we are able to help support families that choose to do a very difficult, yet very important job. The families of FFC make our lives richer. —Regards, Jim Galow, Ann Arbor, Mi 48103
January 7, 2007—I have been a member of Family Farms Cooperative for about four years. My daughter and I have been enjoying fresh raw milk, along with grass-fed meats, and fresh eggs during this time. Previously, I had experienced digestive discomfort after drinking milk. I have been able to drink the raw milk without any problem. This milk is as nature intended, containing enzymes for proper digestion. I truly believe that much of the rise of dairy intolerance is due to the overprocessed incomplete state of commercial dairy products. I have worked in the natural foods retail industry for about thirty years and have witnessed this increase of problems in many people.
While my daughter and I have always enjoyed good health, I have seen further improvement in both of us since our switch to these fresh whole foods and raw dairy products. We rarely even get colds, and when we do they are quite mild. Neither of us has had a flu in the past three years. (Before, we usually came down with some variety of flu each winter.)
I am also dedicated to the support of small local family farms and food producers. The use of less fossil fuels in the shipping of our food is obviously of great environmental value and good for local economies. And equally as obvious, the consumption of fresh high-quality foods is a health benefit, as opposed to those which have been devalued through over-processing and lengthy storage.
I believe strongly in the humane treatment of farm animals found in these family farms, and am horrified by some of the conditions these living creatures must endure on many factory farms.
I am outraged by what I consider to be an attack on my right to choose the healthiest foods for myself and my loved ones in a free democratic society. —Patricia McMillan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
January 7, 2007—My mother and father have been purchasing raw milk products and grass fed meats, poultry and eggs from Family Farms for the last 4 years. They state, “We choose to buy raw milk products because they are exceptionally pure and rich in nutrients, which positively contributes to the health of its consumers. In contrast, we have found that milk produced in “milk factories” unacceptable to supporting excellent health. As American citizens, we demand the right to choose the foods we desire to uphold our health and the right to purchase those foods from whom we feel best provides them.” —Lenore and Clarence DuPree
January 7, 2007—Our family is happily consuming Natural Milk (Raw Milk), Grass-Fed Meat and Eggs for more than seven years. We are pleased to state that beside the fantastic taste, we are also enjoying the health benefits of these nutritional and natural products.
We grew up not far away from a very large farming community. From our very childhood we were used to consuming plenty of fresh milk delivered to our homes by a neighboring farmer. That milk was paradise. The smell and the taste of that milk used to make us drool. Same farmer was our source for eggs and meat. From the very young to very old, everyone was consuming fresh raw milk. We never had any allergies or milk intolerance problems. No one ever heard of osteoporosis.
When we moved to metropolitan areas over thirty years ago, we lost our access to fresh and raw milk. As we were accustomed to drinking milk, we started consuming store sold milk. Somehow, that milk refused to cooperate with our digestive system. We had bloating, gas and a feeling of unease after drinking that milk. As time passed, even the taste and smell of the store bought milk became unacceptable to us. After a short time we gave up on milk.
We had our son in 1991. We wanted him to grow on natural milk, eggs and meat. Luckily, organic food stores were springing up in our Chicago area. We started purchasing Organic (pasteurized and homogenized) Milk and all of our food supply from these stores. Organic milk did taste better than regular store sold non-organic milk. Still, our son had digestion problems with that milk. We had to limit organic milk consumption. We came to realize that there was something wrong with the store sold milk. It was not the milk that we were accustomed to as growing youngsters. Further, whenever we got a chance to have access to our old source of fresh raw milk, we were able to again enjoy the milk without any problem.
After a lot of research and experiments we came to realize that core of the problem was the pasteurization and homogenization process that makes milk indigestible by our system. We decided to get access to Raw Milk again.
Many years ago we purchased shares in Family Farms Coop that allowed us to have shared-ownership to cows. Richard Hebron of Vandalia, Michigan is assigned to manage the coop and deliver us our share of Raw Milk and other related products. Our son and we are enjoying milk again. We have no milk related allergic or digestive problems any more. This milk, coming from healthy cows in its natural state, is just wonderful. Our growing son and we need this Raw Milk.
We believe it is our legal right to drink raw milk and related products produced by the cows we own shares in. We strongly urge the MDA, IDA and FDA not to interfere in our right to consume raw milk produced by our own coop. —Sincerely, Parvez Khan and family, Park Ridge, Illinois
January 7, 2007—Our family has been blessed by the LORD to have access to raw dairy for the last three years; only our ignorance has kept us from enjoying it sooner. Many “experts” on both sides of the raw dairy debate have produced studies “proving” their side of the argument. All of this is just distracting from the real crux of the issue. The main point is whether the government has any business telling anyone what they can or cannot consume. Are we really free if we can’t even eat or drink what we wish? Whether one thinks it is safe or unsafe, that decision rests solely in the hands of the individual or their parents. Raw dairy has been enjoyed by countless numbers of people for thousands of years to the benefit of their health. Pasteurization is a rather recently utilized process. Let us all stand up for the basic human right of being able to choose what we consume before another of our God given rights are sacrificed on the altar of the FDA. —Bill N.
January 7, 2007—To the Cass County prosecutor and other government officials: Please take a minute to hear my plea and read the brief story of how raw dairy has been saving my life and my son’s.
A year and a half ago I was truly on the brink of disaster with Crohn’s disease causing rapid, undesired weight loss. There were fewer and fewer foods that I could tolerate without having terrible negative reactions. I hardly knew what to eat anymore. Through Dr. Mercola and his website (Mercola.com) I learned about raw dairy and grass fed beef. I was terrified to try either one as I was so allergic to both in their usual form (pasteurized dairy and grain fed beef). Miraculously, it was not only OK, but I began to regain desperately needed energy and weight. I am now so totally reliant upon Family Farms Co-op’s nearly magical dairy that it scares me to think it may be in jeopardy.
Also, my son was on the Autistic Spectrum, and within the 1st week of taking in large quantities of raw cream, his brain processing speeded up and sensory disturbances disappeared. He was allergic to pasteurized dairy and relied on rice and soymilk (which either have too much sugar or have negative effects on estrogen levels). He is now considered to be off the Autistic Spectrum. There are many others whose Autistic children have experienced dramatic speech improvements by introducing raw dairy to their diets.
I am eternally grateful that there is a caring man like Richard Hebron who will bring this life giving food to my area. It seems so crazy to me that the government of this so called free country, of which I’ve always loved and been so proud, is cracking down on the distribution of the most obviously natural product on the earth.
You must truly not know the facts about raw dairy and raw fats. It’s no surprise since so few of us do. It would benefit you and your families to look into it. See http://www.rawmilk.org/ or Mercola.com to learn more.
I hope you hear our many voices and our desperate plea to not remove our ability to access raw dairy (our medicine). Why else would we go out of our way and spend more money? My family has been 100x healthier since we’ve been drinking it. No more colds and flus in a year and a half! Truly!! Amazing!! Please listen to our voices and realize that if you remove this food from our lives, you will be doing such trauma to people’s health, the extent to which you have little idea. Uphold American’s rights to pure God given, unaltered whole food and become a HERO!! This is your chance to change our country for the better. We would all be healthier and more productive if we all switched to raw dairy. Learn about the true history about how pasteurization came about, and you’ll understand that it isn’t necessary when it comes from a clean small farm where cows are pasture raised. Please let us make our own decisions about what foods we want to eat. The proof of raw dairy’s benefits can be seen in all the people who seek it out.
Thank you so much for your time. —Sincerely, Stephanie Fargo
January 7, 2007—I love raw milk, I love free-range chemical free meat, and I love organic local produce. I was so very happy to find farmers that care about the same things that I care about and are willing to put their hard work and their passion into helping people get high quality health healthy foods. It was very disturbing to me to hear of the seizure by the FDA. I have been drinking this raw milk for a while now and have not suffered any harmful effects whatsoever. In fact, I have noticed a marked improvement in my digestion after I switched to raw dairy. If the FDA wants to shut down this operation, they should actually take a look at all the people who benefit from it, see what they have to say, see if their health has been affected negatively or positively, and then make a decision. I think what they would find is a group of educated consumers who have searched for healthy options and found it. Please consider our voices in your decision. Thank you—Vlaiko Manojlovski
January 7, 2007—I have a son who at three was diagnosed with “cold induced asthma”. Every few weeks he would get a cold and congestion with heavy mucus. We were told by our doctor (a D.O.) to take him off regular store bought milk (which he loved). Within two days he started sleeping through the night (finally) and the coughing was gone. Several years later when he was about seven we were still dealing with occasional asthma attacks and some allergies. He had taken swimming lessons and a month and a half later he still had a cough (allergy to chlorine). We were going on vacation (a Canadian fly-in trip) staying in a cabin with no electricity, so we couldn’t use his nebulizer. We were concerned that if an allergy or cold set in (and he already was coughing every night) that we could be in trouble. While we were picking up our yearly supply of organic meat from a farmer in MN we were offered “raw milk” from their home supply. We loved the taste and the idea that it was “alive”. They gave us a gallon to take home. Within two days my son’s cough was gone and never returned. Within a short time we located Family Farms Coop as a source of raw milk. We have been purchasing from them for several years. We have seen less colds and my son is now able to drink all the milk he wants with much less colds or asthma attacks than before. In fact most of time his asthma medicine expires rather than gets used. Without this choice of being able to purchase what we believe to be a healthy alternative (with no additives or hormones) we would be at a loss. —Michelle & John Baumgartner, Palatine, IL
January 7, 2007—We want freedom to choose healthy food! —AgnesG
January 7, 2007—It is our right as Americans to have access to healthy, life giving foods such as raw dairy, fruits and vegetables. It has been proven that foods eaten in the form that God created them originally, without cooking, microwaving or altering the food with chemicals or additives, contribute to the strengthening of our immune systems.
Our health system is full of patients with food related diseases such as cancer, cardiac and autoimmune diseases caused by the alteration of the foods we ingest.
Richard Hebron, and Family Farms Coop gives us the opportunity to have access to these safe, healthy, life giving foods in order to keep our families free from disease.
Our family has never been harmed in any way with the raw milk we have enjoyed, so we wish the privilege to continue to have this access. This will in turn relieve the healthcare systems of the burden of caring for those with unnecessary and unavoidable illnesses. —VickiD
January 7, 2007—I am tremendously grateful to Richard and Annette Hebron, and Family Farms Coop, which enables me to receive nourishing milk and other health-promoting, nutrient-dense foods. My health is such that I have to be super careful about what I eat (due to a digestive disorder) and can only tolerate a limited number of foods. One vital food I can tolerate is raw milk which I have been drinking for almost 2 years. I am enjoying a level of health that is greater than ever due to this precious food. When I was deprived of the milk for a few weeks, I definitely went downhill in my health. I know that raw milk is helping me to regain my health. I can’t imagine what would happen to me if I no longer could consume raw milk and hope that day never arrives! —Jean L., Southfield, MI
January 7, 2007—We have enjoyed the dairy and meat products from Family Farms Cooperative for several years. Several members of my family are having increased sensitivities to many chemicals in our “normal” American environment, and we have appreciated being able to purchase food without all of the chemistry, hormones and meds in them. The food we have purchased from Family Farms Cooperative has always been of the highest quality, and we have never had any problems with any of the food, nor have we had any health problems with any of the food.
I fear that the MDA action is, or borders on unconstitutional, but as there is little accountability to the voters, it will probably not be stopped that way. As all good politicians, the only thing the MDA will fear is looking bad. Bad publicity on the MDA’s actions, and information gained from FOI requests will probably be the most effective measures at stopping this. Follow the paper/email trail of the decision to attack the Hebrons, and publish that information to the appropriate Michigan legislators. Who gathered the information, what was their evidence, who made the decision to pursue it, and what was the evidence presented for the search warrants? Follow hard after any evidence that there is any communication with the commercial dairies. What proven harm have the Hebron’s products done to any consumers?
The evidence is that the raw milk is safe when produced in a healthy environment. The only ones that benefit from factory milk are the factories – not the consumers or farmers. —Joel Eland
January 7, 2007—Before my family started drinking fresh unprocessed milk four years ago, I read everything I could get my hands on regarding the safety of milk. I went to the farm, examined the cleanliness of the milking stations and inquired as to what testing was done on the milk. I drank it cautiously at first wondering if all the scary things that were predicted might happen to me (salmonella poisoning, etc.). How surprised I was that this milk tasted incredible and that I was able to drink as much of it as I wanted without the usual stomach pains and bloating I get when I drink pasteurized milk.
I have long since gotten over any fears I had regarding the potential safety of fresh milk. However, I do not take the health of myself and my family lightly at all. I carefully questioned Richard Hebron as to the milk safety practices of his farm including what the cows ate and how they were handled. I asked him how often his milk was tested for various bacteria.
You see, I view these health matters as my responsibility to educate myself on. I view it as a fundamental right to be able to choose what I eat and how I take care of my body and of my family. I ask that the government not take it upon itself to step in between the relationship I have with Richard Hebron or any other farmer. I am aware of the potential risks of drinking unpasteurized milk and wholeheartedly except those risks. I view the benefits of this extremely rich, nutrient dense food as far outweighing the potential risks of exposure to a particular bacteria.
Please leave Richard Hebron and other farmers at peace and allow them to do what they do best – taking care of animals in a way that makes them some of the happiest animals on the planet. Those happy animals are providing me with the healthiest freshest products I could possibly want. —Sincerely, Sherri Borer, DC
January 7, 2007—The fresh, raw dairy products available to us through Family Farms’ Cooperative are so far superior to any processed, pasteurized store-bought ones, there is simply no comparison- either in nutritional value or taste. As a 21st century city dweller, I also greatly appreciate knowing where my food comes from, having a connection to the farm, to the land and animals which produce our food. Thank You to Family Farms Cooperative and all the small farms who serve local markets for making this possible! —NanN
January 6, 2007—As a mom of a large family, it is my duty and expectation to try and find the most healthy and nutritious food for my family. I will search far and wide for non-irradiated, non-genetically modified, organic foods, and raw dairy products. My husband and I put our money where our health is rather than in all the material things others find so important.
Which brings me to the raw dairy product issue. If I have the right to find the most nutritious food for my family, why can’t I include our raw dairy products? And why can one part of the country sell raw dairy products off the shelves in a grocery store, and here we are under scrutiny? The real question is, by purchasing and using raw dairy products, are we draining our government of funds such as say, a cigarette smoker, a drug user, or an alcoholic? Are we choosing a risky lifestyle such as a racecar driver, scuba diver or a skydiver? No, and yet these lifestyles will cost our government in medical and other issues in the long run. Raw dairy products will not do this, and in fact may decrease these costs by keeping us healthier longer. If the prior people mentioned are not inhibited to the style of life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, why should a less risky raw dairy products purchaser be so inhibited? —Kelly L. Lentine, Mount Prospect, IL 60056
January 6, 2007—As the mother of two small children, I want my children to understand that nature can provide for us if we let her.
Food straight from the farm is a rare thing and I feel VERY fortunate to have Family Farms Coop as a dedicated provider of good pure food. Knowing how many chemicals we endear everyday, everything that we can do to limit what our children are exposed to helps ensure their legacy as healthy people.
I personally have done research into the raw milk movement and for the life of me, I cannot understand why milk has be treated with heat destroying all that nature has to offer. If the milking process and animals are treated with care all of us should be able to drink raw milk.
Raw milk is the essence of so many nutritious foods I can give my children. Please consider our children as the benefactors to have food that has not been chemically altered. — Sincerely, Linda Elms, Schaumburg IL
January 6, 2007—To Whom It May Concern: I am a member of the Family Farms Cooperative and am a cowshare holder. I have been a member of the FFC for nearly three years. I learned of them through the Weston A. Price organization (www.westonaprice.org) after reading the book Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. I am and always have been a supporter of humanely raised animals for human consumption. I support animals being raised in their most natural environment (outdoors, freely moving with adequate space) and most importantly eating the diets that they were intended to (grass for grazing animals, juicy bugs and larvae along with grains for hens). The typical grocery store meat selections are nutritionally substandard. Not only have the animals been fed incorrectly for their digestive capabilities, but they are more often than not raised in barns, some in complete darkness, never allowed to move freely or to breathe fresh air or feel the sun shining on their bodies. Additionally, most are fed antibiotics to combat disease due to the conditions they must live in. Personally, I find this nauseating and I will absolutely NOT support this type of farming by purchasing these products. It is unethical to treat animals in this manner. The families that supply meat, milk and egg products to the Family Farms Cooperative are raising their animals in a natural “old-fashioned”, if you will, way. The animals are cared for so they are healthy and require no drugs. The milk, meat and eggs are far more nutritious and delicious as a result. As an American, and as a human being, it is my right to seek out and purchase healthy food for myself and my family and that is what I am doing. We all have a right to eat what we want and what is “appetizing” to us. I think it would better serve our country if agencies like the FDA went after individuals who purchase and companies who manufacture “junk” foods, which have no nutritional value, and removed these food products from the food chain.
We, as a nation, have already seen the results of eating processed foods. The current nutritional advice is to “eat whole foods” like whole grains and cut back on processed foods that have been stripped of all their nutritional value. Even companies like Sara Lee Bakery have jumped on the bandwagon to produce whole-wheat versions of its bread. The idea of drinking pasteurized, homogenized milk is really just the same. It is a processed food. It is nothing like the original food product and is stripped of many of its nutritional benefits. My family has been able to drink raw milk for the last three years and it has been one of the foods that we really enjoy. When we have to buy grocery store milk for some reason, it seems so thick and white and coats our tongues in a peculiar way. The whole raw milk we drink is a creamy color (proof of a healthy grass-fed animal) and does not coat your tongue. During cold season, if one of my children has a cold, they can usually still drink the raw milk without creating any more mucus. Not so with processed milk! Personally, I like to know where my food is being produced and who the farmer is that operates the dairy farm. I do with FFC. I do not know who is operating the dairy farms when I purchase milk from the grocery store. Again, like all consumers, it is personally important for me to be able to choose who earns my business. —Sincerely, Jill Hevrdejs, Lake Villa, IL 60046
January 6, 2007— My family has participated in the Family Farms Coop Cow-Share Program for the last year and a half. I sincerely believe that the milk I purchase through Richard Hebron provides my family, particularly my two-year-old son, the single most important nutritional product available anywhere. From the beginning it has been my hope to continue to provide this milk to my family for as long as possible. My son loves it and he is a strong and healthy boy.
Living in a big city, it is almost impossible to conveniently obtain the milk that Richard delivers. Even with Richard’s deliveries it is not convenient. Every week I am either ordering or picking up milk. Milk pick up is every other Monday between 4 and 6 p.m. at one location several miles from my home. If I don’t make it, I don’t get milk for the next two weeks. I rarely miss a pick up because it is high priority for me and I am committed to providing my family with the best milk in the world.
I strongly support Richard Hebron and everyone involved in the Family Farms Cooperative. I believe it is my right and it is imperative that I continue to provide my family with real, nutritional, unprocessed, natural food. —Sincerely, Paul Nikopoulos, Chicago, Illinois
January 6, 2007—My oldest daughter was the only one of my four daughters who could actually handle store bought milk, although she had repeated ear infections as a baby. The other three always vomited store bought milk since infancy, yogurt was no exception. I was constantly worried that they were not getting enough calcium, and I was eventually told to give them raw milk. I was very skeptical, how could this be, milk is milk, right? However, my second oldest daughter milked a cow on a field trip, drank it and LOVED it. Not only did she NOT get sick, she raved and raved over how delicious it was! She was 7 years old at the time and it has taken me 5 years to find Family Farms Coop! From the first time I brought raw milk home, in the spring/summer of 2006—, my family drank it up. Our monthly 6-gallon purchase is usually gone in 8 days! This past fall no one in our family got a cold, pneumonia, or flu which has been an annual event in our house. My allergies, and that of my second daughter, were also lessoned this past fall. We are all healthier, happier, stronger individuals. Even my husband, who has not tolerated milk his whole life loves this milk and can easily digest it. My only disappointment is that I can no longer get fresh raw milk every two weeks because of this “situation”. We look forward to our monthly delivery with great anticipation. I urge government officials to not take our right to choose away. We have freedoms in this country, and the right to choose wholesome foods for personal consumption is one of the many things that make our country great. Please don’t let the dairy lobby destroy this wonderful option—Karen
January 6, 2007—My name is Denise Stettner and I am from Hampshire, Illinois. I am a stay at home mom raising two children, and trying to give my family the best care possible and teach them about their place in this world. I have been a member of Family Farms Coop for close to four years and always have received the highest quality foods. I know my family has benefited greatly from them. Prior to finding a source of raw milk, my children had no dairy in their diet for 2 years. Not only could their bodies not tolerate store bought dairy products, after my own extensive research of nutrition, I no longer wanted any member of my family to consume store bought dairy products. Naturally, I was very happy to find Family Farms Coop and be able to give my family the high quality milk I had been searching for.
However the subject of my children’s health is not even the main issue here. The real issue is my right to purchase and handle food the way I see fit. The issue cannot be one of lost profit for the conventional milk industry, because the people who believe in the consumption of raw milk are not potential consumers of conventional milk anyway.
So, if the concern is for safety of consumers, we are the ones who have to be trusted to handle all of our raw foods safely. Just as when we purchase raw meat or vegetables. No one is going to come in my home and regulate what temperature I cook my meat to, or how I scrub my vegetables, or see what temperature I keep my refrigerator set at, or how old my leftovers are. It is up to me how I handle my food whether it is raw or cooked. Now, I understand that there has to be some rules with the distribution of foods, and that’s fine. I will follow any rules I have to, or sign any form I have to, but do not take away my rights acquire food from farmers I respect and trust. If the issue is concern for my safety, don’t worry; I’ve got it covered.
If the issue is my rights, please do not take this communistic approach and try to control my purchase of food. This issue will never go away because people will continue to seek out raw milk. This issue will eventually get the attention it deserves and the people who don’t even drink raw milk will see this issue as an absurd infringement on basic rights. If the reasons for these investigations are purely profit driven, the state and federal agriculture departments true motives will be easily exposed. Let me once again express that if I lose my source of raw milk, I will not purchase store bought milk. I lived without it before and I would live without it again. Please do not take away my family’s rights to acquire foods from the sources we believe in. We believe in knowing the people we get our food from. That alone means the world to us. —Sincerely, Denise Stettner
January 5, 2007—My physician recommended raw milk to me that’s how I found out about Family Farms. After much research I quickly started ordering milk from Family Farms. My health has improved and I was able to get off medication as a result of the outstanding work Family Farms does and I thank them from the bottom on my heart everyday.
What is happening to this world when a farmer tries to do the ethical thing and gets condemned by the government? A government that will only allow us to only drink pasteurized milk from cow who has never been on a pasture being tortured in filthy stall for a short life without sunshine, feeding them grain which they would not chose to eat but grass while loading them up with antibiotics and hormones which are passed down to the consumer. Does the, FDA thinks that the good microorganisms, lactic acid and enzymes that pasteurizing and homogenizing kills is going to kill the American people.
This is America and I am outraged and sickened by the behavior of the MDA, FDA but not shocked. An FDA that approves Splenda a complete poison that was created as a pesticide now is in soda for children to consume. —Sharon Rose, Chicago, Illinois. P.S. I’d also like to add that my cat who is 13 years old, has never had interest in milk, wants raw milk.
January 4, 2007—It is very important to my family’s health that we continue to be able to consume healthy raw dairy products as provided by our farmer, Richard Hebron. There is no danger or harm coming from these products, just healthy life-giving nutritious food, unprocessed, helping to save the earth from unnecessary chemicals. The pastured cows who provide our milk and cheese are humanely treated and as a result we are treated daily to their wonderful milk.
This local small farm set-up is exactly what provides the vitamin and mineral rich food source to us city folks. Any action taken against Richard Hebron’s small family farm is taking away our freedom to choose what is best for our family’s health. —M. Teresa Griffin, Chicago, IL
January 4, 2007—Having largely been failed by the American Medial Establishment, it is the prerogative of every conscientious citizen to educate themselves and take responsibility for their health and the health of their family. If the current Institutions designated for the safeguarding and promotion of our health and well being are fulfilling their purpose, why does incidence of diet related disease continue to skyrocket in our nation? 1. Most people are either too lazy to think and act on their own behalf, or they are too trusting of self-proclaimed Government or Medical “Authorities.” 2. Processed Food, Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals are big business in the Western World. The Bible says that the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil, and this is true not only on the individual level, but on the corporate level as well. Those who take responsibility for their own health are not the demographic targeted by these Healthcare and Pharmaceutical Corporations. Neither can natural, raw, and unadulterated foods be mass-produced and sold on the grand scale necessary to satisfy the greed of the Corporate Food Giants. Very simply, healthy people do not support the Processed Food Industry, Healthcare, or Pharmaceutical Industries in the way that someone does who consumes a steady diet of McDonald’s, Twinkies, Doritos, and Coca-Cola, and then needs to visit the doctor every three months for prescriptions to treat his Diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol etc.
The American government has taken upon itself the duty of apprising its citizens of the various risks they may encounter – however, the Government and its Agencies are often guilty of discharging this duty with an extreme bias – presenting the possible dangers of consuming raw food and dairy as very grave, while downplaying the very real dangers of the myriad of Chemical Food Additives, processed foods and Pharmaceuticals it sanctions with its FDA stamp of approval. Hence, most Americans are unnecessarily fearful of the very things that have the most potential to bring them health, while at the same time; they trustingly embrace the very things that are keeping them in ill health.
There are no guarantees in this life and there is nothing absent of all possible risk. But a public, well informed and honestly appraised of the real facts concerning the proven negative health consequences of the Standard American Diet vs. the proven, life-giving and health-restoring benefits of raw dairy will undoubtedly choose the latter. In the end, we must entrust ourselves to God’s keeping, and diligently use the wisdom and means He has provided for sustaining good health – pure, unadulterated food, including raw dairy, if we are to achieve and maintain good health for life. There are no shortcuts to good health; it does not come out of a pill bottle – it is a lifestyle. For those who are dedicated to the pursuit of this lifestyle, we ask that the Government and its innumerable Agencies grant us the freedom to choose life for ourselves, and not interfere with or hinder our access to these health-giving foods. —Jason42
January 4, 2007— I am writing in support of Richard Hebron, Family Farms Cooperative and every other small farmer who has dedicated his/her life and livelihood to producing pure raw milk and other animal products as well as produce and other plant foods, where the goal is to raise farm products the way nature intended them to be raised. We as their customers are requesting the right to be able to buy food that meets our requirements of whole, unprocessed and natural. I believe that this is the best way to live. I have long been interested in health and nutrition and my reading has convinced me that many of our country’s health problems are due to the distortion of our food from its original state as a result of the unnatural raising and the processing that denatures the product. There is adequate indication to convince me that the high degree of food allergies, and especially dairy allergies, as well as many other health problems such as obesity, and hardened and clogged arteries, are directly related to the altering of the fats and proteins of processed products through such processes as pasteurization and homogenization. These processes change the state of the food so that the fats and nutrients are not as readily utilized by the body, causing a wide variety of problems.
I, and others like me who are desire to buy unaltered products, are convinced of their superiority in every way, including the benefit to the earth. When animals are raised in the way that best meets their health needs as nature intended and food raised in a natural rotation, there is much less danger of disease and much less need for interference through the use of polluting chemicals and fertilizers. My desire is to feed my family with food as close as possible to its natural state. As a concerned citizen I request the right to be able to buy the food that I believe is superior, and I am also respectfully requesting that farmers are given the right and protection to produce food that their customers are looking for and be freed from any further government harassment. I am confident that any standards of cleanliness is more than adequately met by Richard Hebron and those in the Family Farms Cooperative. I would also hope that they would receive government support and protection in a nation where the bulk of the farms are large corporations that make it hard for the small farms to remain in business. —Very sincerely, Ann Berger, Howell, MI 48843
January 4, 2007—Most of my family is unable to digest pasteurized dairy products. Over the last three years, I and three of my children can now enjoy the health benefits and taste of fresh farm milk with no side effects. I want to be able to serve my family quality food products and nothing feels better than to serve them fresh milk, cream, and delicious eggs straight from the farm. I have begun to have dental problems due to my lack of dairy since having children; I now can replenish my bones and body with the calcium and rich milk it needs. We are very grateful for this farm and can’t imagine not having it available to us. —Mrs. Kim Peterson, Des Plaines IL
January 4, 2007—Raw milk and other raw dairy products have tremendously helped my family to get our health back. My kids used to get sick frequently with ear and throat infections, coughs and colds. I had serious sinus infections and asthma for the past 13 years. Now, thanks to God and to the raw diet He directed me to, my sinus problems lessened, I don’t need to use my asthma inhaler anymore and I feel so much better overall! Since we have started consuming only raw milk and it’s products over two years ago, we have no more need to go to doctors, because we never get sick as we used to and if we ever do, the sickness and it’s symptoms are so mild that with the right nutrition that we are now aware of, it goes away by itself within a day or two. We don’t need unnecessary drugs or antibiotics anymore, that are addicting to our bodies and damage our immune systems.
Raw milk is the best source of natural, preventive medicine that is created by God and given to us to enjoy our and our families’ good health and we will NOT allow anybody to take it away from us and our children!
We stand strong to the raw truth that brings us health and well being. We are a continuously growing population of people who believe that all farms that provide us with wonderful, health giving raw milk and it’s products, just like “Family Farms”, should be and will always be supported. —Sincerely, Agnes G.
January 3, 2007— Through raw dairy I’ve experienced dramatic increase in my health. In the summer of 2005 I was diagnosed with severe hypothyroidism, I used raw dairy as a way to regain my health. Almost a year later I am almost off of all my prescription medications and haven’t felt this good in years. As a matter of fact I completed the 2006 Ford Ironman Triathlon in October using raw food for training food with very good results. —Lou Johnson Prospect Hts, IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 3, 2007—My family & I prefer using raw dairy because pasteurization destroys the many health benefits that we enjoy from raw food. We have not had any adverse reactions & are grateful for the opportunity to choose raw dairy products for the wellness of our family. —Mary Upchurch, Naperville, IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 3, 2007—I have a daughter who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy about a year ago and all I can remember is many doctors & specialist telling me that Alekza’s condition was never going to change (improve). Thank God I’ve always been a fighter and I never give up when I am struck w/a challenge. To make a long story short, Alekza has improved dramatically since she’s been consuming Raw Dairy products and organic foods. No drug or therapy can have such a positive change in such little time. —Monica LedezmaVilg, Lakewood, IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 3, 2007—I have been using raw milk for most of my life of 59 years. My family also drinks raw milk. We have never experienced any adverse effects from its consumption. People should be free to decide what they want to put into their bodies. The government and the FDA just wants to control and profit from the Dairy industry. Raw dairy is good for you. — Peter G. Leith, Bloomingdale, Illinois [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 3, 2007— Raw dairy is important in my life, and my family’s. I was bed ridden for a little over a year. When I started raw dairy I was actually able to get out of bed. I am now 8 months into getting healthier. I feel great & I am off all my Prescription medicine. My diabetes, high blood pressure, liver damage, kidney damage meningitis has all ceased & I don’t need medication for anything. Raw dairy has given me my life back, without it I’m sure I’d be gone by now. — Renee Bentall McHenry, IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 3, 2007— I have personally used raw dairy products for the past year. I have seen improvements in my health after changing from pasteurized to raw dairy products. The public needs to be aware of the benefits of raw dairy. It has improved my health greatly. —Steven Rye, Glendale Heights IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 3, 2007—I am from Pakistan and cannot drink milk from the store. Raw milk is the only milk I can drink, without raw milk my life would be empty. I also work as a police officer in a busy town. When I drink raw milk I feel more alert, and [???]. I also don’t get sick anymore. Raw milk has helped me in my every day life. I feel I need raw milk! Adeel M. Afridi, Naperville, IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 3, 2007—I have noticed that when eating raw organic dairy my skin has cleared up, and my overall skin health has been good. Also when eating raw dairy I never had any problems with my digestive system. My experience from eating raw dairy has been nothing but good to my health. —Carl Bentall, McHenry, IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 3, 2007— Since I’ve been consuming raw dairy, my health has improved dramatically. I have osteoporosis and am allergic to the medication the doctor prescribed. I feel so much better physically since I’ve been enjoying raw dairy. I no longer have muscle and joint pain. I have read where raw dairy has reversed osteoporosis; that’s what I’m aiming for. —Susan Musyynsky, Winfield, IL [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
January 3, 2007—I have been drinking raw milk and consuming pastured meat, eggs and dairy products from Richard Hebron’s coop for four years. These foods have literally saved my life. I am a professional clarinetist with a national career–4 years ago I was deathly ill with a chronic digestive disorder that threatened to end my career and my life. I had chronic pain for 25 years. I was able to rebuild my health to a vibrant state through the traditional foods from Family Farms Coop and have been pain-free for 3 and-a-half years.
As a US citizen, I have the right to choose the foods that support my health from whom I feel can provide them. I choose to purchase my food from small family farms dedicated to producing the highest quality foods. With these foods–I am choosing “LIFE”–because I am eating foods that are necessary to supporting my health—the most important asset that I have. Without health, a person cannot fulfill their highest purpose.
The future of our country depends on the health of our planet and its people. We must make correct choices of the foods which we choose so that our future is bright. Small family farms such as Family Farms Co-op provide people with assurance of this bright future. —Sincerely, Kathryne Pirtle
January 3, 2007—Has anyone been harmed by raw milk and organic meat?
I’m wondering if the Michigan agriculture people can produce even one person who has been harmed by raw milk or the organic products offered by the Family Farms Cooperative. I challenge them to find someone.
I used to work in a supermarket, and I was surprised by the unhealthy choices most people made. The most frequently bought items in my store were Coca-Cola, white bread, and chips of all sorts. Whenever an order consisting mostly of fresh fruits and vegetables came down the conveyor belt, I would glance up and see who was buying them. More often than not, the people were speaking a foreign language or were clearly from another country.
But in this country, we have the right to purchase cancer-causing, heart-attack-causing, diabetes-causing, obesity-causing foods, because we enjoy freedom of choice. There are vending machines laden with these unhealthy products in most American schools, and kids’ lunch boxes are full of them.
Governmental officials protect our rights to choose unhealthy foods because we are a free nation. Why won’t they allow us to choose healthy, life-giving foods for ourselves and our families? I would ask them why they are harassing the farmers who provide these foods. Where is their evidence of harm? I doubt they could even one person who has been hurt by eating Richard’s products, but many of us can come forward, and bring our children, with evidence that we were harmed by the products that the government gives us the right to consume. —Juliasmom
January 3, 2007—My neighbor first re-introduced me to raw milk, cheese and butter. When I first tasted it, I revisited my childhood vacations in MN in my mind. The fresh, clean taste “made sense” to my body and I didn’t have any of the digestion problems I usually have from using store bought dairy products. I was amazed. So was my digestion! Did the cow do something different or did man? I want to continue using these products and try others. I feel they are a vital part of my attempt to ward off disease and maintain a healthy body. —Mary Anne
January 3, 2007—In early 2003 I began to have problems after every meal in the form of heart palpitations – butterflies in the stomach, or skipped beats (not racing). I finally tracked this down to gluten allergy which had been sub-clinical for my whole life, but which blossomed in middle age with progressive and accumulating intestinal damage (nutritionist diagnosed this as leaky gut syndrome). The palpitations went away when I identified and then eliminated gluten/wheat, but a big hunk of nutrition was also removed from my diet. So I tried raw milk and have never looked back. Real milk’s highly digestible enzymes will actually settle down an episode of palpitations if I make a mistake and get some wheat (or too much sugar, another poison). Furthermore, in the first year drinking raw milk my good cholesterol HDL went up from the low 40’s to the mid-50’s with no other change in diet (I had been off gluten for over a year before starting raw milk) and no added exercise, and total cholesterol did not change. I’m also healthier (knock on wood) with very few colds, and when I get one it’s gone in a day, and no flu even though I don’t take the flu shots. Finally, I’ve found that my gluten allergy is marginal – I can eat spelt (which has gluten) and Ezekiel bread and cereal (which has wheat but it’s sprouted). My conclusion is that sure, I’ve gotten older, and my digestion less robust with age, but probably the wheat itself has changed even more with the highly processed, hard-shelled variety so prevalent in the US becoming less and less digestible for more and more people, which is why we’re seeing a growing gluten allergy epidemic. —Steve Bemis
January 3, 2007—My family drinks raw milk for over 3 years now. We started to drink raw milk to maintain and improve our good health. It is important for my family and I to have the choice to drink raw milk. We prefer to eat foods in its raw state since this is the most beneficial for us. From all the health studies I have read, when foods are processed such as heating, pasteurizing and homogenization it leads to disease. We can purchase and eat other foods in its raw state such as eggs and meat. It should be a free choice to purchase raw milk as well. Raw milk has improved our health tremendously. My 2 kids have not missed one day of school this year and they missed a lot of school before drinking raw milk with a multitude of ear infections. I am a college educated individual with a strong background in health. I thoroughly studied the information on raw milk and concluded it is very beneficial to drink. At one time doctors used raw milk to treat illness. There is so much misleading information with bacteria contamination of milk and the need to pasteurize. This just allowed farmers to be sloppy and have pus-filled milk in cows and cows allowed to remain in unhealthy conditions. There is more bacteria contamination occurring in pasteurized milk than in raw milk. I get my raw milk from a farm where cows are allowed to graze green pasture and eat what they were intended to eat. When cows are giving the right food and the healthy living conditions, bacteria contamination doesn’t occur. Stopping consumers from consuming raw milk is not a solution to anything.
January 2, 2007—My daughter, Julia, was born on 2/22/02, and the only milk she received during her first year came from me. She was healthy, calm, and obviously intelligent. She picked up a pencil at age six months, and by one year, she was drawing figures like a much older child.
When Julia was a year old, I added store-bought cow’s milk to her diet. Immediately she had a personality change. She was impulsive, obstinate, angry, and unsettled. I suspected the milk, but she needed the calories, since she has her father’s rapid metabolism. And maybe she was just entering the terrible twos.
However, she also became constipated–severely. I won’t go into the details, but several weeks would go by, and when her body finally worked, the process was painful and terrifying for her. Finally, I went to a specialist, who told me it was probably the milk she was drinking. “We see this all the time in kids. It’s a common milk allergy. Limit her intake to three cups of milk a day.”
However, any amount of pasteurized milk stopped her up. When I took her to have a colonic irrigation, the technician needed a full 15 gallons of water (an adult amount) to cleanse her little 28-pound body. That was the worst half-hour of her young life (as well as mine).
Then I read on Dr. Mercola’s website that it wasn’t the milk that was culprit in childhood allergies but pasteurized milk. All the enzymes and fragile proteins have been cooked and destroyed by heating. I saw this myself when my son did a science project in which he made plastic simply by boiling milk. The milk hardened into a rubbery substance that never broke down.
I found out that Richard Hebron delivered raw milk and other wholesome food to my area, and I placed an order. Well, Julia loves the raw milk. She’ll drink the cream right off the top. And it does not constipate her–quite the opposite. Since starting on the raw milk, she has gained eight pounds, going from the 5th percentile in weight to the 50th!! And her sweet, patient artistic personality has returned. Even though she is only four, she is teaching herself to read, and now she draws like an average eight-year-old.
When I told this story at church one Sunday, an elderly woman told me about her sickly brother and how his life was saved in the 1920s by raw milk. It was illegal even back then, but a local farmer sold the milk by taking payment at his house, then leaving the milk by the side of a deserted road, from which the boy’s parents would pick it up in the middle of the night. The boy went from chronic illness to health, and the woman said it was because of the raw milk. Cooked milk never helped him.
We are also fans of Richard’s beef and pork. The first time I ate his chuck roast; my mind was suddenly transported back to the 1960s, to the taste of the roasts my mother made. What a difference! My son says that all cattle were grass-fed during my childhood, that there was no such thing as inhumane feedlots, where cows were fed garbage, fecal matter, and diseased flesh from other animals. The beef in today’s stores has only a fraction of the flavor of Richard’s beef. And the fat doesn’t congeal the same way as the fat of unhealthy grain-fed meat. Apparently, the fat composition of grass-fed beef is different and healthier than the hardened white stuff that we see in stores.
January 2, 2007—My husband, who is disabled, and I have been Family Farms customers for some years now. We have always been impressed with the high quality of the products. My husband, who has many food intolerances, needs high quality organic food – especially raw dairy. He cannot tolerate any other kind.
Milk is a living substance. Pasteurization denatures the protein and destroys the helpful enzymes that make milk such a superior form of nutrition.
Ungulates and fowl are not meant to live in crowded enclosures where diseases spread rapidly, nor should they be eating an unnatural diet of grains laced with antibiotics as well as growth hormones. While strict regulation is necessary for such factory farms, the farms themselves do not produce food which enhances health. Smaller farms run on organic principles produce safe food of superior quality. Common sense dictates that factory farm regulations should not apply to this type of operation.
As educated consumers, we sought out Family Farms; they did not solicit our business. It angers us that state regulatory agencies, under the guise of “protecting” us, are reducing our choices as well as undermining market diversity, which is a hallmark of true laissez-faire capitalism.
We, as consumers, do not want to settle for second best. We want the best and we have found it in Family Farms. And we want to keep it! —Mary Golden-Rogan, David Rogan
January 1, 2007— As a park ranger, I thoroughly appreciate the many laws and regulations set forth by our government to protect and safeguard our society at large.
Like most folks I’ve encountered, both professionally and personally, I do not appreciate governmental legislation that is intrusive and unmerited into my life’s liberties. The issue of regulated raw healthy milk, I believe, is one such liberty. Please allow me to explain…
I was born an asthmatic child with many allergies. One of the allergies I endured was a reaction to store bought pasteurized milk. As I grew older, I became more and more unable to tolerate it. The typical problems many suffered I too endured, included stomach pains and gases, diarrhea, as well as would cause breathing/wheezing difficulties. Not surprisingly, I discontinued all milk from my diet.
Two years ago, I reluctantly tried this new healthy natural milk. In other words, non-pasteurized, raw milk… I was more than skeptical. Though I finally tried it. To my amazement, the milk was rich and delicious with no side affects of the previously mentioned pasteurized milk. Wow! I thought. I must be cured. So I then, again, tried the commercial pasteurized milk. Big Mistake! I was not cured. It was quite simple and clear…Pasteurized Milk; very disturbing allergic reactions – Natural Raw Milk; no allergic reactions. I am not a chemist or a biologist. I cannot explain how this occurs. I can only testify it does occur.
This may seem like a very small insignificant detail in life. But, you see… my six-year-old son, Silas, has the same allergic reactions to pasteurized milk and no such reactions to the healthy natural raw milk. And my Silas, is no small insignificant detail in life.
The Hebron Family/Family Farms Co-op is our family’s only known resource for this valuable commodity. It would be a shame and a unnecessary hardship to hinder the Hebron Family’s much needed and appreciated raw unpasteurized milk business. — Sincerely, The Plom Family, Milan, MI
January 1, 2007—TO: CASS COUNTY PROSECUTOR, RE: STATEMENT OF SUPPORT FOR RICHARD & ANNETTE HEBRON AND THE FAMILY FARMS’ COOPERATIVE, FROM: PATRICK AND BARBARA BOEHEIM.
Richard and Annette Hebron in conjunction with the Family Farms’ Cooperative are providing a much needed service to the community. They are good people offering Family Farm Cooperative members healthy food choices not found in most grocery stores. Through their efforts, our family has been provided quality food products that contribute to our overall health. We are provided with a peace of mind knowing we are consuming real, clean food.
For us, at heart of Richard’s detainment and Annette being served a search warrant on October 13, 2006 are two main issues: 1) the disruption of the their livelihood and, 2) the limitation of our constitutional right to choose what food we purchase for our family.
The Hebron’s have a small family farm that has been their dream for many years. Through the Family Farm Cooperative, high quality and fully nourishing diary and meat products are produced and made available that simply cannot be purchased in the usual, well-known grocery stores. The Hebron’s commitment to this service is truly an inspiration to us and we are very grateful to them. Their vitally important work is based on the moral value of working to make healthy, nourishing, tasty, and chemically free dairy and meats products available to the consumer. It is their livelihood. That is an undertaking we believe needs to be supported, promoted and applauded. We need to recognize their commitment and hard work. As entrepreneurs, we want to support their livelihood as small family farmers.
An important aspect of their work is that the Hebron’s and the Family Farm Cooperative provide us with “choice”. The right to choose is a deeply held American value. As Americans we have a right to choose and in this case, the right to choose the food we purchase and consume. The Constitution has given us that right and the Supreme Court has strongly advocated for that right. We believe stopping the Hebron’s and the Family Farm Cooperative is morally wrong. —Patrick and Barbara Boeheim
December 30, 2006—After many years of research I decided raw milk was the best decision for my family and feel it is far superior to the commercial milk sold in stores. I strongly feel this should be a decision made by each individual and is not the place of the government to interfere with this personal choice. I know it is in my family’s best interest to give them high quality grass fed meats and raw dairy products. I don’t know what we would do without this source. For a period of time we were denied our share of food, when the government got involved, a place I feel they had no business being. My family became ill, something that rarely happens. I strongly believe this had to do with being forced to purchase inferior foods from the grocery store. There are so many others more important things government officials could be doing with their time and our money. If dairy and meat is the area they want to focus on, fine, look closer at the feedlots, or would this be cutting too deep into their own pockets. —Cathie
December 30, 2006—To whom it may concern: Our family has been consuming raw milk on a daily basis since 1996. We have owned shares of a cow or shares in a herd with six different farmers over the course of those ten years, for several years driving 1½ hours each way in order to obtain this wonderful source of nutrition. We’ve raised three healthy young men (currently ages 18, 15, and 9) with not a single negative experience of any kind with the milk. We have been members of Family Farms co-operative since they began in Ann Arbor. I believe that the right of consumers to choose what goes into their bodies is a very basic right, and that farmers must be allowed to reach their markets in such a way as to keep family farms alive. I myself and many of my friends will go to many lengths to make this relationship with farmers work. Please work with us instead of against a perfectly legitimate form of commerce. And a superior form of nutrition! — [signed] Carolyn A Hejkal, Carolyn and Steve Hejkal, Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 30, 2006—I am a mother of two and an alternative health care provider. My family drinks raw milk for the many health benefits as well as the treatment of the cattle. I feel the raw milk products keep us all healthy. I have no problem recommending raw milk to my clients. I have not seen one negative effect from using raw milk. I have seen positive benefits in my family. The wonderful flavor encourages all to drink more and provides us with the nutrients we need. —Diane Thal Gluck, Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 30, 2006 —The Bible speaks of the Holy Land as “flowing with milk and honey.” So important is milk – real milk – fresh non-pasteurized milk. Every American should have the right to choose the food they eat. No government agency should be able to stop citizens from choosing fresh food. It is against the very fabric of our Society. More, the effort to stop independent business people, groups of citizens and co-ops from organizing in their own behalf is unconstitutional. On all grounds the State of Michigan should back-off and let us choose our own way of nourishing ourselves and our families. —Peter K. Gluck, Ann Arbor, Michigan [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—Several years ago I was diagnosed with post polio syndrome. I was always fatigued & achy and with info I was getting from my doctor this was to continue. All I did from that time to now was to educate myself on natural ways to make my life as healthy as possible. Along with organic fruits & veg. the biggest change has been to drink raw milk & milk products. From my understanding having raw milk – with its still live enzymes for digestion & assimilation. This has been delicious & health giving to me. I feel better – I’m more energetic and feel this is just the natural way milk is meant to be! Please, this statement of support is to support a person’s right to choose this raw milk & to support the farmers who care for the cows in the healthiest way possible. Hopefully, this will impress other farmers and make a change for all those who want healthy milk! —Thank you. Barbara Boeheim [signed] Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006— My family is delighted with the quality of raw milk, even though none of us has a health issue regarding milk. I use it in cooking and the results are superior in every way (e.g., my bread pudding always gets rave reviews!). I wouldn’t be without it! —Barbara Widick, Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—I love the fresh taste of creamy raw milk. It’s the best. Milk at a store – EW – no cream. My mom grew up drinking raw milk and wants to continue. I do to. Yum. The fats in milk are good and healthful for you. Back then, people always drank raw milk. Did you see people getting sick or dying because of it? You did in YOUR mind. But they didn’t. In fact, they were healthier than people today. People got sick because of raw milk. That’s what you say. But they got sick because of unclean milk. God put milk on the earth for a reason. He put it here for healthful purposes—not for people to be arrested if they sell it. We need the freedom to make that decision. God wants us to drink raw milk! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! GOD GAVE US raw milk ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! — [signed] Brady Shawn Andrews, AGE TEN, Bellville, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—This nation was built on the notion of personal freedom. Many people around the world still to this day strive to enter America and live a life of freedom and have a chance to be successful. It is a sad day when a farmer’s goods are seized here in our country! Americans have a right to choose what foods we eat. I support Richard Hebron and his activity to provide wholesome food for us all. —Brian R. Andrews & Teresa R. Andrews Belleville, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006— I am writing this testimonial in support of Family Farms Cooperative located in Vandalia, Michigan. I joined this co-op in the fall of 2006— because I believe in the values it represents: the preservation of a way of life centered around family farms and other small-scale agricultural endeavors. The benefits of this way of life are immeasurable for both humans and animals. Animals are raised in a humane way producing food products of very high quality in natural surroundings without antibiotics. I believe that we are all endowed with the right to choose the kind of food we wish to eat and to know how and where it is produced. Supporting a family farm cooperative creates a wonderful community endeavor as well. It is a model for social interaction that benefits everyone involved. I believe also that through these healthful, nutritious products my well-being and the well-being of my family is greatly enhanced. I am truly grateful to Richard Hebron and all other farmers like him who are striving to make this cooperative ideal a reality. —Celeste Craig, Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—I believe in the right to choice who I vote for, how my family worships, and the type of food I buy to nourish my family. I take great care in choosing the best quality, freshness and best tasting foods I can buy and prepare for my family. This is why I’ve chosen to be a member of the Family Farm Co-op; it provides the best quality food for my family. All products are fresh and the highest quality that can be found in Michigan. I wish commercial producer took the care and produced the quality foods available from the Family Farm Co-ops. Sadly I’ve found sour milk, old eggs, dyed meats only to mention a few of the poor quality found in the local Kroger’s, Whole Foods and the like. I am extremely greatly [i.e., grateful] for this choice – my choice – to be a member of this Co-op so I can provide the very best for my family. —Cheryl Depner, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48105 [edited & transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—I strongly believe in my right to choose raw dairy products. Since I’ve been using raw dairy, I have noticed a marked improvement in my health. I have more energy and feel more satisfied after eating which prevents past dinner trips to the fridge. I am very happy that I can legally choose raw dairy in the state of Michigan via the cow share program I participate in. I believe access to raw dairy should be available to everyone in Michigan in the grocery stores as it is in California. I would like the state to let me choose what is healthy for me. I am allowed to choose sugary, processed, trans fat products that have been shown to make us obese and cause premature death. I would rather choose raw, healthy products, the foods my ancestors. I would be sad to live in the state of Michigan if you took away my right to choose. —Christina Biberstein, Canton MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006— To whom it may concern, I recently began making cheese as a hobby with the resultant cheeses being consumed by me and my wife. All of my research into making cheese indicated that all of the world’s finest cheeses were for the most part made with raw cow, goat, or sheep’s milk. So after using store bought (pasturized/homognized) milk and obtaining mixed results in my finished cheeses, I did further research into obtaining a higher quality raw milk for cheese making. The end result of that research/search was contacting Richard Hebron of family farms cooperative and then, in fact, joining this coop. And purchasing a share of a heard of cows. This currently allows me to make cheese for myself using milk from my cows. The results of which I have been very happy with. My cheese is my passion therefore my cows are my passion. As a rule I also follow federal guidelines for aging cheeses at least 60 days before consumption, because most of my aged cheeses will take at least a year to age I more than meet this rule of thumb. Please endeavor to support our cooperative and our freedom to choose our food source. —Colin Maguire Farrell, Wayne, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—Let Richard Hebron & other honorable farmers share their real food with us – including Raw Milk from healthy cows. I believe we all should have the right to eat & drink the food we believe is healthy. We are intelligent people who care about the well-being of ourselves & our children, and after careful study, we believe real food from the farm is best. Can you prove to me that milk heated to high temperature is still fully nutritious? No. Can you prove to me that food contaminated with pesticides is safe? Of course not. At least let me make my own decisions. As a physician and a parent, I study food as medicine and a source of life. Food can also be a poison. Any food (spinach, meat) could cause illness, much of life has some risk, but at least if the food starts out fully real & wholesome, it will nourish us & help keep us well. —Debra Alspector, MD, Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—I have been consuming raw dairy products for two years. I have noticed a significant decrease in seasonal allergies, asthma, and inflammation since I have replaced commercially available pasteurized milk with raw milk and cream from pasture fed cows (raw dairy from Family Farms Coop). Family Farms Coop has consistently provided premium quality raw dairy products that have always tasted delicious. I have never had any negative health effects from consuming raw dairy from the coop, only positive health results. I believe that FFC is doing a great health service to their coop members by providing the opportunity to consume fresh raw dairy. The many positive health benefits associated with consuming probiotics and nutrient rich raw dairy from grass fed cows greatly out weighs any minute negative claims of raw dairy— [signed] Jamie Sutton, M.S.R.D., Flat Rock MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—I have been getting milk from Family Farms for over 3 years now. My husband, my 10 year old daughter and myself have been drinking the milk. Prior to drinking raw milk, my daughter had many cavities. Since drinking raw milk, her cavities have been greatly reduced & last checkup she had none. She is growing tall. We have many allergies, but can drink & digest the raw milk easily. I know that Family Farms’ milk tested as very clean. I like using unprocessed, healthy products & like the raw milk for that reason. Also, the taste of the milk is wonderful. —Jean and Andrew Balent Saline, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—We believe in being educated consumers so that we can make healthy choices for ourselves and our family. This means that we choose, whenever possible, fresh, pesticide-free, whole foods from local farmers or stores. This is why we are cow share holders for Family Farm Co-operative. We choose to buy fresh raw milk as it is filled with important vitamins, like A and D not destroyed by pasteurization, and does not contain hormones or pesticides. The cows are grass fed most of the year and in winter hay and silage. This is important for our health, and ethically, as the animals are well looked after. We want to support local farmers who have humane, pasture-based dairying, small scale traditional processing, and direct farm to consumer sales. —Jenny & Robert Kropf, Ann Arbor, Michigan [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006— I am a new member of Family Farms Co-op. I have been very relieved and happy to find this source of wholesome, quality foods, and am now extremely concerned that this resource is threatened. Living in the city environment, I am extremely restricted on the freshness of food I am able to obtain. Such a valuable service as FFC provides should be expanded to reach a very needy and unhealthy society, and not reduced. We highly value our right to obtain high quality food. Please do not take this away from us! —Kay Werthan, Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—I have been drinking raw milk and consuming raw milk products (cream, butter, yogurt & cheese) for 8 years. I am trained as a Naturopathic Family Physician and regularly recommend raw milk and raw milk products to my patients. Raw milk is a much better choice for most of my patients, when compared to conventional dairy products. Richard Hebron is providing a much needed service to our cow share program, and supplying us with raw milk products which we cannot obtain elsewhere. I know my family and many others will suffer in health if we are prohibited from obtaining our raw milk. The MDA has a responsibility to us as Family Practice Physicians, and as patients & citizens, to allow us access to this most nutritious food. The raw milk products which our cow share program provides us are essential to our health. Thank you for your careful consideration of our case. — Lisa Canar, ND, Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—I support Richard Hebron & the right to drink raw milk for many reasons. I want a real product, not reconstituted powder. I want the enzymes that help make this milk digestible. My 16 yr. old son drinks this milk & it’s one of the few healthy things he eats. I want to support small farmers who provide safe food and don’t pollute the environment like many factory farms. But I also have a immediate, striking, personal reason. In 2000, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. In Aug of 2006—, the tumor was found in my bones. It looked widespread – pelvis, femur, scapula, spine, skull, humerus. But when the surgeon biopsied the sites, she found very few live cells – although they are there. 4 biopsies later, there were still not enough live cells to get more specific information. What doctors have said is that my bones were keeping up with the destruction of the tumor cells. I don’t take calcium supplements. The main source of bone building material in my diet is the raw milk I’ve been drinking since 2003. A source of raw milk is essential for my health. Richard Hebron & Family Farms are honest & caring farmers. They are caring, honest farmers and have my total support. —Lisa Gayle, Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—I think raw milk is the best. We should be able to drink raw milk. My mom drank raw milk almost half her life. Raw milk is way more creamier than that organic milk. They said on the back of that organic milk that it was creamy and smooth. That wasn’t true at all. My cousin drank the store milk and got sick but when he drank raw milk he was just fine. We should have the right to drink raw milk. —Makenzie, Age 9.
I LOVE raw Milk. —Parker, Age 6 [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—For many years, whenever I drank pasteurized milk and milk products, I would have a negative physical reaction. This included diarrhea, sluggishness and excess mucous in my throat and nasal passages. Since I love milk, butter, cream and cheeses, this was a huge problem. Do I forego the foods I love in order to feel well, or do I eat the foods I love and feel lousy? For over ten years this was my dilemma. Until this past summer when I found out that I could have raw, actually “Real” milk, supplied by an Amish dairy farmer. I purchased a “cowshare” in the Family Farms Coop and began to drink raw milk. Not only were there none of the negative symptoms I experienced with commercial, industrial milk, this Real Milk actually gave me more energy. And despite the fact this was Whole Real Milk, I stared to lose some excess poundage! And I was drinking a gallon a week, plus real milk butter, cream and yogurt. Not once have I had any bad effects from drinking Real Milk! Were it not for Mr. & Mrs. Hebron’s efforts, I and many others would not have access to the Real Milk that he delivers to us every week. Real Milk is a wholesome, healthy real food, and it is a crime against humanity to forbid its distribution. —Michael J. Richard, Ypsilanti, MI 48198[transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—I write to express my support for the inalienable right of every American citizen to make their own choices as regards their health issues. This includes the right to choose what foods they will eat whether for economic or religious reasons. I am such a citizen, tax payer & voter with 20 years service in the armed forces of the United States of America. I will not be told what I must eat by bureaucrats at either the federal, state or local levels. My religious views on this matter are such that this is intolerable. I will work actively for the removal from office – public or private of all who try to promote these un-American policies. —Most sincerely, [signed] Michael V. Kramizeh, Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006— I support Mr. Richard’s cause because this is a free country where raw milk should be able to be sold without kind farmer’s goods being confiscated. My parents joined the co-op to get us the healthiest, best-tasting milk on earth. Pasteurized milk is just an excuse for selling “dirty” milk. Just because common, name-brand milk companies don’t want raw milk around does not mean that it is illegal for my family to buy clean raw milk from Mr. Richard’s co-op. As an American I demand that these disgusting actions of contempt from the agricultural committees toward Mr. Richard’s farm to STOP since the charges were not valid. Mr. Richard is a fine American citizen and deserves to be treated like one with respect. —Morgan Andrews, Age 13, Belleville, Michigan [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—I have been purchasing, under a cow share program, raw dairy and much else from Family Farms coop since May 2005. Since then, I have enjoyed and prospered, health wise, from the benefits of raw milk. I am concerned that my right, to drink milk from a cow that I technically own a part of, may be taken away. I support Family Farms Coop wholeheartedly, and with great satisfaction. Please allow us all our rights to choose our foods. —Neil Rish Ann Arbor, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—My name is Randy Melauson, age 47, and along with my wife, Angela, 42, and our children, have been drinking raw milk and consuming raw dairy products for about 2 years. We are all healthy and thriving, and have spent considerable time researching and educating ourselves on the scientific evidence supporting raw, whole food nutrition vs. cooked & processed foods. As a result, we are fully convinced of the many health benefits of the former, and we will continue to seek to provide the healthiest food & lifestyle choices for our family. That is why we support Richard Hebron, but we would support anyone willing to provide healthy food choices for people. In this way, Richard and others like him are providing significant value to people’s lives. We believe we should have the right to choose healthy, raw food alternatives, and encourage state and federal authorities to objectively research this issue. — Randy Melauson, Pinkney, MI [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—My Mennonite grandmother shared her love of the land, the rhythm of the seasons and the simple complexities of rural farm life with me as I grew up. By my late 20’s I had shunned some of her traditional ways in favor of convenience and the conventional wisdom of health magazines. By my late 30’s I had some serious health challenges, but had yet to connect these with what I was eating. I was a vegetarian on a low fat, high carb, soy laden diet. I was eating organic, but a lot of it came from cans, boxes and prepackaged foods. By my late 40’s my list of physical complaints had grown and I was seeking second and third medical opinions. I was introduced to the work of Dr. Weston A. Price and here, made the connection between my health and what I was eating. I saw my past rise up to meet me as I returned to the ways of my grandmother, her teachings and my own essential values. In 2004 I became a cow share member of Family Farms and met Richard Hebron. I was exercising my right to choose fresh from the farm dairy and meat. As I shifted my diet to whole, raw, unprocessed foods I saw changes in my health, vitality and energy. I value foods grown on small family farms dedicated to organically enriched soil and abundant sunshine. I value direct access to the farmer so that I know where my food is coming from. I value the Family Farms Cooperative of which I am a proud member. —Rene Garrity, Ann Arbor, MI, [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—Have you ever struggled to get a breath? Most people do not think about this as breathing comes naturally, until you have asthma. I have adult onset asthma after being exposed to many patients smoking in the mental institutions and prisons where I worked as an RN for many years. This year I had the wonderful fortune of being able to buy raw milk and grass-fed meat. You cannot imagine the difference in my breathing. I can take a very deep breath without struggling. At my checkup this year my Dr. was very impressed with my improvement. “What have you been doing to have such a good oxygen saturation?” The only thing different is raw milk, true grass-fed milk and organic food. —Susan E. Roelofs, RN, Ypsilanti, Mich. 48197 [transcribed from photocopy of original handwritten form]
December 29, 2006—For many years, I did not drink milk at all. I had grown up drinking it, but it seemed to agree with me less and less as I got older, so I just stopped.
When Linda (my wife) started getting raw milk for our family, I was pretty skeptical. It sure tasted better than anything I ever had from a store, but what about the microbes? I truly believed that raw milk was dangerous!
After looking into it and coming to understand more about the processes involved, it became more and more obvious that the opposite is true: milk that has been degraded with extremes of heat and stored for weeks is much more likely to be dangerous than fresh, whole milk that has a balance of organisms in it.
Now that we have this source of high-quality nutrition in our lives, I don’t want to give it up. It seems unbelievable to me that anyone, an individual, a government agency or an industry lobby, would have the right to prohibit something that is so good for people. It seems like something that could only happen in a fascist or communist dictatorship, where the completely ridiculous and nonsensical can be passed off as good public policy. —tvoiles
November 18, 2006—As a youngster I drank raw milk, then my husband and children. it contributed greatly to their having strong immune systems even into adulthood. For a long time we could not find raw dairy and I began drinking Soymilk, and other substitutes and my health declined, I didn’t look healthy nor feel well including no energy. finally I found raw dairy again and I’m happy to say now as senior citizens we have enzyme rich healthy foods to help keep us healthy and active. Thanks to all at Family Farm Cooperative for your integrity and hard work to provide us quality fresh foods. —Arlene, Chicago, Illinois
November 16, 2006—last year I was diagnosed with severe hypothyroidism, after going to a traditional allopathic doctor for last 8 years as my thyroid continued to shut down he totally missed my declining thyroid levels. I saved my blood tests for last 5 years and looked at them after the diagnosis, he totally missed it; after I confronted him about he said your only alternative is replacement thyroid hormone. I fired him on the spot, then I went to endocrinologist she said the same thing .I fired her also and the I went on Mary Shomon’s website for people with thyroid issues and found a doctor thru her website. The optimal wellness center is were I landed, they believe in healing you nutritionally, not just treating your symptoms with health damaging FDA approved drugs, my nutritionist led me to several raw milk sources, with a diet of raw organic milk and raw organic food, I am almost off of all my medication and haven’t felt this good in years. In conclusion I would say raw dairy has helped me greatly in my recovery and never take your health for granted especially with allopathic doctors. The government is looking out for their pockets not your health. —louisj
November 13, 2006—My daughter has anaphylactic reactions to any cow dairy products, but can have all raw goat dairy products. This has been a huge step in improving her overall health. She is now off allergy shots! Without raw dairy, she would lose an important protein and vitamin source in her already restricted diet. —doughgirl
November 13, 2006—As an adult, I can make an informed decision about whether or not to purchase (and consume) raw milk — that is my choice. I certainly don’t need any government agency, State or Federal, telling me otherwise. Call/fax your State senators & representatives today and tell them how you feel! —jillybean
November 12, 2006—I have found replacing my morning routine of coffee and a healthy whole wheat homemade muffin with a smoothie made of raw milk, raw cream, 2 raw eggs, and some raw fruit has alleviated my lethargy and gives me ample energy until lunch. My family has been drinking raw milk for over a year now and it is definitely worth the 40-mile round-trip for me to be able to provide this wholesome food to my family. —jroy
November 12, 2006—I have known for years that I have been lactose intolerant with conventional dairy products. This was not severe but when I would use a conventional dairy product I would bloat and have an overall uncomfortable feeling. I have been blessed to be able to utilize the raw dairy for over three years now and am happy to say that I go through at least one gallon of milk, one quart of cream and one brick of cheese per week with no unpleasant reactions to the raw dairy. There is nothing better than using high quality dairy with the full complement of the seven enzymes naturally occurring within the product to help with the digestion and absorption of the vitamins and minerals. This does not happen with conventional dairy! —glend
November 11, 2006—I’ve had gastrointestinal difficulties ever since I was a child, and as I got older, added allergies to these troubles. As an adult, I finally noticed that my symptoms increased dramatically after consuming any pasteurized milk product. I decided to switch to soy, and my health started to improve.
I met and married my husband and fairly quickly got pregnant. I stayed on the soy products, ate raw, organic foods whenever possible, and I gave birth to a healthy boy. Much to my husband’s and my surprise, at the time our son turned 9 months old, I became pregnant again. This time, I started craving milk products, so badly that I’d cheat and suffer the consequences just to have the milk or cheese or yogurt I was craving so badly. The soy products that contented me during my first pregnancy aren’t satisfying me at all during this one. I’m guessing the reason is because my body didn’t have a chance to replenish its nutritional stores before I became pregnant again, and on top of that, I’m still breastfeeding our now 15-month-old son. My need for calcium is huge.
The solution to my problems came when I tried raw milk at a friend’s house one day and discovered, to my surprise, that I had no reaction at all to it. I set out to find a source of raw milk, bought into the coop I’m now a member of, and have been enjoying the health benefits, not to mention the fabulous taste, of milk straight from the cow, for going on three months now.
I also started my then 12-month-old son on the milk. He was at that time somewhere between the 5th and 10th percentile for weight and length, even though I’d breastfed him. Apparently, I wasn’t healthy enough myself for my breast milk to have all the nutrition he required. As a result of putting him on raw milk, he’s gained several pounds and several more inches in length, as well as a rosy glow of health that’s a joy to behold.
Oh yes, my husband loves the milk too. He’s one of those weird people who doesn’t seem to have any trouble with pasteurized milk, though, so we don’t see any difference in his health. He’s not about to go back to that thin, tasteless junk they sell at the stores, though. I could wish raw milk weren’t so expensive and hard to find, but I’m grateful for the source we have. —Bethany
November 7, 2006—Hi All, We are not part of the family farm Co-op but HIGHLY recommend the use of raw milk and other products. We milk our 5 goats and love the health benefits we get from using the raw milk. It is the best form of calcium you can put in your body. This was one of the best choices we could of made I suffered all my life with allergies and asthma. Not any more and my children are extremely healthy we have no need to go to the doctor. Our diet is as close to nature as possible, we eat almost all organic and it is so worth it…. My Passion is to help others have the same health benefits we have been able to have. —God Bless, Kelly
November 5, 2006—Although we are not members of the Family Farms’ Coop, we have been drinking our milk from our cow for over 3 years now. Our two boys were diagnosed by their pediatricians (Beaumont doctors) with dairy intolerance. Our 5-year-old never slept one night through his first year, until we took him off the milk-based formula. The first night, he slept all night. Pasteurized dairy products give both boys gastrointestinal problems and loose stool (sometimes diarrhea). However, we have been making cultures from raw milk (kefir, yogurt, fil mjolk, crème fraiche), which they not only tolerate very well, but without them, they have digestive problems. Without such products, they would not get both the Calcium they need, and the vitamins and enzymes necessary to absorb the Calcium.
Myself personally, I have had a “low-grade” acid reflux symptoms for years. I used to pop chewable Tums daily – and if I didn’t, my throat would be burning. In cleaning out our pantry last year, I found the untouched large bottle of Tums – and had forgotten I hadn’t even had one in years.
Overall, since we switched to Raw Milk and almost completely organic diet, our overall health has been tremendous. When other kids get sick for a week, our kids get sick for a day, or don’t get sick at all. We hardly ever get sick now. This used to be a 2-3 times per month sick visit to the Pediatricians’ office – it is now 2-3 times per year – ** even though we now have 2 kids in school instead of only 1 **.
We have now included a lot of lacto-fermented foods we make at home (pickles, sauerkraut, and such) to aid in the body’s digestion. The scientific studies we have read on the subject point to a boost in the immune system as well from such foods. — Jay Imerman, Waterford, MI
November 4, 2006—Our family has been part of a Cow Share program for ONE year. My husband is the only one who isn’t drinking raw milk. He is also the only one in our family that gets every cold and flu that comes around. My daughters and I never get whatever bug he has. I attribute this to the raw milk that we are drinking. –Shawn Felicijan
November 4, 2006—I had diarrhea for two years and had upper and lower GI’s and 3 doctors who tried different various remedies which I followed carefully. I lost 36# and still no relief. I was told about raw milk and kefir which is sort of like yogurt but better. Within three weeks of drinking raw milk and making it into kefir, I stopped having diarrhea. That was better than 2 years ago and I have regained my weight and my health and am doing better than I have in some time. I try to find a source of raw milk wherever I go on vacation as well as drinking it daily. —Dr. Bill
November 4, 2006—We began drinking raw milk in 1984, we had “adopted” our 10-year-old nephew and he had health, dental, and learning problems. We gave him all the raw milk he wanted to drink, and fresh food from the farm (grass-fed beef, lamb, poultry, and eggs) he was failing at school when we changed his diet, and he went on to graduate on the honor roll. Not bad for a child that had a third grade reading level in 5th grade! My husband used to suffer terrible bouts of IBS and indigestion. These have disappeared with his consumption of at least a quart of raw Jersey cow milk daily, plus raw milk butter. I have had an uneventful menopause, and we enjoy good health, good bones, and vitality. I believe we owe much of that health to raw dairy products. —Sincerely, Cindy Dutcher
November 4, 2006—A few years ago my 2nd oldest child, Olivia, was struggling with illness after illness. She had strep nearly a dozen times in one year. She was pale, weak and the lymph nodes in her neck were up to 2 inches in diameter. We met with numerous Dr.s and even a surgeon. They were going to remove my 6 year old’s nodes and biopsy them. We were terrified! When medicine didn’t seem to supply answers we sought out natural alternatives. That is what started our quest for REAL milk (and food). Olivia is turning 8 next month. No strep, no flu, no Dr. visits. In fact my Pediatrician has called several times to make sure we haven’t left his practice!!
I have 4 children and am thrilled to report that they are all thriving and healthy. My 2 year old has never known commercial milk. She hasn’t had the ear infections, RSV, flu, intestinal distress, etc that plagued her older siblings. My 6-year-old son, who was labeled “failure to thrive”, is GROWING by leaps and bounds. The Dr had him on pediasure shakes for years and conducted swallow studies and therapy sessions to understand his insufficient growth. We stopped the chemical filled shakes and started REAL milk and he has grown 6 inches and put on 8 pounds. I credit raw dairy for the health of my children. Milk, butter, kefir…ALL instrumental in their welfare. The evidence of success is not only in their change of health but crystal clear when viewing our insurances flexible spending allowance. Our 1600.00 balance for 2006— – still there. —-Momsomnia
November 4, 2006—Since my late teenage years I have suffered from bouts of irritable bowel. I visited doctors and no one could help me. They said to take drugs for the rest of my life. I started drinking raw milk 2 years ago once I read Dr. Mercola’s email recommending raw milk. It has helped me tremendously. I wish I would have known years ago. The health of my kids has improved tremendously also. They suffered from frequent ear infections and Eustachian tube blockage resulting in repeated inserting of ear tubes. Their teeth were so decayed, they had many teeth pulled. Since drinking raw milk, the ear infections don’t occur anymore and the only problems with their teeth are the ones that were worked on previously. No new problems! I’ve spent years trying to figure out how to help them and finally found it – raw milk!!!! —KCaurdy
November 4, 2006—My son, Joshua, has been sensitive to dairy products since birth. He was unable to take any commercial formulas without severe GI upset. Consequently, he went from breast milk to fruit juice at 12 months. He is now 12 years old and started on raw milk 1 year ago. He has had no problems whatsoever. In fact, he loves the taste. Previously, he hated the taste of store bought milk and would not drink it, but he will happily drink 2-3 glasses of the raw milk daily. It is the first time he has ever been able to enjoy milk. —Linda56
November 4, 2006—I was raised on pasteurized milk and I have to say that I was not a healthy child. I suffered from every illness that came through town as well as severe stomachaches that came weekly and lasted 2-3 days and kept me from attending school. I also suffered chronic sinus infections, allergies and bronchitis that persisted into my 20’s until someone suggested that I stop consuming dairy products. It took me an entire year to detoxify my body from the dairy and it was not pretty. My skin was gray and peaked and I had large red welts that looked like acne on my face and neck as my body worked to cleanse itself. I discharged mucous nonstop for a whole year. I went for 10 years after that without consuming any dairy products. Three years ago, I gave birth to my only daughter. When she was 2, I noticed that her teeth were showing decay and I began to research possible causes, that is when I found the Westin Price Foundation and I learned about the benefits of raw milk. I wondered if this was something that I would be able to drink. I found a local farm and gave it a try. We have been drinking this real milk for 6 months and not only did we not get sick but my body had absolutely no troubles digesting or processing this milk. No stomachaches, no sinus infections, no allergies, no bronchitis, no mucous. I realized then that my body didn’t have a problem with cow’s milk; it had a problem with pasteurized cow’s milk—lotusmama1
–End of Family Farms’ Cooperative Testimonials–
Winter 2006—Both my children were diagnosed with asthma. We had the requisite inhalers, regular antibiotics, the 2 AM steam showers, etc., during my trusting-FDA phase, and my husband had bad hay fever every spring and suffered from gout attacks. Since we started a nourishing traditional diet, including raw milk, these symptoms have vanished in my kids–you should see the muscles on those boys!–and are greatly reduced in my husband. He has less stiffness in his joints, no reflux issues and no more gout attacks. Over three years, I have lost 35 pounds. The “H” in one son’s AD/HD disappeared in months. I like to say that a calm has descended on our house. –Mary Blair McMorran, Broomfield, Colorado
Winter 2006–I am pleased that the Foundation has a Real Milk campaign. Except for mother’s milk for six months, I had raw Jersey milk until I was two. I learned to milk on my grandfather’s farm at age seven and had raw Ayrshire milk each summer from age seven to 16. Our family had raw milk from a family Jersey-Holstein cross cow during WWII. When we moved to Cedar Rapids, Iowa, we bought raw Guernsey milk at Moss’s Dairy in Iowa City for almost 25 years. Customers even bought cow shares as the state of Iowa tried to prevent the sale at the farmstead. I was 55 years old when it succeeded. I can’t prove cause and effect, but my health had been excellent and deteriorated afterwards. –Mary Alice Ericson, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Winter 2006–I avoided milk most of my adult life because milk generally gave me gas and abdominal pain. When I became pregnant I found that I craved milk, though it still gave me pain. In my sixth month of pregnancy, I discovered WAPF and began eating traditional foods, seeking out raw milk and finding I could drink 6-8 glasses a day and felt no side effects. My husband and I were both lactose-intolerant babies. Yet our son has never had any discomfort with raw milk. At two years old he is dense and robust, rarely sick and very quick to recover if he does catch a bug. However, on two occasions we have traveled and ran out of our milk from home. I reluctantly let him consume “regular milk.” On both occasions he promptly threw up the milk and continued to eat the rest of his food. –Stephanie Shearer, Canaan, Connecticut
Winter 2006–I had rickets as a child, fibromyalgia as an adult. I’ve had raw milk for two months now and can finally sleep. And my muscle damage from the fibromyalgia is healing! Thank you! –Faye Steuck, Golden, Colorado
Winter 2006–We have new neighbors who moved to the US from Canada. He said that his dad lived to be 93 on a diet of organic raw milk plus a biscuit slathered with raw butter, and black tea for breakfast, the same plus a small potato for lunch, and very little else. They were quite poor but they owned the grass-fed cow from which they got the extremely nutritious milk and butter. . . far better nourishment than most Americans enjoy these days. –Sylvia Zook, Salem, Oregon
Winter 2006–I drank raw milk for 67 of my 80 years, all through the brucellosis years and never had undulant fever nor heard of anyone who did. In any event, I have now reached “geezerhood” and enjoy relatively good health.–Walt Freeman, Jasper, New York
Winter 2006–It was a little over a year ago that I found your realmilk.com website. I honestly had no idea that such a product existed, let alone how valuable a product it was. Within a couple of weeks, I had made my first purchase of certified raw milk from grass-fed Jerseys. It was the most creamy and delicious milk I’d ever tasted.
What I hadn’t counted on was an unexpected benefit from this wonderful milk. For the past 13 years I suffered with severe heartburn and not a day went by when I did not take some type of over-the-counter medication for it. I started drinking raw milk on a Friday and the next day I had no heartburn. It was unbelievable. All day Saturday, then Sunday and so forth, I kept expecting the heartburn to reappear but it never did. It has been a year now since I started drinking raw milk and have been heartburn-free.
But there’s more. I have had elbow pain since I was in my late 20s. After spending a couple of hours stacking wood my elbow became quite sore and by the end of winter I could barely lift a mug. When winter was over and the wood chores gone, it was a good month or so before my elbow was free of extreme pain. Then it was just back to the “usual” pain I had learned to live with.
Last fall, having been drinking raw milk for about five months, I realized that my elbow pain was minimal to non-existent. When winter came I was able to handle the wood, with no elbow problems.
Thank you for your tireless efforts in promoting and defending Real Milk. –Carol Peterson, Caledonia, New York
Spring 2005–I broke my ankle bone (fibula) a month ago, and the doctor said it was a significant injury and may need surgery. I followed the Weston Price protocol for fractures, using 1 teaspoon cod liver oil daily, 1 teaspoon high-vitamin X Factor butter oil daily, lots of raw milk, raw cheese, kefir and bone broths daily, as well as lying in the sun.
Went back for checkup, and doctor said the bone was clinically healed at 4 weeks! I am out of my boot cast and walking all over the place in my sneakers! For a 40-year-old woman, this is quite a testimonial.
I share the beliefs of this organization with everyone, just wanted to say thank you, the diet really works. I have followed a traditional diet for over a year now and really am feeling good these days.
Dade City, Florida
Spring 2005–What a wonderful campaign you’ve embarked upon! It’s illegal to buy raw cow’s milk here in Canada, as far as I know. I’ve spoken to farmers who tell me that they would lose their ability to sell milk at all. Farmers here have to sell their milk to the Dairy Board, who then regulates the price and sells it to the consumer. It’s illegal to bypass the middle-man.
At any rate, my grandfather had a few simple rules when it came to food:
When he had to have surgery at age 81, the surgeon came out and asked his kids, “There must be a mistake. They have your brother listed here as 81. That’s 61, right? That’s not a man in his eighties that I just operated on.” My 59 year old aunt nearly split a gut laughing, saying “Well, that’s my father you have in there.”
We always had raw milk as children, and none of us had allergies or ear infections. My children, and my siblings’ children, have been fed what Grampy called “dead” milk, and they all have allergies, ear infections, etc. I certainly believe that there’s a connection.
My dad was so determined that we have raw milk that he “rented” milk bottles from a nearby farmer. Just the bottles, mind you. The milk in them was a gift from the farmer. Totally illegal, but I’m very glad Dad took the chance. I was well into my teens before I had store-bought milk, and my parents say that all three of us turned our noses right up at it.
Good luck on your campaign. I hope you can spread this throughout the world. If people want to buy dead milk, good for them. I would certainly prefer to buy healthy wholesome food for myself and my children.
Mrs. Marie White
Ottawa, Ontario Canada
Winter 2004–I just wanted to let you know what a blessing your work has been to us. My children are 4 and 7 and had never had milk to speak of because of my terrible allergy. (They were breastfed until 2 years, though.) Any time I ate cheese, I got terrible sinus drainage and asthma. If I drank milk I was sick! I hadn’t drunk milk in 11 years. After learning about raw cheese, I now eat cheese–all I want–which is a lot! We are all so content on this diet! Not hungry all the time. And not eating nearly as much food. Cooking is now much less of a chore for me since I use all the fat and salt I want without feeling bad and things actually taste good. Is there anything worse tasting than a low fat, low salt, high fiber diet?
I have had asthma and allergies ever since I can remember. Took oral cortisone as a child many times. Have been on steroid and bronchial inhalers since they were invented. As an adult, symptoms became systemic lupus, which I completely overcame by cutting out sugar and pasteurized dairy products. But guess what? After I started on raw goat milk, I have been completely off asthma meds and peak flow is still the same! I never thought that would be possible. And we have been having one of the worst allergy seasons ever. I can’t thank you enough! The freedom is wonderful, much less how much money I will save by not ever going to the pharmacy!
Fall 2004–I really wanted to write a letter to thank the Weston A. Price Foundation. I had been a vegetarian and then vegan from the time I was 16 years old, and was very careful to eat plenty of plant-based fats, plant-proteins and whole grains. I had developed a small hole in my heart after receiving a meningitis vaccination when I was almost 12 years old; since then I have been unable to go for a walk or compete in track and field sports without a lot of pain and difficulty. During my first pregnancy, the hole in my heart bothered me terribly and I had anemia. My midwife suggested I eat a little red meat to increase my hemoglobin levels or else I could not have a homebirth. I was so focused on having a homebirth that I sacrificed myself by eating a small amount of beef once or twice a week, but it was not organic or grass-fed. Nonetheless I was able to have a homebirth and then I returned to being vegan.
Everything went downhill from then on. Pregnancy and full-time nursing depleted me so badly that within several months the hole in my heart bothered me so much I couldn’t even walk upstairs without great chest pain; my muscles (particularly my leg muscles) were in so much pain and became weak that I could not walk much and they hurt when I moved them; and my legs were covered with spontaneous bruises. I was constipated with blood in my bowels, constantly tired and my eyes felt bruised to the touch and strained. I thought I was developing cancer. My exclusively nursed daughter was becoming tired and pale and was late in learning to crawl.
I had seen several doctors who could only offer medication and little hope of recovery. I felt I should be able to recover, that my body was doing this because something was wrong and I did not believe medications should be used routinely and regularly or that they would actually help my body get better. So I spent hours searching the internet for answers. I was a very, very strong vegan. I had found an article called “The Ploy of Soy” from your website. I depended largely on soy products and was surprised to think that soy could be part of my problem. I searched more on the subject and decided to cut out soy and see what happened. My bowel problems improved greatly. That softened me to take a more thorough look at the Weston A. Price Foundation website and I began changing the way we eat, taking cod liver oil, taking a colloidal vitamin/mineral supplement to restore my depleted body and using raw milk from pasture-fed Jersey cows, raw butter and cream, raw cheese and yogurt very liberally. I also began soaking my grains, and using organic, grass-fed meats (beef, lamb and pork), stocks, pasture-fed eggs, some lacto-fermented drinks and at times condiments, wild salmon and cod when we can afford it, green vegetables daily, healthy desserts from time to time and other fruit and vegetables for variety and taste.
I recovered well and then some! My daughter is now three years old and I have a six-month-old boy. My daughter is healthy, strong and energetic with rosy cheeks and good teeth. My son was born with a wide face, perfect facial and physical development and strong. He could lift his head at a day old, began creeping and sitting up at three and one-half months and is crawling at five and one-half months and beginning to walk at six months. My labor was fast and easy. I should say that the hole in my heart is completely healed (which was surprising, since it is not common in adults). I have more strength and stamina and have never ever felt so well. My daughter is also healthier than before, so is my husband. I never went through colic or late night crying spells with my son as I did with my daughter. I also no longer have problems with acne and very dry and cracked skin.
I now love food and eating, when before it often made me feel worn out and tired. Thanks so much! I believe God is working miracles because of your organization.
London, Ontario, Canada
Fall 2004–I’m writing in appreciation of the letter on the safety of raw milk, by Mark McAfee in the Spring 2004 Wise Traditions. Living on a small farm, our two children grew up on this milk. At age 4 & 5, the dentist was curious as to why they had such good teeth, “Did they get sweets?” In abundance, actually, thanks to doting friends of the family. Twenty some years later the mystery is solved, when I read that raw milk protects teeth, even in the presence of a diet high in refined carbohydrates.
Now as the grandchildren are coming, our expectant daughter, (and, in turn, three of her expectant friends) is counselled to eliminate raw milk from her diet, the implication being that “it is a constant carrier of listeriosis.” We still offer our milk for sale, and suddenly it seems to be a polluted product. We wonder ourselves what the facts are.
Then I look through a recent issue of Wise Traditions and I find Mark’s letter on how beneficial bacteria in raw milk keep pathogens at bay, which imparts empowering, strengthening information to address implanted anxieties and make educated decisions, renewing loyalty to the product, at least in two households. A “thank you” is small in comparison to the magnitude of what he has undertaken, but it is heartfelt all the same. And to the Foundation, without which there would be no medium to disperse such information widely and give voice to truth.
Fall 2004–I have been enjoying raw milk shipped from Organic Pastures. However, three weeks ago I committed the monumental error of drinking ultra-pasteurized milk for the first time. I have had regular pasteurized milk before and have been able to digest it with the aid of a lactaid supplement, without which I get mild to moderate stomach cramps. Although I took a lactaid tablet when I drank the ultra-pasteurized milk, I slept fitfully that night and woke up the next morning with a terrible stomach ache. By mid-morning I fell violently ill. I was quite literally writhing on the floor. It was absolute agony and it lasted for hours. That stuff should be labeled with a skull and crossbones.
After drinking raw milk I have noted no ill effects. In fact, I feel perfectly fine. Amazing. And raw cream and cheese are absolutely divine.
Fall 2004–I always knew I wanted to have a child but I never knew just how much I would love being a mommy until my little girl was placed in my arms. Many months before conception I began my crusade to get my own body in top shape. My pregnancy was amazing. The worst I endured was some pain in my lower back. We took a birthing class that would teach us to try to have this baby with out drugs or intervention by means of relaxation. I did it–with the help of my husband and our doula. Fifteen hours of labor with no drugs except the pitocin they injected at the end. We had no idea we would have a girl, but there she was with healthy lungs and a full head of hair.
I had never intended to feed my child by any other means than breast-feeding. I didn’t even know it was possible to not have the ability to do this. But it happened to me. My milk never came in. I tried everything I could from five lactation appointments, to pumping every 2-3 hours for nearly two weeks straight, to taking fenugreek and mothers-milk tea. I was told the network to produce milk was not present in my body. The tears just wouldn’t stop. I was devastated.
What choices did I have? Upon recommendation of a consultant I put my child on commercial formula for only a few days and she became so constipated that it killed me to watch her struggle to empty her bowels. I did a ton of research and found out how bad (in my opinion) commercial formula really is. Most are nearly half corn syrup. How could I put this into the body of my child when I worked so hard to start her off right? After telling a dear friend, who has four children of her own, she offered me nearly all of the frozen breast milk she had pumped and stored to give to my child. I had never thought of this possibility and what a gift to us!
For several weeks while giving her breast milk, I did more research and then my nutritionist turned me onto the formula recipes on the Weston A. Price Foundation website. I found a place to buy the raw milk, which is over an hour away, ordered all the ingredients and I was set to try to make homemade formula.
Our little one is truly thriving on this recipe. She is healthy, strong and happy. Even though my pediatrician cannot legally tell me it’s OK to give her raw milk due to liability, my husband and I feel very comfortable and confident we have made the right choice for our child. The benefit of giving her a concoction that is full of wonderful oils and other ingredients far outweighs the time and effort. I want to extend a personal thank you to the Weston A. Price Foundation for this wonderful recipe. We will continue to follow the advice and excellent guidance for feeding that has made such a difference in the health of our child. I pass along my knowledge to others in hopes it will also help another mother who might find herself in my situation. I found my hope and now my only tears are from loving this child so very, very much that I want to burst inside.
Summer 2004–We could not delay in writing this letter to let your readers know how powerful the combination of cod liver oil and butter has been for our children’s growing teeth. Our adopted twins turned three recently and went for their first dental checkup this week. Naturally we were a little nervous since they had had a rough start on cheap formula in the orphanage and we’ve been a little late in getting them off bottles.
Nevertheless, they had not a single cavity and their teeth are beautiful rows of perfectly formed pearls. What a blessing!
We know from experience that their diet made the difference because our first child had many cavities early on. During those years we were still deluded by the “cow’s milk is only for calves” idea that some of our vegetarian mentors had promoted. Then we found out about the Weston A. Price Foundation and switched to animal fats, whole raw milk and plenty of butter and cod liver oil right around the right around the time we got our twins. Just in time to make a world of difference for these kids.
Many thanks to everyone who has helped with the teaching of these important insights!
Spring 2004–In our family, Real Milk has improved the quality of everyone’s life. For our boys and our toddler, they get to drink healthy milk whenever they want. They love the taste and the good feeling they get from this wholesome food and Mom feels good about letting them have it anytime. Our eleven-year-old girl was plagued with allergies to many, many environmental things for most of her life. She was taking three prescription medicines a day. (With insurance, this cost us over $60/month, which will pay for a lot of raw milk!) Within six months of abstinence from pasteurized and homogenized milk and normal consumption of raw milk, she was off all medicine and has been faring well ever since. She still is bothered by cats but leads a normal, healthy, medicine-free life.
Dad is grateful for raw milk because it helped him to get his pre-baby, svelte wife back. Doing nothing else, she lost 30 pounds and returned to her wedding dress size in six months. Mom loves real milk because she knows how good it is for her family, and because it has greatly reduced Dad’s snoring. Yippee–something for everyone!!
Grand Rapids, Mich.
Spring 2004–Just a short story to share. Our pastor and his wife were told many years ago that she was infertile and would never be able to conceive–something to do with a cyst. About 18 months ago I got her to take some butter oil and cod liver oil home and they both started to drink raw milk. Well, today was a joyous day because we learned that our pastor’s wife is pregnant and due this August. I am so happy for them. Her personality is one that begs to have 12 children around her feet at all times. (The doctors don’t know what happened to the cyst.)
Fall 2003–Thank you so much for your advice to switch my children’s milk to raw milk! I corresponded with you three months ago and at the time this seemed like such a leap of faith to give them something that had not been “sanitized.” My kids seem healthier to me. My little Adam now has chubbier cheeks. We miraculously recover from all of our colds in 1-2 days. And these colds are less frequent and much less severe. My husband used to wonder what was wrong with us because we were always sick.
I also feel reassured that with having children in the future I will be able to supplement them with something that really will nourish them. With both of my kids I have struggled with a low milk supply. I battled until the last drop, which for some strange reason was until the age of 11 months for both children. Both needed to be supplemented from 8 months on. I NEVER felt good about giving them Nutramigen or soy formulas. In contrast, every single time I leave the Cox’s family farm with my four gallons of raw milk I feel peaceful.
We have also started taking cod liver oil. My ancestry is Norwegian, Irish and Scottish–all from the coastline. My Irish mother is just amazed. She remembers herself and all her school mates taking cod liver oil and a glass of orange juice every day. She also recalls frequently going next door to the neighbor’s house to fetch a bucket of fresh milk. “Progress” has brought us Twinkies and goldfish crackers. There certainly is wisdom in learning from the past.
Again, thank you so much from an RN who stands corrected. . . not everything must be sterilized!
Cedar Hills, Utah
Spring 2003–Recently I was able to obtain some raw milk. I started my search by calling every dairy I could find, and couldn’t find any that were willing to sell raw milk. Then I tried to locate individuals who might have a family cow, but couldn’t find any.
Finally, I bought some local eggs from the food co-op here and they were of very high quality. Nice, tall, deep yellow yolks. I called the producer and complemented him on the obvious quality of the eggs. I asked if I might bring my children out to his farm to see the animals for a field trip (I home school my children). He said sure. I then asked if he knew of anyone who had a family cow or goat so I could get some fresh milk. He said he gets his from a local Jersey dairy and has for years. I previously had called this dairy and they wouldn’t sell to me. Probably because they don’t know me. Anyway, I asked if he could get a few extra gallons for me. He said sure! I tell you I was dancing on the ceiling for an hour singing praises to the Lord!
Then I went out to meet this man and see his farm. Two things struck me. He was much older than I had imagined. I thought maybe he’d be in his late 50s but he was 89 years old, still strong and vigorous, doing his chores on the farm! What a testament to real foods!
This was my first taste of raw milk, and I found it to be wonderful! The body, texture and flavor is absolutely fantastic. I can taste that it has life and vitality in it. It doesn’t taste like the lifeless, homogenized, pasteurized, plastic flavor of milk from the store, milk that is left on the shelf for weeks. I know this was a huge step in the right direction for our family’s health. Thank you for helping to keep the raw milk movement alive.
Fall 2002–I recently met an expert on pasteurization who casually mentioned that the process destroys 34 enzymes in milk. As one of the great many people lost to the dairy industry as a customer because of alternative practitioner advice that I had “lactose intolerance,” I wondered whether the destruction of the lactase enzyme might be significant in my store-bought milk.
I started drinking quantities of fresh raw milk and had no signs of indigestion nor the mucus I used to get. My wife had both kinds of milk in the fridge for some months and I found if I had just a little of the pasteurized stuff, within an hour the mucus returned.
Then I realized that an arthritic joint at the base of one of my big toes–an old injury site which had gotten so bad my orthopaedic surgeon wanted to fuse the joint to alleviate the pain–had majorly improved. The range of movement deficit which had caused me to limp during the last ten years was almost rectified and the pain gone. This previously swollen joint also reduced in size back to normal.
I am a test group of one, however there were no other variables in my life except the addition to my diet of one-half to one pint each day of fresh Jersey milk for about three months. My doctors can’t believe you can reverse arthritis, but I just did, through sheer inadvertence, not any placebo effect or wishful thinking.
All of the above makes me wonder whether it is pasteurization and the destruction of enzymes that has led to the current plague of arthritis and osteoporosis, because the calcium in processed milk is less assimilable.
Summer 2002–“Baby Blue,” with his beautiful round face, is the picture of health. His parents, Dr. and Mrs. Bruce West, are starting him out well on a Wise Traditions diet. When he continued to fuss on breast milk alone, his parents began giving him a supplemental bottle of homemade baby formula based on raw whole milk. Baby Blue is now as happy as can be on a combination of his mother’s milk and supplemental formula.
Summer 2002–I have been involved in your organization for a year now and my health keeps improving. I had hypoglycemia and was a vegetarian. I could not understand why I craved sugar and gained weight. My periods were coming every two weeks. Then I stopped eating soy and began taking cod liver oil. My periods evened out to every six weeks, and were much less painful. In addition, my blood sugar is much more balanced.
Raw milk and fats have changed the way I think about food. Now I look forward to meals, knowing that I’m eating well and giving my body what it needs to be well.
An older lady friend of mine has been suffering terribly from arthritis. I introduced her to your literature and she started drinking raw milk and eating more eggs and butter. Within two weeks her symptoms were 80 percent better.
My sister has suffered from severe allergies for years and resorted to using Benadryl whenever she would visit our house with all its pets. She started drinking raw milk and her allergies have dramatically improved.
I have so many stories, I could go on and on, but suffice it to say, thank you!
Marianne F. Kelsey
North Manchester, Ind.
Summer 2002–You often hear the argument, “Man is the only animal that continues to drink milk after being weaned,” presuming the animals stop milk ingestion because they don’t need or it is harmful to continue it and therefore humans should follow suit. Having witnessed our sheep wean their lambs, I assure you there is only one reason they stop “drinking milk”–that was because the source was no longer available to them! American mothers often discontinue nursing their babies for their own convenience, but most children would continue nursing or taking a bottle for years if allowed. Hence, the length of time animals or humans nurse their young says nothing about vital nutrients in the milk and its benefits.
If it not difficult to determine why animals and humans must wean their young–the population of both would have long ceased otherwise as neither animals nor humans can continue nursing the first offspring while at the same time reproducing and nursing others. Until the last century, the average family included seven children. Our sheep would have had to nurse half a dozen offspring simultaneously before they stopped bearing. Animals with multiple births could not possibly nurse countless offspring; except for weaning and forcibly denying a continual supply of milk, animal and human life could not have survived. Certain wild animals do fairly well with raw meat or grazing. However, today’s depleted soils on which fruits and vegetables are grown, plus countless other reasons for less-than-optimal human nutrition, give reasons to compensate with raw, whole milk from cows grazed on green grass. I do not recommend supermarket milk. (I suspect that confined cows fed grains and hay rather than grazing on untreated, growing green grass, and pasteurized/homogenized dairy products with pesticides, hormones and antibiotics are the cause of allergy and intolerance to milk.) But let’s not throw the baby out with the bath water. We must differentiate between real foods and “faux foods”–be they milk, fats and oils, or meat substitutes.
Sylvia Zook, PhD
Spring 2002–On the listing for Shepard’s Farm, Woodbridge, CT – Farm has all Jerseys and all are grass fed (we have been going there for about 6 years, got to know the family well!). They offer brown eggs from grain-fed hens and farm-made butter. The farm has been in business since 1887 and has been run solely by the Shepard family of Woodbridge, CT. Wonderful people! Great experience for the family and kids watching the cows getting milked and helping to feed the new babies! Thanks for your web site.
I’d like to wake up the USA to raw milk’s benefits. Our Mollie was 4 lbs and 15 ” at birth. Doctor said she’d be a very small and frail girl. After drinking nothing but raw milk since one, she is now a picture of health, rarely ever sick (as all of us have been since drinking raw milk from Jerseys). She just went for her 4-year check up and the doctor was astonished at her growth and strength! Chalk another one up for the goodness God created! Pure and natural.
Spring 2002–My name is Winford J. Barlow (nickname Finney). I live in the small town of Hildale on the Utah and Arizona border (about 40 miles from St. George). I have been milking Brown Swiss milkcows for about 5 or 6 years. I started with 2 cows, milking them with a small vacuum pump and De Laval style milk can. Since then I have built a small barn that is designed to milk two at a time with a low line system and a 150 gal. bulk tank. I am now milking 10 cows, all Brown Swiss. They are all purebred but they are not registered. I am using a registered bull. I started to sell my milk to my friends and neighbors when I had more than I could use. At this time I am producing about 50 gal. a day. We make alot of raw milk cheese because we have not been able to sell all we produce.
I put a flyer on the wall at the local C-store and about one month ago, the Utah dairy inspecter saw it. He came and inspected my dairy and told me that I would either have to get certified or quit selling milk. I told him I would do whatever they required of me and he said he would give me three weeks to get it into compliance. I had to get the vet to check for T.B. and Bangs and have the results posted in the barn, I had to finish all of the interior of the milk room and seal any exposed wood (it harbors bacteria). I had to install a hand wash station and invent a mechanical capper for the bottles ( I can bottle by hand but I can’t put the lid on by hand). I even had to go and get a physical myself. I have spent over $2000 in the last month getting all this done. He came back last week and did a final inspection and took a milk sample. He said that he was very pleased with all I had done.
The first sample came back bad. (standard plate count was 60,000) so we changed some of our milking and cleaning habits. He said we should have sanitized the fill spout before we bottled the sample, that might be why the count was so high. The standard plate count can’t be over 20,000 and the coliform count can’t be over 10. The second sample he took came back good (spc 5,600 and coliform 1 ). He took two more samples this week and said he would have the results by this friday, at that point I will be a CERTIFIED RAW MILK DAIRY IN UTAH.
I am excited about getting this certification so I can expand my market into the other towns in the area. I have a website but I haven’t updated it for some time but I will soon. it is at www.finneyfarm.com I use no hormones or drugs, I live cover all our cows and feed alfalfa hay and a dairy ration from the local feed mill. We are in the process of building a pasture but we are waiting on the water. Our customers are very pleased with our product, sweet, fresh, and a nice creamline (about four inches). I have tried to make this the best milk possible. I don’t have a real good understanding of the dairy business, but I am always learning. I was very excited to find your website and see all the effort you are doing. Let me know if I can help.
Hildale, Utah 84784-0354
Fall, 2001 — I spoke with you about a year ago because I wanted to use a homemade raw goat milk formula for my adopted baby. Well, almost a year has gone by and my baby has thrived, thrived, thrived. Thank you for making this information available for mothers of adopted children.
Fall, 2001—I love the stories I am told by Noah, our local goat farmer. He has sold raw goat milk to three generations of country folk. Mothers whose babies are sickly and the doctors can’t figure out what to do bring their babies to him as a last resort. He gives them a supply of milk and the babies become “show and tell,” all fat and pink. One baby was on its death bed. The doctor said not to give it raw milk when the mother questioned him. They went to the goat farmer anyway. The baby was covered with pussy hives and dying. The farmer gave them the milk, but he was sure that this child was too far gone. When he didn’t hear back from the parents, he assumed the baby had died. One month later, they were back for more milk (they had bought a month’s supply, frozen) with a different child-so Noah thought. Until they told him it was the same child-but healthy.
Fall 2000–I have been furnishing my son’s pediatrician with information on trans fats and soy products. She is the second pediatrician that I have spoken to that had heard nothing about the problems with soy infant formula. What’s going on? Seems to me, if anyone should know, it would be the pediatricians. I will make a copy of the “Soy Alert!” article in your magazine, plus the article on teeth and bone health with raw milk and forward it to her.
As for raw milk, Cody, my son, has always been tiny. He was full term, but only weighed just over four pounds at birth. His growth rate had always remained below what it should be. At almost six years, he only weighed 32 pounds. He also had been on four different allergy medications-Claritin, Flonase, Tanafed and Extendryl. Two weeks after my finding a source of raw Jersey milk, he no longer needed any medicine.
When I took him to the pediatrician, she wanted to know what I had done because Cody had gained four pounds and grown about one-and-one-half inches in a month. I told her and, surprisingly, she was for it. After all, what could she say? She has been his doctor since his birth.
Another story: Years ago Elton Maddox had a dairy. Some people he knew had a very sick baby. Elton said, “The little thing was as poor as a rail, and cried all of the time.” A baby specialist in Charleston told the baby’s father to find someone with a cow that had not been fresh for more than six weeks, and get the milk for the baby. Elton’s wife told the baby’s father that she was afraid that the milk would be too rich, give the baby diarrhea and that they might lose it. The father said that they were going to lose it anyway, so he wanted to try the milk. Elton separated out a Guernsey, milked her specially for the baby. The next day the baby’s mother wanted him to “come in and see something.” He went in and there was the baby sleeping peacefully. After putting it on the milk, the little thing got better, and did just fine.
Fall 2000–I want to acknowledge you for the incredible gift of life the Foundation is giving with their information on traditional diets. It has made an enormous positive change in our lives.
About three years ago my kids (now 8 and 9) and I were diagnosed with giardia. For six months we had been dealing with continual vomiting and diarrhea. My daughter, who only weighed 40 pounds to start with, had lost one-third of her body weight and things were not looking good. The medical profession had basically given up on us. We had tried every antibiotic we could with no success. It was on one such trip to the emergency room that the doctors told us we needed to look at alternative forms of healing as they had nothing else to offer us.
We were referred to a naturopath who tested each of us and immediately changed our diets and got us started on a homeopathic remedy for giardia. We were reacting to numerous foods and still do. He had us quit eating most additives and preservatives as well as all forms of goat and cow milk, including whey, butter, yogurt and cheese. My son had to stay away from all forms of MSG, chemically produced as well as naturally occurring. Our diets were so restrictive that eating became something we did out of necessity, and cooking was a chore. As long as we ate all meals at home and I cooked everything from scratch, I could count on a peaceful night’s sleep. But one treat at school, or a snack at a friend’s house, and I knew we would be up for a good four hours with vomiting and diarrhea. I dreaded holidays and family get-togethers. I felt so sorry for my kids who got sick whenever they ate things other kids took for granted, like pizza, tacos and lasagna.
Last year, however, a couple things happened that left me in the inquiry stage. We visited my aunt and uncle’s farm when they happened to be milking the goats. My kids have always reacted to goat’s milk. However, this time they went down to the barn with my uncle, milked the goats and proceeded to consume very large quantities of goat milk fresh from the goat before I realized what they were doing. They had had so much fun it crushed me to know in a few hours they would be deathly ill. Evening came and went and neither of them got sick.
Then a couple months ago we were visiting them again and we all tried some homemade ice cream, once again made from raw goat milk. Again, no one became ill. On a subsequent visit to our naturopath, he shared his thoughts on why he felt pasteurized, homogenized milk products were behind the rising rate of heart disease. The pieces began falling into place. Why could my kids drink goat milk fresh from the goat and not get sick? Yet when they were tested, they reacted to store-bought milk and it made them sick. It clicked. the naturopath’s machine tests products in the form that most people use. His machine was testing pasteurized products or commercially prepared products, not products fresh from the farm or cultured in my kitchen. The milk from the store was pasteurized. The milk on the farm was raw.
Then I got into culturing foods, like piima, kefir, and cultured butter, and have been sampling it all with none of the usual side effects. Yesterday I had the opportunity to use the machine to have all of the products I’ve made tested on my children. The kids were cheering every time a new food product was added to their diet and I was stunned to see the results.
The results were fascinating. The kefir I had left sitting out for 12 hours didn’t work for the kids. The kefir that had sat out for 2 days passed easily. I used whole, non-homogenized milk when making the kefir. I also had several brands of raw cheese (goat and cow) tested on them. The raw cheese was fine. The pasteurized cheese was not. We tried two different bottles of soy sauce. The first one was some organic soy sauce that was fermented two summers and it didn’t pass the test. The second bottle was some organic soy sauce that was fermented four years and it was unpasteurized. It passed!
My kids are on cloud nine. They ate cheese in the car on the way home and had real butter on toast for a bedtime snack! They had oatmeal soaked in whey for breakfast and butter on their green beans and broccoli for dinner.
Learning about raw dairy products and cultured foods has opened a whole new world up to our family. I am once again excited about cooking and even spent some time hanging out in a kitchen store today looking at the new gadgets available! Thank you for making a difference in so many people’s lives.
Lake Oswego, Ore.