Minnesota Judge Declines to Punish Dairy Farmer

Sometimes the biggest indicator that cultural change is on the way is when law enforcers start to look the other way. Coming on the heels of high-profile articles that praise full-fat, natural dairy products (including Mark Bittman’s proclamation that “Butter is Back” in The New York Times) and the proposal of 2 federal laws to end federal crackdown on the distribution of raw milk, a Minnesota judge has declined to punish a farmer for selling raw milk and violating his parole.

In 2012, dairy farmer Michael Hartmann pled guilty to selling unpasteurized milk and was given probation, which he violated by continuing to sell. In June 2014, the judge in Hartmann’s hearing stated that “the defendant had made a ‘good faith effort’ and ‘no further action’ would be necessary.”

Hartmann’s case is still ongoing with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture but he and his family see this as a court victory.

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