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Real Raw Milk Facts

Raw Milk in the News

Pennsylvania Agriculture Department Warns Consumers to Discard Raw Milk from Snyder County Dairy Re

Apr 18, 2014 by Real Raw Milk Facts

HARRISBURG, Pa., April 18, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/—Consumers who purchased raw milk from Greenfield Dairy, 1450 Tittle Road, Middleburg, should discard it immediately due to possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture today said raw milk collected during required routine sampling by a commercial laboratory on April 8 tested positive for the bacteria.

Greenfield Dairy owned by Paul Weaver, sells directly to consumers at an on-farm retail store. The packaged raw milk is sold under the Greenfield Dairy label in half gallon glass containers dated April 18, 21, 22 and 24. It is labeled as “raw milk.”

Agriculture officials have ordered the owner of the dairy to stop the sale of all raw milk until further notice. Two samples taken at least 24 hours apart must test negative before the farm can resume raw milk sales.

Raw milk is milk that has not been pasteurized.

Pennsylvania law allows farms to sell raw milk but requires the farms to be permitted and inspected by the agriculture department to reduce health risks associated with unpasteurized products. There are 175 farms in Pennsylvania permitted to sell raw milk or raw milk cheese.

Symptoms of Listeriosis usually appear within 1-3 weeks, but can be as short as 3 days or as long as 70 days after consumption and include fever, muscle aches and gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea or diarrhea. If the infection spreads to the nervous system, symptoms such as headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance or convulsions can occur.

Infected pregnant women may experience only a mild, flu-like illness, but infections during pregnancy can lead to miscarriage or stillbirth.

To date, the Pennsylvania Health Department is not aware of any illnesses related to these products. Any person who consumed raw milk from Greenfield Dairy and has symptoms should consult their physician, visit their local state health center or call 877-PA HEALTH (724-3258). 

For more information about Listeriosis, visit http://www.health.state.pa.us.

Media contacts:
Samantha Elliott Krepps, 717-787-5085
Holli Senior, Department of Health, 717-787-1783      

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture

Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1860299#ixzz2zHKyERwo

More Battling Than Policy Changes Mark 2014 State Raw-Milk Action

Apr 14, 2014 by Real Raw Milk Facts

Food Safety News
By Dan Flynn | April 14, 2014

There are still multiple endings that could be put on the raw-milk story told during the 2014 state legislative season.

One popular theory is that the foodies and libertarians have joined hands in a great coalition to pass bills to legalize unpasteurized milk across the land. These theorists point to 40 bills introduced in 23 statehouses during the current legislative season. Another possibility is that not all that much has changed in 2014 except for the fact that raw milk advocates are now more visibly split in their ranks on the direction their movement should take.

After Wisconsin’s “raw milk outlaw” Vernon Hershberger was found not guilty of operating without various licenses at the infamous Baraboo trial last year, his vocal opposition to GOP state Sen. Glenn Grothman’s bill to make licensed raw milk sales legal in Wisconsin became symbolic of the split.

All states are equal, but not when it comes to raw milk. Wisconsin is America’s dairy state, with around $30 billion of pasteurized milk sales. After Hershberger came out against Grothman’s bill for raw milk sales that involved some licensing and regulation, the bill went nowhere and is now officially dead.

Continue reading, “More Battling Than Policy Changes Mark 2014 State Raw-Milk Action” at Food Safety News.

KY Republican Puts Together Left-Right Coalition to Allow Interstate Raw Milk Sales

Mar 28, 2014 by Real Raw Milk Facts

Food Safety News
Dan Flynn | March 28, 2014

A left-right libertarian coalition led by U.S. Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) is sponsoring two bills in Congress to permit the interstate sales of raw milk. Massie says the bills are but the first in a series of “food freedom” measures he plans to introduce. One would overturn the interstate ban on raw milk, while the other would permit interstate shipment of raw milk only if two states already permitted intrastate sale.

The Milk Freedom Act of 2014 (HR 4307) would provide relief to local farmers, small producers and others who “have been harassed, fined, and in some cases even prosecuted” for the “crime” of distributing unpasteurized milk, Massie says. It would prohibit the federal government from interfering with the interstate traffic of raw milk products.

The Interstate Milk Freedom Act (HR 4308) would prevent the federal government from interfering with the trade of unpasteurized natural milk or milk products between the states where distribution or sale of such products is already legal.

Massie says no provision of either bill would preempt or otherwise interfere with any state law regarding raw milk.

Continue reading, “KY Republican Puts Together Left-Right Coalition to Allow Interstate Raw Milk Sales” at Food Safety News.

Sponsor of Maryland Raw-Milk Cow-Share Bill Gives Up

Mar 26, 2014 by Real Raw Milk Facts

Food Safety News
Dan Flynn | March 26, 2014

The individual cow-share (or herd-share) scheme Maryland legislative analysts said could double the number of the state’s raw milk-caused outbreaks is dead. Delegate James Hubbard (D-Bowie) withdrew House Bill 3 on Monday after failing to get it through the House Health and Government Operations Committee.

The veteran legislator could not dislodge HB 3 from the committee after the Department of Legislative Services reported that the bill could both double raw-milk outbreaks and increase the number of sporadic or isolated cases of illnesses from unpasteurized milk from almost none today to 100 to 165 a year. Legislative services provides Maryland lawmakers with independent fiscal and policy analyses of bills.

Dr. Katherine Feldman, of the Maryland Department of Health’s Infectious Disease Bureau, was also concerned about the dangers of unpasteurized milk. She said raw milk is conducive to the growth of various bacteria.

“Pasteurization is the cornerstone of milk safety and a triumph of public health,” Feldman said.

Hubbard got a little bipartisan help from Delegate Nic Kipke (R-Anne Arundel), who argued that raw milk should be legal since alcohol, cigarettes, oysters and tanning also have health risks but are legal and available in the state.

Continue reading, “Sponsor of Maryland Raw-Milk Cow-Share Bill Gives Up” at Food Safety News.

Maine’s Legal Raw Milk Business May Evade Licensing and Inspections

Mar 13, 2014 by Real Raw Milk Facts

Food Safety News
By Dan Flynn | March 11, 2014

Raw milk regulation in the form of licensing and inspection would have gone away in Maine last year had Gov. Paul LePage not vetoed the legislation because it allowed off-the-farm sales.

Opponents of raw milk licensing and inspection are back this year with a bill that limits unregulated raw milk sales to the farm and prohibits any signage or other advertising. It allows only face-to-face sales. The re-worked bill from last session is slowly making its way through legislative committees, but it’s uncertain whether it will have time enough to get back to LePage’s desk before adjournment in mid-April.

Ronald Dyer, quality assurance and regulations director for the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, favors the bill as long as it contains language limiting sales to the farm or a farm stand located on contiguous property, the product is labeled as not pasteurized, and farms post signs stating that the milk is not pasteurized, licensed or inspected by the state.

Dyer says his agency “strongly supports many programs to help farmers in selling raw milk and homemade food products, and we take great pride in the ongoing work to assure we remain as flexible as possible to the needs of small producers.”

He adds that the department “should fully acknowledge and consider the widely known risks of consuming raw milk, and we believe the bill … sets a reasonable balance by ensuring an informed consumer is buying directly on-farm from the farmer.”

Dyer says both the farmer and the consumer “will be fully aware the product is not pasteurized” because of the requirements in the bill.

Continue reading, “Maine’s Legal Raw Milk Business May Evade Licensing and Inspections” at Food Safety News.

Study Shows Once and for All That Raw Milk Doesn’t Help Lactose Intolerance

Mar 13, 2014 by Real Raw Milk Facts

Time
Alexandra Sifferlin | March 10, 2014

Unpasteurized “raw” milk has become popular with some drinkers who say it’s better for the lactose-intolerant among us despite FDA warnings against it, but a new study says raw milk causes the same symptoms seen in folks who can’t drink the regular stuff

Only a small population of people drink unpasteurized milk, also known as “raw” milk, but its increasing popularity has some medical groups concerned. Some raw milk advocates argue that it’s healthier for us since raw milk contains no antibiotics or hormones, while others say it’s better for people with lactose allergies. For its part, the FDA advises against drinking raw milk, which can contain bacteria from fecal matter and sometimes be fatal, and has long stated that it doesn’t help with lactose intolerance.

But a new study published in the Annals of Family Medicine is definitively poking holes in the allergy theory, by reporting that lactose-intolerant people have the same symptoms from raw and pasteurized milk.

Continue reading, “Study Shows Once and for All That Raw Milk Doesn’t Help lactose Intolerance” at Time.

Maine’s Legal Raw Milk Business May Evade Licensing and Inspections

Mar 11, 2014 by Real Raw Milk Facts

Food Safety News
By Dan Flynn | March 11, 2014

Raw milk regulation in the form of licensing and inspection would have gone away in Maine last year had Gov. Paul LePage not vetoed the legislation because it allowed off-the-farm sales.

Opponents of raw milk licensing and inspection are back this year with a bill that limits unregulated raw milk sales to the farm and prohibits any signage or other advertising. It allows only face-to-face sales. The re-worked bill from last session is slowly making its way through legislative committees, but it’s uncertain whether it will have time enough to get back to LePage’s desk before adjournment in mid-April.

Ronald Dyer, quality assurance and regulations director for the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, favors the bill as long as it contains language limiting sales to the farm or a farm stand located on contiguous property, the product is labeled as not pasteurized, and farms post signs stating that the milk is not pasteurized, licensed or inspected by the state.

Dyer says his agency “strongly supports many programs to help farmers in selling raw milk and homemade food products, and we take great pride in the ongoing work to assure we remain as flexible as possible to the needs of small producers.”

He adds that the department “should fully acknowledge and consider the widely known risks of consuming raw milk, and we believe the bill … sets a reasonable balance by ensuring an informed consumer is buying directly on-farm from the farmer.”

Dyer says both the farmer and the consumer “will be fully aware the product is not pasteurized” because of the requirements in the bill.

Unlike many state dairy organizations, the Maine Dairy Industry Association supports the legal status raw milk enjoys in the Pine Tree State. However, MDIA Executive Director Julie-Marie Bickford is on record as “deeply concerned” because this year’s raw milk bill lessens the oversight and education that accompanies licensing and inspection.

“Food safety is one of the most critical issues for anyone producing products for consumption, human or otherwise,” Bickford says. “Traditionally, milk has been one of the most heavily regulated products on the planet for the reason that it requires very precise care and handling in both its production and storage to ensure that it does not become a host for a variety of bacteria (most of which are naturally occurring) that could pose dangers to human health.”

Continue reading, “Maine’s Legal Raw Milk Business May Evade Licensing and Inspections” at Food Safety News.

Video: Parents of Sickened Girl Urge Others Not to Feed Children Raw Milk

Feb 19, 2014 by Real Raw Milk Facts

Food Safety News
News Desk | February 19, 2014

Kylee Young was 23 months old when she contracted an E. coli O157:H7 infection from drinking raw milk. The illness hospitalized her for months, caused her to have a stroke and eventually required her to receive a kidney transplanted from her mother.

Kylee’s parents, Jill Brown and Jason Young, are now speaking out to urge other parents not to feed raw milk to their children, as children are especially vulnerable to foodborne pathogens potentially present in unpasteurized milk.

“There might be some benefits of raw milk, but there are huge risks,” said Brown, Kylee’s mother. “There needs to be more public awareness that this is a high-risk food. If I had known what I know now, I would never have fed it to my daughter.”

Kylee Young’s Story from Food Safety News on Vimeo.

Raw Milk Advertising Restrictions Eased After Free Speech Lawsuit Win

Feb 19, 2014 by Real Raw Milk Facts

The Inquisitor
February 17, 2014

Raw milk advertising regulations have been eased in Oregon after the state Department of Agriculture settled a First Amendment lawsuit pertaining to unpasteurized dairy promotions. The free speech lawsuit was brought by a Libertarian public interest firm, The Institute for Justice, on behalf of Christine Anderson, a McMinnville dairy farmer.

The Oregon Department of Agriculture agreed to ask the state legislature to repeal the raw milk advertising ban and not to enforce such regulations during the review process. “Christine is part of a nationwide movement of small-scale food producers and consumers are tired of the government dictating what foods they can grow, sell, and eat,” attorney Michael Bindas said after the free speech lawsuit settlement.

Continue reading, “Raw Milk Advertising Restrictions Eased After Free Speech Lawsuit Win” at The Inquisitor.

Mother warns Iowa against raw milk

Feb 19, 2014 by Real Raw Milk Facts

The Des Moines Register
By Tony Leys | February 10, 2014

A California mother who almost lost her son to a bacterial infection urged Iowa lawmakers Monday not to legalize the sale of unpasteurized milk.

Mary McGonigle-Martin recounted how E. coli bacteria infected her son, Christopher, after she gave him unpasteurized milk, also known as raw milk. “The damage done by this bacteria is incomprehensible,” she said at a Statehouse hearing.

McGonigle-Martin said she had believed natural-food enthusiasts’ claims that raw milk was healthier than unpasteurized milk. But the bacteria caused severe damage to her son’s kidneys and pushed him into heart failure, she said.

Continue reading, “Mother warns Iowa against raw milk” at the Des Moines Register.

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Several families offered to share their stories on video to help raise awareness about the potential risks and negative effects on health from drinking contaminated raw milk.