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Book Data

ISBN: 9781603582193
Year Added to Catalog: 2009
Book Format: Paperback
Dimensions: 6 x 9
Number of Pages: 288
Book Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing
Old ISBN: 1603582193
Release Date: October 26, 2009
Web Product ID: 475

Also By This Author

The Raw Milk Revolution

Behind America's Emerging Battle Over Food Rights

by David E. Gumpert

Foreword by Joel Salatin



In These Times


Got Raw Milk?

Small farmers and consumer advocates say unpasteurized milk bans are about protecting big industry.

by Marie Landau

In Massachusetts, a controversy over raw milk regulations has cast doubt on our seemingly basic right to unprocessed food. Government, public health and dairy industry officials want to restrict the sale and distribution of raw (unpasteurized) milk, citing grave safety concerns. But small dairy farmers, organic consumers’ advocates and raw milk drinkers say the issue isn’t safety—it’s control of the dairy market.

In January, the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR) proposed new regulations that would ban off-the-farm sale and distribution of raw milk. Prior to making the revamped regulations public, MDAR issued cease-and-desist orders to four milk-buying clubs that buy raw milk directly from small farmers and distribute it among members. MDAR Commissioner Scott Soares insists the clubs’ activities are illegal and that the new rules are “intended to be a clarification over what has always been the case.”

Read the whole article here.

Living On Earth

Heated Debate Over Heating Milk

by Jessica Ilyse Smith

Across the U.S. many state governments are taking up the debate about raw or unpasteurized milk. Living on Earth’s Jessica Ilyse Smith reports that while some people claim that raw milk can carry harmful bacteria, making it a threat to public safety, others say just the opposite - that unpasteurized milk can have positive health benefits and a better taste to boot.

YOUNG: It's Living on Earth, I'm Jeff Young. Some milk fans say they're getting a raw deal. Raw, or unpasteurized, milk is the subject of intense debate in state legislatures across the country. Public health officials say it's a threat. But raw milk proponents say the health and taste benefits outweigh the risks. Living on Earth's Jessica Ilyse Smith has our story.

SMITH: On a sunny Monday morning on the Boston Commons, Suzanne the cow munches on grass and clover.


SMITH: In the heart of the city this is an uncommon scene. But Suzanne's brown coat, blue collar and large cowbell draw attention during the 9 am rush. Kids run up to pet her. And the cow's owner, Edgar Plees offers passersby a drink.

PLEES: Our cows have a high percentage of butterfat, which makes it a richer, creamier milk. Everyone who tastes it says, 'wow, that tastes really different.'

SMITH: One of those tasters is Dennis Walsh who spots the cow and comes over to grab a Dixie cup filled with raw milk.

WALSH: It tastes creamy; it tastes like milk, really—you know what I remember it used to taste like. I would drink more milk if I had that.

SMITH: Taste is a selling point for raw milk advocates. Farmer Plees says there are reasons people want to drink the fresh, unpasteurized milk.

Read the whole article here.

Biodynamic Farming and Gardening Association

Food Freedom: An Interview with David Gumpert
by Rebecca Briggs

The key concept that you bring up right in your title is that raw milk is an issue of food rights. Would you go so far as to say that this is really a civil rights issue?

I’d say it certainly is a lot like a civil rights issue. I guess you could call it a civil rights issue. That’s interesting, I hadn’t really thought of it. I mean, it’s an issue that’s so fundamental that the framers of the Constitution didn’t even think to mention it because there was no issue in those days about food rights. They had a lot of other rights issues — about rights against self-incrimination and the rights to assembly and right to free speech and freedom of religion. So they didn’t think to write about that.

But it’s been turned into a civil rights issue by our own governmental authorities. I mean, they are very gradually forcing more and more foods to be processed in different ways — and foods that growing numbers of people want to be able to consume unprocessed. This includes things like apple cider and vegetable juice and almonds, and now it’s beginning to include meats and leafy greens that might be irradiated. Eventually it could be meats that are cloned, genetically modified food, and, to the extent that those kind of processes become common place, it becomes difficult or impossible to get the original unprocessed food.

So I’d say it is a civil right.

And so milk is really representative?

Yes, I call it a proxy issue. Milk is, I’d say, out there because there are specific laws against it that people are becoming aware of as they decide that maybe pasteurized milk isn’t so great and because maybe the processing damages the milk and makes it less nutritionally beneficial or in various ways alters it so that it’s not easily digested, or whatever. Then the raw milk becomes more desirable to more people, and what people are finding is what I talk about with these other foods. You go to the store in most places in the country and you cannot find raw milk in the store. So you have to make all these special arrangements, and in about twenty states it’s illegal to sell raw milk at all. So that’s the kind of dilemma that people are facing.

Read the whole article here.


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