The Raw Milk Revolution takes readers behind the scenes of the government’s tough and occasionally brutal intimidation tactics, as seen through the eyes of milk producers, government regulators, scientists, prosecutors, and consumers. It is a disturbing story involving marginally legal police tactics and investigation techniques, with young children used as political pawns in a highly charged atmosphere of fear and retribution.
Here’s an interview David E. Gumpert did with the Biodynamic Farming and Gardening Association:
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.
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