This story is reprinted from Augie’s “Journal of Natural Food and Healing“:
It is now obvious that various groups are now unifying in the raw milk revolution. It is a battle of food and farming freedom centered around natural, raw milk; and one of individual liberty. Now is the time for all to stand up to be counted in this fast-growing movement.
U.S. and Canadian Raw Milk ALERT: Alliances for Raw Milk (ARMs) and Statement by Michael Schmidt
Schmidt: Form Alliances Now. Food Freedom crises is global in nature and beyond our imagination. This is our chance now for the future of our children.
Pirtle: the new unified Alliances that are beginning to form around the world are voicing a universal outcry of citizens.
Staven: There appears to be a political backlash . . . We can no longer sit idle and watch our inherent rights be cast aside in favor of corporate profits.
TORONTO, ONTARIO, CANADA (January 10, 2010)– U.S. and Canadian Alliances for Raw Milk (ARMs) have announced their formation. These Alliances for Raw Milk (US ARM and Canadian ARM) and Family Farm and Food Freedom are to promote connections between natural farmers and dairies and families who want fresh, wholesome and healthy natural food choices based on their nutritional education.
The ARMs and their members have declared they have the right and freedom to choose the foods they deem to maintain and restore their health and the right to farm their own land and trade/share the produce with others. The Alliances also come at a time of unwarranted and rapidly increasing legal, regulatory and enforcement actions by state, provincial and federal agencies against small natural, sustainable and organic farms and food operations, especially in the dairy arena.
The Canadian ARM is already organized in Ontario and British Columbia. In the U.S. the states of Wisconsin and Ohio are well underway with thousands of members and more states are pending. Sources in major U.S. raw milk groups say there is strong interest for the EU and Australia and India to join forces in the Alliance.
Internationally known Michael Schmidt, co-director of Canadian ARM told the Journal that he wishes to communicate to the new Alliances and to all farmers and consumers of local, fresh food that:
“Forming local state, federal and international alliances of concerned individuals is of utmost importance. What has to be burning in our soul, is the urge to be free and the determination not to be returned to a modern form of slavery. Blinded by wealth, comfort and convenience we are in grave danger of unconsciously consenting to the takeover of our well being by Government.This battle about raw milk is a battle about food freedom and our individual rights.This is not an isolated battle, this is a global issue beyond our imagination.”
Michael Schmidt, a Canadian degreed biodynamic dairy farmer and teacher has become a well-known North American icon in the food freedom battle. Schmidt owns Glencolton Farms and got arrested this summer again at raw milk Dumpsite 41. His farm was raided by the Ministry of Health and police by 20 armed guards – holding him as a prisoner in his own house for an entire day three years ago – taking all the milk products to the city dump. This is the latest in a series of harassments that date back since 1994. He faces a $50,000 fine and imprisonment on January 21. Schmidt is charged for his disobedience for three years of court orders to make him stop providing raw milk to friends and family who actually own the cows he cares for.
At a court and rally right before Christmas in Viroqua, WI, Michael Badnarik, a Libertarian Presidential candidate in 2004 and considered a constitutional scholar and statesman, declared that “nowhere is there in laws or constitutions that governments must tell us what we can or cannot eat. Who owns our bodies? We do.” That event led to the formation of the Wisconsin ARM.
Kaythlene Pirtle, a well-known Chicago musician, author and motivational speaker on nutrition told the Journal,
“The new unified Alliances and many new raw milk alliances that are beginning to form around the world are voicing a universal outcry of citizens that are saying, “We, as human beings on this planet earth, demand the freedom and basic right to choose what kind of food we purchase and eat for ourselves and our families. We will not compromise our lives and health by eating the substandard food produced by a broken profit-driven, government-corporate controlled food system whose only concern is making sure their pockets are lined with money.”
Kurtis Staven, an Alliance coordinator and dairy farmer in British Columbia told the Journal of the dairy farmers concerns there:
“At this point in history, when more people are becoming aware of the foods they eat and the consequences of those actions, there appears to be a political backlash as the guise of food safety is revealed as being geared toward supporting the major agri-business players. We can no longer sit idle and watch our inherent rights be cast aside in favor of corporate profits.”
According to one Alliance member interviewed, who did not want his name disclosed, said: “People are getting fed up with the government/corporate partnerships in their kitchens and dictating what healthy is and feeding so much nutritional, health and food safety misinformation and disinformation to the general public.” The inside environmental health regulatory specialist says “It is no longer a debate of the health benefits of clean natural milk; that has been settled for a long time. All these people seem to be saying is they want the freedom to eat and farm like grandma and grandpa did without guilt or fear of government intrusion. Now it is a battle over civil rights and basic freedoms .”
The first co-sponsored event of the Alliances, along with other groups, will be in Ontario at the court judgments and rally for Michael Schmidt on January 21. Anyone can attend and for more information and to RSVP go to the event posting.
Michael Schmidt, also had this to say concerning the groups and alliances that are forming:
This is the chance to return to our fundamental values. This is a battle of individuals uniting to preserve what our children and grand children expect us to do. We battle not for us, we carry the burden of responsibility for the future, we carry the future of our children.
Farmers and consumers can freely join the U.S. Alliance for Raw Milk and Canadian Alliances for Raw Milk and several state/provincial ARMs at their internet locations. There, connections can be made with natural farms and food, educational events and upcoming rallies and court proceedings. More information will be disseminated at meetings and events on the local levels.
TO: FARM, FOOD, HEALTH, FREEDOM CIRCUITS/ CN, US, INTNL
For more information on raw milk, go to the Raw Milk site.
Join the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund
Once again, this story is originally from the Journal of Natural Food and Healing
The story is also featured on Farm Wars blog