Dairy Farmers Marketing Board (DFO) urges appeal of raw milk verdict to provincial attorney general, health and agriculture ministries, says farm paper

It’s perhaps not surprising that the Dairy Farmers of Ontario, formerly the Ontario Milk Marketing Board, are less than enthusiastic about the recent court decision in favour of the legality of cowshares. Looks like they’re having their people (lobbyists) talk to the government’s people to see what can be done. This is what little we really know about the situation, thanks to the Manitoba Cooperator, of all places:

Breaking raw milk news from a farming newspaper website in another province.

“Citing “increased public health risks,” the Dairy Farmers of Ontario is publicly urging the province to appeal a local justice’s decision allowing distribution of raw, unpastuerized milk through “cow shares.”

“At this point, DFO expects the Ontario government will appeal the decision to a higher court, defend the legislation and take all steps necessary to protect the public by ensuring the safety of the food supply,” the provincial dairy farmers’ group said in a release Friday.

Ontario dairy farmer Michael Schmidt, who manages a “cow share” program for fans of raw, unpasteurized milk from his cattle at Durham, Ont., was acquitted Thursday by a justice of the peace at Newmarket, Ont., of 19 charges that alleged the raw product was being sold.

Paul Kowarsky ruled that Schmidt’s scheme is not a violation of Ontario’s public health rules or milk marketing regulations, as there is no selling or marketing for the product. The cow-share program distributes the milk to members of a co-operative who own shares of the cow….”

“…..DFO said it had expressed concern over Kowarsky’s decision to the provincial attorney general and health and agriculture ministries.”

Get the whole story from the Manitoba Cooperator

2 Comments

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2 responses to “Dairy Farmers Marketing Board (DFO) urges appeal of raw milk verdict to provincial attorney general, health and agriculture ministries, says farm paper

  1. thebovine

    Here’s what they say in a blog on The Western Standard, another farm “paper”, following an unattributed quote from Megan Ogilvie’s Toronto Star story:

    “I’ll leave the culinary and scientific points about raw milk to others. This is an important, though highly qualified victory for consumer choice. The ruling simply confirmed the existing law, just broadening its interpretation a little wider than that of the Ontario bureaucrats who have been persecuting Michael Schmidt. The Durham farmer’s argument was that he was sharing milk with the cows’ other owners – roughly 200 people – rather than selling it. The Depression-era law does allow farmers to drink their own raw milk, just not sell it. Having confirmed this technical expansion of the law, which can still be appealed, the law itself may quickly become a dead letter. The small minority that strongly wants raw milk won’t mind engaging in a few legal sidesteps, even buying partial ownership of a cow. ”

    from: http://westernstandard.blogs.com/shotgun/2010/01/raw-freedom.html

  2. Bernie Bailey

    I think what they are saying is that the little county is done playing now so lets send in the big guns. Five minutes after the verdict was announced I would bet that a team of lawyers went in to action with one goal in mind ,destroy the natural milk movement at any cost.Again they will peruse the so called health issue but start to add new avenues to litigate with it. Please remember that after Michael Schmidt has worked all day on the farm and spoke to you about his protest against the governments that strangle your freedom of choice he then sits down to figure out how to defend him self while the government puts employees and out side law firms working on this as a career.
    been there , through this and will be there when and if you need me Mike

    Bernie

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