“When agent Jim Roettger of the Minnesota Dept. of Agriculture was caught on video confiscating raw milk last December in suburban Minneapolis, he could be heard at one point telling a complaining consumer to bug out. “I don’t have to respond to your questions. You’re not part of this investigation.” In other words, we may be taking your milk, but it’s none of your business if we bring the wrath of the law down on your farmer supplier.
I get the same feeling reading through the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s response to the FTCLDF federal suit challenging the agency’s prohibition on interstate sale and distribution of raw milk. I’ve gone through the FDA’s response several times during my travels since it came out a couple weeks back, trying to make sense of it beyond its legalese—after all, the FDA rarely reveals much about its real strategy, except when forced to in legal confrontations like this one….”
“….Also interesting is that the FDA makes sure there are no ambiguities in its contention. “Not only do direct shipments across state lines to consumers constitute interstate commerce, but…a person who purchases unpasteurized milk in one state with the intent to take it to another state (either for personal use [emphasis added]or to distribute to others) is engaging in interstate commerce.”
But, benign dictator that it is, it has has chosen not to enforce that interpretation of the law, the FDA then states. Of course, the agency doesn’t put it that way, suggesting instead that its approach is to “make efficient use of agency resources” by targeting farmers who distribute raw milk across state lines. It refers to “enforcement discretion” in its decision not to target consumers. “Producers and distributors of raw milk in interstate commerce…have been the object of the agency’s enforcement action,” it states, and cites several cases in which it has either sought prosecution or sent warning letters to dairies….”