“There are various other definitions of sacrament, I like this one because it makes me think of the gut-friendly micro-organisms that grow in milk–uniquely active indeed. This is a post I have been putting off writing and I understand why. I am not sure if I can quite capture what I want to say here, but I have to give it a shot.
Sacrament: A rite in which God (or gods) is (are) uniquely active. -Hexam’s Concise Dictionary of Religion
The fact that many cultures around the world traditionally have a sacred bond between the animal (sheep, cow, goat, yak etc) and the fresh milk that animal produces is an aspect of the importance of farm fresh raw milk that sometimes gets left behind these days. We often get caught up in reacting to all the legal nonsense the various agencies keep throwing at us.
At the moment there is this big push, through the Food Safety Modernization Act to tag all animals and put in a comprehensive tracking system, supposedly so food can quickly and easily be traced back to the source, in case of contamination. This way, the problem can be more systematically contained. In reality, it is an expensive solution looking for a problem. Simply knowing your source is the most reliable way to ensure you are putting well treated, good quality, safe food on your table, no fancy label can change that fact.
Let me say that again: any good chef–or good mother–knows, the best way to know where your food is coming from is to raise it yourself or know the person who is raising it for you. Not only that, but it is actually beneficial to exercise your own body’s intuitive systems as well as memory functions. There are some things you have to know for yourself, directly. There are certain things you shouldn’t trust to huge faceless corporations that can change their name and identity, study you to best advertise to you and do their best to make it illegal to photograph or video their operations. It is common sense to understand that the more hands involved in getting your food from the ground to your table, the more is getting skimmed off the top. This is why there’s such a huge trend in the culinary industry in which chefs source their own local produce. This trend kicked off with Alice Waters in the 60s and has been steadily growing ever since. Alice wasn’t the only one to think this up, any good chef/cook/mom who loves their family will go the extra mile to get the food they know is grown with love. This is something that is deep in all of us, no matter what our traditions….”