Monthly Archives: October 2015

York Region Public Health meeting with Elisa and farm-share members Oct. 22

Thursday October 22, 2015 10:30 am
York Region Public Health
Meeting with Vito Chiefari

Summary: The hour long meeting with Vito was informative and diplomatic but reached an expected impasse, quickly. Elisa and Farm Share owners requested the meeting to seek out the exact individuals who gave direct orders for inspectors and police to raid the regular raw milk drop on September 29, 2015. Glencolton Farms had been operating peacefully since the last raid on November 21, 2006.

There were no clear messages from this meeting other than Farm Share owners face potential threats every day. Continue reading


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“Theft of Cameras” charge questioned

From Collective Evolution:

“Deciding what we want is sometimes difficult. There are usually  so many options — do I go with Ford, Toyota, or Hyundai? Wheat-free, gluten free, or grain free? Yoga, running, or pilates? We have the ability to choose what brand, style, or taste we want in nearly every area of our lives, but when it comes to dairy in Canada, pasteurized milk is the only legal option. Why is this the case? Continue reading


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Connecting the dots: food and health

Rough cut excerpt from a documentary on Food, Energy and Health, tentatively titled “The Wave of Change”:

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Michael Schmidt and hidden cameras case in court Mon. Oct. 26, Walkerton

Folks are invited to come to the Walkerton Court House On Monday October 26 at 9:30 am to show their support. The address is 207 Cayley Street, Walkerton.

In other news, this Saturday Oct. 24th, farm-share members will be coming together at the farm to help harvest the apples.

More on the charges to be addressed in court Oct. 26th

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York Region Public Health will meet to discuss raw milk situation with Elisa and farmshare group at 10:30 am today

Michael Schmidt posted this brief note last night, along with a blurred out screenshot of the email it refers to:

Glencolton farm share members with their milk, a few weeks ago in Thornhill.

“Vito Chiefari has agreed to the meeting with Elisa and the group as requested Thursday, October 22, 2015 at 10:30am. We’ll report back as soon as we can! As per Vito’s confidentiality requirement we cannot show the text of his email.”

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Ontario Raw Milk Farmer Michael Schmidt Released After Night in Jail

From Kimberly Hartke at the Weston A. Price Foundation:

Michael, Elisa and the kids en route to the police station last Monday night (photo via Michael Schmidt on Facebook).

Durham, Ontario—October 20, 2015 West Grey Police detained raw milk farmer Michael Schmidt on October 19, 2015 and held him overnight when he reported for booking on theft charges.

The Canadian government is pressing criminal theft charges against the Ontario farmer for allegedly removing surveillance cameras spying on visitors and other activity at his farm. Schmidt claims neighbors and friends removed the cameras in August. Several weeks after Schmidt called police to report discovery of the devices and ask who they belonged to he was charged with theft of the devices for refusing to turn them over to the police. Continue reading


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Michael Schmidt Detained by Police

Update Tuesday Oct 20, 8:45 pm — Bayshore Broadcasting report

Update Tuesday Oct. 20, 8:10 am: Michael Schmidt was released by police this morning after police took his fingerprints by force. So the bail hearing earlier planned for today is no longer happening because Michael has already been released from police custody. Michael posted the following this morning on FB:

“Michael released in the early morning hours after three officers forced him to be fingerprinted and photographed.
Arrested without charged.
released without being charged
This prevents a public bail hearing today, which might have been too much for bureaucrats.

No Bail Hearing today.

Next court hearing October 26. 2015 in Walkerton at 9.30 am”

Editor’s note: We thought that Michael had been charged with theft under $5,000 for not turning over the cameras to the police when they asked. However in his latest post on FB, Michael seems to be saying he was arrested without being charged? We’re awaiting clarification. 

According to a report posted Monday Oct. 19th, at about 10 pm by Liz Reitzig:

Supporters marching with Michael Schmidt to the police station earlier tonight.

Michael Schmidt was detained this evening (October 19, 2015) by the West Grey Police. He has bail hearing tomorrow, October 20, 2015 at the Walkerton Court House at 1:30pm. He is asking for supporters to be there in peaceful solidarity…”

As predicted, this would seem to have been timed to be eclipsed by Canada’s federal election coverage, which will likely dominate the news for the next day or so.

Gwen Jacobs commented, also on FB: “Preliminary news from the front lines indicates they are detaining Michael because he refused to be fingerprinted.”

Link to Support Michael Schmidt Facebook page for latest updates.

Event listing for tonight’s march to the Police Station (from FB):

“Michael Schmidt has been charged with theft and mischief and has been summoned to appear for the purposes of the Identification of Criminals Act at 7:00 pm on Monday October 19, 2015. He will be fingerprinted and his photograph taken. A warrant for Michael’s arrest may be issued immediately to have him detained as is set under his current bail conditions regarding the sheep trial.

Please plan to meet us Monday October 19, 2015 at 6:30 pm sharp! Park at the West Grey Public Library at 240 Garafraxa Street, N (which is Hwy 6) in Durham. It’s a 2 minute walk from there to the police station at 153 George Street. We will be walking together, with Michael, in protest against authorities who go beyond guidelines when it comes to your privacy.

Google Map link to location:

Vote during the day and join us in the evening to make tomorrow dedicated to democracy! We need you there to peacefully express your disapproval of this action.

We need to show the media, police and authorities that:

* there is a great deal of support behind Michael
* we will not tolerate surveillance
* these charges are another form of unreasonable harassment

Dress warmly! The police station is not open at this time and we’ll not be able to go inside. Bring your family! Bring your friends! You can make signs that act as your voice or simply gather with us silently. Showing up to be present is most critical. This is an important action that gives farm owners and the public a choice opportunity to demonstrate that protecting one’s privacy is a right that we are not willing to ignore.


Two surveillance cameras were found on trees in the ditches on either side of Glencolton Farm in late July. Michael reported these cameras to be found and the police demanded that they be handed in. It was clearly outlined to the police and to the municipal council that these cameras are of public concern and they would not be returned until the public was made aware of who the cameras belonged to, and what their purpose was. The police threatened to charge Michael with theft… and now they have done so.

Read the Sun Times (Owen Sound) article:


Federal government guidelines for the use of video surveillance under the Privacy Act

We believe that the guidelines (see quoted sections below) have not been properly followed.

“The public should have a right to know about the video surveillance system that has been adopted.

Police forces and public authorities should recognize that individuals will want information about video surveillance systems. They may seek to know, for example, who has authorized the recording, whether and why their images have been recorded, what the images are used for, who has access to them, and how long they are retained. Police forces and public authorities should be prepared to provide this information

Public consultation should precede any decision to introduce video surveillance.

Public consultation should be conducted with relevant stakeholders, including representatives of communities that will be affected. “Community” should be understood broadly; it should be recognized that a particular geographic area may have several distinct communities, and one community should not be presumed to speak for the others.

The public should be advised that they will be under surveillance.

The public should be informed with clearly written signs at the perimeter of surveillance areas, which advise that the area is or may be under surveillance, and indicate who is responsible for the surveillance, including who is responsible for compliance with privacy principles, and who can be contacted to answer questions or provide information about the system.””


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CTV Barrie on “Cameragate” charges

Watch the CTV news clip here.

Click image above to go to CTV Barrie site to watch news clip.

Good coverage of recent developments including the raid on the farm the friday before last, right up to the news that Michael will be charged for stealing the cameras that he reported to police. Story includes revelation that the purpose of the cameras WAS surveillance of Glencolton Farms.

Additional to the video:

Word is that Michael is due to report to local police Monday, Oct. 19th, to be fingerprinted, charged, and possibly put in jail due to this charge being a violation of his prior bail conditions (on the sheep-napping case).

But that’s the same day as the federal election. Concern is that if Michael is jailed, that news will be eclipsed by election coverage, and Michael will have been jailed without the public having noticed. Was this coincidence? Or did someone plan it that way?

Some worry that this phalanx of cases — milk, sheep, cameras — is evidence of a personal vendetta against Michael. Could it be there’s someone up there among the string pullers who doesn’t like Michael challenging the corporate hegemony over food, who doesn’t like the idea that there might be someone out there standing up against “the powers that be” and seemingly getting away with it.

Here’s that link to the CTV clip again, so you can watch it yourself.

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Michael Schmidt is charged with theft over removal of MNR roadside cameras

From the Owen Sound Sun Times:

Farmer Michael Schmidt shares a toast with farm share members at last Tuesday’s farm products distribution in Thornhill while a Toronto Sun photographer immortalizes the moment. Speculation is that authorities don’t like Mr. Schmidt’s work for food freedom, but have taken to using indirect measures such as the theft charge described in this story to try to shut him down.

“Durham-area raw milk farmer Michael Schmidt is facing theft and mischief charges in connection with cameras that were found along the road near his farm.

Schmidt, 61, has been charged with theft under $5,000 and mischief in relation to two cameras belonging to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry that had been placed along Conc. 2 near his farm.

He is scheduled to appear in court in Walkerton on Oct. 26.

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Farm-share members get their milk Tuesday after samples taken last week

Glencolton farmshare members pose with their milk and farmer Michael Schmidt for Toronto Sun photographer at Oct. 6th raw milk pickup

From the Toronto Sun:

“VAUGHAN – Michael Schmidt was feeling a bit raw Tuesday, following the natural resource ministry’s raid on his farm last week in which samples of unpasteurized milk were seized.

The Glencolton Farms owner, along with some 50 supporters, staged a “milk-in” protest at the Christian Community Church on Rutherford Rd. Tuesday afternoon.

Participants blocked the entrance of a parking lot to prevent any police or MNR officers from entering as they filled coolers with bottles of pre-ordered raw milk.

However, no one from the ministry or police showed up….’

More in the Toronto Sun


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