Tag Archives: England

Raw milk program to air on BBC radio

From Kimberly Hartke’s blog:

by Phil Ridley, Volunteer Weston A. Price Chapter Leader, London, England

I’m excited to say that BBC’s The Food Program is covering the issue of raw milk. I’ve had the privilege of being contacted by the producer, who has been speaking to various people about raw milk, to prepare for this program, and she has received a copy of “The Untold Story of Milk” by Ron Schmid. Continue reading

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George Monbiot recants vegan advocacy

From The Guardian UK:


“This will not be an easy column to write. I am about to put down 1,200 words in support of a book that starts by attacking me and often returns to this sport. But it has persuaded me that I was wrong. More to the point, it has opened my eyes to some fascinating complexities in what seemed to be a black and white case. Continue reading


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Could pesticides be killing bees after all?

Here’s an excerpt from a story by Katherine Eban, writing for Fortune magazine titled “What a Scientist didn’t tell the New York Times about his study on Bee Deaths“:

Bee photo above from the Oregonian. See link at bottom of story.

FORTUNE — Few ecological disasters have been as confounding as the massive and devastating die-off of the world’s honeybees. The phenomenon of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) — in which disoriented honeybees die far from their hives — has kept scientists, beekeepers, and regulators desperately seeking the cause. After all, the honeybee, nature’s ultimate utility player, pollinates a third of all the food we eat and contributes an estimated $15 billion in annual agriculture revenue to the U.S. economy. Continue reading


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Britain’s raw milk business booms

Here’s a story which Ian Cumming wrote back in 2005 for the Ontario Farmer, about a year before the infamous 2006 raid on Glencolton Farms. It’s worth noting that the British model for the regulated sale of raw milk is one that a number of Canadians, including Michael Schmidt, later recommended to the Ontario government for serious study.

What is it about farming in "the old country" of Britain and Europe that makes their raw milk so much less of a dire health hazard than milk in North America? The horns? OR the traditions?

Food safety [in Britain] is strictly regulated but demand continues to be strong for farmgate milk sales. Much of the raw milk is sold to customers who pick it up directly from the farm.

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Congratulations to Michael Schmidt from Sir Julian Rose in England

This story was published in the Globe and Mail January 20th, the day before the “not guilty” verdict was handed down in Newmarket. We don’t get much news about the raw milk scene in Britain and this story provides some valuable background as to why they still have raw milk legally available there in spite of corporate pressure to pasteurize everything:

Michael Schmidt mobbed by reporters and cameramen as he emerges from Newmarket court Thursday with a "not guilty" verdict on 19 charges stemming from a 2006 raid on his raw milk farm in Durham.

“Congratulations to Michael Schmidt – the Ontario farmer who’s due in a Newmarket court today for the verdict on charges he violated the provincial Milk Act by selling unpasteurized milk – for standing up to the anti-raw-milk lobbyists.

I am very aware of what he and his supporters are up against, having founded the Association for Unpasteurised Milk Producers and Consumers in the United Kingdom back in 1989 to prevent the British government’s proposed ban of unpasteurized milk – and again in 1997. We won our battle on both occasions, maybe because of the “and Consumers” factor and much press support. Continue reading

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Is NAIS enforcement beginning? — Amish man in Wisconsin is charged with failing to register his premises

Here’s an excerpt from the story, by Kenny Fox of R-CALF USA, via Op-Ed News:

“Billings, Mont. – It appears that in the state of Wisconsin, which has mandated the first prong of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) National Animal Identification System (NAIS) through agency rule making, prosecution of individuals opposed to NAIS has begun.

On Sept. 23, 2009, an Amish gentleman named Emanuel J. Miller, Jr., was taken to Clark County Court in Neillsville, Wis., for an evidentiary hearing on complex civil forfeiture for failing to register his premises. The case immediately moved to the first stage of trial. Miller and his father, as well as their church deacon, testified as to their objections to being forced to use the NAIS premises identification number (PIN). As USDA has proudly proclaimed in many glossy brochures, premises registration is the “first step” in the NAIS, and the Wisconsin Amish have become quite aware of this.

On Oct. 21, 2009, in Polk County, Wis., R-CALF USA Members Pat and Melissa Monchilovich are going to trial for the same charges of complex civil forfeiture. Pat and his wife raise cattle in Cumberland, Wis., and have failed to register their property as a premises with the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, as Wisconsin’s Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) requires by regulation.

This is the tip of the NAIS iceberg. One could look upon Wisconsin as the sentinel case in the enforcement measures necessary to bring this nation’s citizens into compliance with NAIS. Continue reading


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English raw milk farmers down to 150, from 570 in 1997; raw milk sold at farm gates and farmers markets in England

Here’s an excerpt from a great new story on the raw milk scene in England from “The Ecologist” website, titled “Raw milk — Magic Bullet or Health Hazard“. It’s written by Laura Sevier and was first published in June 2008. From all we hear, even from mainstream sources, it seems the English are highly “risk averse”. They have one the highest levels of police surveillance of public spaces (through CCTV cameras) and draconian laws on such silly matters as making it illegal to photograph the police (as of February 2009). And yet even they still allow raw milk to be sold to the public at farmers markets. In fact even as recently as a couple of years ago it was sold to the public at the Queen’s own farm store. Is this all the result of the famed English tolerance for eccentricity, or do the Brits know something — as in that raw milk is not really much of a health risk — that seems to have escaped us over here in the former colonies?

“A typical response to it is “Isn’t that gorgeous!”’ says farmer Keith Jefferson Smith, who sells raw milk at Walthamstow Farmers’ Market in London every Saturday. ‘Others say it reminds them of their childhood. Most remark on the sweetness.’ 

Raw milk is legal in English farmers markets.

Sale of raw milk is legal at English farmers markets.

The milk he sells comes from his son’s dairy farm in Suffolk, where cows are farmed organically and biodynamically, grazing on grass for 10 months of the year. The sweetness, he explains, is because it is so fresh.

‘We milk the cows on Saturday and sell the milk on Sunday. The longer milk hangs around, the less sweet it is. Most milk you buy in shops is five days old by the time it reaches the shop, after it’s been collected, transported to dairies, pasteurised and packaged.’

Otherwise known as ‘green-top’, raw milk is the least processed milk you can buy. Long-term drinkers of this rare but much-loved substance say it is healthier, fresher and tastier than any other milk available. Others consider it a health hazard. Unlike the vast majority of the 13 billion litres of milk produced in the UK each year, raw milk has not been pasteurised (heat-treated) or homogenised (blasted at pressure through small holes to smash up the fat globules, spreading them evenly throughout the milk). While homogenisation is done for cosmetic reasons, to give the milk an even, white-all-over look, pasteurisation is done for health and safety reasons, in order to minimise the risk of food poisoning from salmonella, campylobacter and E. coli. Continue reading


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