From the Midlife Farm Wife (from April 28, 2014):
If a cow grazes in a field and no regulator watches, does she still give milk? Photo from the Midlife Farm Wife.
“Illinois Farm Bureau recently posted on their web site their view of the current raw milk battle in Illinois and although I do appreciate their moderate transparency , I certainly do not appreciate their very wishy washy stance, but I have never been a big fan of wishy washy in any arena.
Either you support small farmers or you support Big Ag and Big Government. The article states “We support their right to choose, provided the dairy farmers that are producing this food product are subject to some oversight, and the milk is picked up at the farm in the consumer’s container.”
Interesting how IFB “supports” the consumers right to choose. Since when do Americans need any organizations support to make our own choices? And the reference to some oversight is a blatant lie. The oversight has mushroomed from one small page to several pages of rules and regulations that if passed will be extremely detrimental to small raw milk farmers and consumers alike.
And why must the milk only be picked up at the farm? Several members of the dairy work group specifically stated they would be willing to endure more testing, and inspecting to ensure a safe product, if allowed to sell at farmers markets retail settings. But they were ignored and IDPH flipped over on them taking those (still proposed) additional testing and inspecting requirements and applying them to ALL raw milk producers, even those with JUST ONE COW OR GOAT!
Jim Fraley, author of the recent article has visited our farm and drank our raw milk. He has sat across from us as we all attempted to work together on the ill-conceived Dairy Work Group Committee created, controlled and disbanded (before any real consensus was reached) by the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) in 2013.
He verbally supported the raw milk farmers and consumers who served on this committee and in fact when the group often came to a standstill where common ground seemed unobtainable, it was Jim who stood in front of both sides and pulled us towards goals we felt we all could live with. Keith and I felt like he was really hearing small raw milk farmers, and that he was well representing our concerns to the group HE worked for, The Illinois Farm Bureau.
But then when the general assembly was hearing the ill-gotten House Bill 4036 amendment #1 just last month, where Representative Burke was asking that all raw milk sales be made illegal in Illinois, Jim Fraley stopped taking our calls….”
Read more on Midlife Farm Wife.
Note: It’s been a couple weeks since this story was originally posted.
From the Midlife Farm Wife:
Raw milk in Illinois. Photo via Midlife Farm Wife
UPDATED MARCH 31, 7:50AM: “Now grab a big cup of coffee or raw milk or Pepsi or whatever YOU as an American choose to drink and settle in for some very disturbing raw milk updates. If you follow me on Facebook this post is both a recap of the events of the last 3 days as well as essential action steps needed RIGHT NOW.
When I last posted just 4 days ago I informed you of IDPH’s back handed work with the proposed rules and regulations now making their way through that department. Less than 24 hours after that post I was informed by a Springfield contact, that House Representative Daniel Burke was sponsoring HB 4036 Amendment # 1 that would make all sales of raw milk in Illinois illegal. Continue reading
From the Midlife Farm Wife:
Midlife farm wife rings bell to trigger conditioned response.
“Yesterday we had some very unusual visitors, raw milk farmers like ourselves. But because they work very hard to stay under the same radar I am always swinging from dressed like a clown grabbing as much attention as I can, I will not share their names or their location. Continue reading
A reader writes:
Photo from the Toronto Star, via Renegade Farmer blog.
Thank you for all the hard work you do on The Bovine. We read it every day.
To show our support of Michael I have been focusing on his struggles in my daily blog posts which you can see here http://midlifefarmwife.blogspot.com/2011/10/take-raw-milk-stand.html
In addition I also wrote a small piece about him in The Renegade Farmer, an e-zine I write for weekly. It is here http://www.therenegadefarmer.com/2011/10/do-you-know-michael.html
Finally, this Tuesday I will be taking part in the 24 hr fast to show solidarity for Michael and we are giving away FREE RAW MILK (one gallon per person) to anyone who comes to our farm and wants to join the fast as well.
Its not a huge amount but its a little something for this man who is giving up so much for the freedom of choice. Continue reading
Here’s an excerpt from a fascinating and significant post by midlife farm wife Donna OShaughnessy, from Chatsworth, Illinois:
“….Which brings me to our issue with the company who buys our milk, or I should say, the issue our milk company is having with us .To recap, for the last 11 years we have shipped milk to company A. They pick up the milk every other day. On the off days we have several people who buy raw milk from us directly following Illinois State law. They come to our farm with their own containers , fill them and then drink the unpasturized, non-homoginized milk in the privacy and comfort of their own homes. Renegades, all of them. Recently milk company B made an uninvited visit to our farm suggesting we sign up with them as company A was planning to stop buying milk from dairies in our area.
The catch; company B tells us we must sign a statement saying we will not sell raw milk to private customers. Even though it is legal to do so in Illinois. Even though there is not a single proven case of raw milk related foodborne illness in Illinois, even though farmers have the right to sell products from their farm as a manner of making a living. Even though the conventional milk company pays us only 1/3 the price our private customers pay us. Continue reading