From Terrence McCoy in the Washington Post:
“It’s 6:30 p.m. in eastern Arizona, and an energetic doctor who has gained notice due to his disdain for vaccinations has just gotten home. It’s been a busy day. He’s already spoken to USA Today. He just did a segment on CNN. And he’s closely monitored his Facebook page, which has collected 4,000 “likes” in the span of 48 hours. But Jack Wolfson always has time to discuss vaccinations — his hatred of them and his abhorrence of the parents who defend them.
“Don’t be mad at me for speaking the truth about vaccines,” Wolfson said in a telephone interview with The Washington Post. “Be mad at yourself, because you’re, frankly, a bad mother. You didn’t ask once about those vaccines. You didn’t ask about the chemicals in them. You didn’t ask about all the harmful things in those vaccines…. People need to learn the facts.” Continue reading
Ontario farmer and raw milk advocate, Michael Schmidt, with one of his supporters, following a court case in 2011.
We don’t see a lot of this out there, but here’s an apparently independent blogger, who doesn’t appear to be a cowshare member, or all that closely connected or impacted by the case, expressing concern for the fundamental issues at stake in the Michael Schmidt raw milk saga, which so far has mostly been about how Michael has been prosecuted in the absence of any damage, and how his case has gotten an inordinate amount of regulatory attention, given what else is happening in the world these days. From Sofa King Next Level:
“Michael Schmidt is an Ontario farmer who was targeted in 2006 by the Province of Ontario (through the Grey-Bruce Health Unit and the Ministry of Natural Resources) for making unpasteurized milk available to his small buying group of customers who owned shares in his milking herd. We are talking less than 150 customers over a number of years, and less than 30 cows. When the judgement for this case came down in 2010, Michael Schmidt was found not guilty and acquitted of all charges. This should have been the end of the story. Continue reading
The Ontario Agricultural College at the University of Guelph will be hosting a one-day symposium on science and policy questions around raw milk on Tuesday April 22, 2014. Academics, industry and government representatives are expected to attend.
According to the event web page: “The goal of the conference will be to engage in discussions on the need for a structured and transparent process, to ensure that scientific research and knowledge are used to enable effective policy decisions. We are engaging a wide spectrum of global experts, who will use current policies relating to raw and pasteurized milk as the exploratory case study.”
Among the nine presenters will be Durham area farmer and raw milk advocate Michael Schmidt. Here’s Michael’s bio from the presenter page: Continue reading
“Nothing about the CFIA would surprise me”, said Karen Selick, in a comment on a recent post on The Bovine. Well, here’s another case in point. Why should different, and higher, standards apply for meats being exported to Japan, than for meats sold to Canadians? Do Canadians not matter? Are Japanese export customers more important than Canadians? Is that what the CFIA was thinking? For those who might have wondered, when they read the story in the media a few months ago about the massive recall of meat from XL Foods in Brooks, Alberta, how such a thing could happen in a plant where 40 some CFIA inspectors are on the job, the memo described in the story below may be the answer. However, the report on this scandalous memo is not exactly as “out there” as the original recall story. Merely a few column inches on page 3 of today’s paper.
From the Toronto Star newspaper:
“Federal beef inspectors were told to ignore contamination on carcasses being processed for sale to Canadians at the XL Foods plant.
A memo from a Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) meat hygiene supervisor obtained by CTV News instructed CFIA inspectors to closely examine carcasses being processed for shipment to Japan, but to ignore visible contamination on meat for Canadians.
“Our number 1 priority is to ensure this standard is met with Japan eligible carcasses,” said the memo. Continue reading
Remember the CFIA, that official Canadian Food Inspection agency, that was so concerned about wiping out a flock of heritage Shropshire sheep a few weeks back? Well maybe that wasn’t such an isolated incident. What can we make of this latest development on the food safety front? Is this a real problem that’s being covered up? To protect what, short term business prospects of continuing to sell more salmon in the supermarkets? And for that, they’re willing to scupper the international credentials of a university science lab? Is this is a government agenda, rogue “regulators”, or what? Are we still living in Canada?
From Mark Hume, in the Globe and Mail:
“A lab that revealed the first evidence of an infectious virus in British Columbia salmon should be stripped of its international credentials, according to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
In a letter to the World Organization for Animal Health, the CFIA urges the international agency to accept the findings of an independent audit that recommends “suspension of the reference laboratory status,” of the facility.
The lab is run by Frederick Kibenge at the Atlantic Veterinary College-University of Prince Edward Island. Continue reading
From GMOFREEZONE on Youtube:
Steve and Marylou are Ontario Farmers and members of the CowShare Canada Program..and are supported by their CowShare members, Michael Schmidt and Bill Squire, spokesman for the Chiefs of the Mohawk Nation in attendance. Alliances between farmers groups and concerned citizen’s groups are growing out of the need for all people to stand together for our collective ‘RIGHT TO CHOOSE’ food and other natural traditions.
From Margo McIntosh, on the Canadian Consumer Raw Milk Advocacy blog:
Ontario herdshare members and supporters on hand for a meeting with health officials.
‘Today about 30 people were at a farm just north of Clinton, Ontario in the cold and rain to show support for their cow share farmer. Raw milk consumers are realizing the importance of speaking up and supporting their farmers. Farmers who board, care for and milk cows for people deserve our support when our outdated laws are used to try to stop them. Continue reading
As if dealing with raw milk farmers wasn’t keeping public health officials busy enough, here’s something else people are doing to themselves, as if to drive the nanny state apoplexic. From Butch News Youtube channel, via Facebook:
Can you believe this? People seem to be doing whatever they like with their bodies with no regard for the feelings and interests of the State. Clearly public health has a role here to ensure people’s safety.
“Public health authorities across Canada are struggling to address the growing popularity of body modifications such as splitting one’s tongue like a snake’s and surgically altering ears to make them elf-like and pointy, fearing the spread of infection in an unregulated industry. Continue reading
Below we have an excerpt from a piece written recently by National Public Radio’s ombudsman, in response to listener feedback. Listeners wondered why reporters and commentators on a publicly funded radio network would express opinions that cast doubt the wisdom of government policy and seemed to ignore what they viewed as established consensus among the public health community. An interesting question indeed:
“When it comes to raw milk, even a simple story can turn sour on some listeners. There’s an ongoing controversy over raw milk’s safety. Proponents hail its taste and nutrients. Adversaries worry about deadly food-borne diseases. Government regulators are caught in between, accused of being too lax, too stiff or too in bed with Big Dairy. Continue reading
From a document on the Grey Bruce Health Unit website:
“It is impossible to produce sterile milk directly from an animal source. Sources of contamination include commensal or pathogenic flora of the udder or teat canal, the animal’s skin, fecal soiling of the udder, contaminated milking equipment, water used to clean the milking equipment, and milk storage containers. In addition, commensal or pathogenic organisms from milkers, insects, rodents, birds, and other animals may enter milk.
The consumption of unpasteurized or raw milk has always been dangerous and the same holds true today. Pasteurization of milk kills most potential pathogenic organisms but does not sterilize the milk. Continue reading