From Karen Selick in the Toronto Sun:
“On Friday, Oct. 2, 20 or so investigators from various Ontario government departments, accompanied by six armed police officers, raided Glencolton Farms, the co-operative farm in Grey Bruce County where raw milk advocate Michael Schmidt manages the dairy operation as well as raising chickens, pigs, grain and other farm products.
They arrived with a truck and a search warrant authorizing them to seize and remove numerous items for a raw milk investigation.
The news spread quickly on Facebook and Twitter. Soon, 50 co-op members were at the farm, shoulder-to-shoulder, barring the exit to the invaders. Eventually, a deal was negotiated: the cops and bureaucrats would leave with nothing more than a few computers that had already been removed (which they promised to return), and the co-op owners would stand aside.
This is the third such raid that Michael Schmidt has undergone. The others occurred in 1994 and 2006. Each time, Schmidt has been convicted of one or more regulatory offences relating to raw milk. Each time, he has been fined thousands of dollars. Each time, he has refused to pay, because he says paying would constitute an acknowledgment that he has done something wrong, and he hasn’t. Continue reading
From Mike Strobel in the Toronto Sun:
Cartoon from Toronto Sun.
“TORONTO – C’mon in, ladies and gents. Get it while it’s hot. I mean hot as a stolen Chevy. Welcome to Mikey’s Endangered Species Diner.
Our specialty? Politically incorrect cuisine and illegal edibles. Choose from our mouth-watering and rapidly expanding a la carte of wild, ill-gotten, even immoral dishes. Our meals are fresh from the boats, safari wagons and camps of the world’s finest poachers — or your local rebel farmer or grocer.
Moi, Masai Mikey, your host, brings a lifetime of culinary cognition to your table. I have supped on roast rat in the Amazon, consumed crocodile kebob in Kenya and scarfed down just about everything else that runs, crawls, trots, slithers, swims, hops or flutters on God’s green earth….” Continue reading
From Terry Davidson, in the Toronto Sun:
Dairy farmer Michael Schmidt has been convicted by an appeal court of selling unpasteurized milk to the general public after being exonerated last year. (Toronto Sun files)
“A controversial and defiant dairy farmer north of Toronto has been convicted on multiple counts of selling raw milk to his customers.
Michael Schmidt, who has been fighting a battle to deal in unpasteurized milk at his Grey County farm ever since it was raided by government officials in 2006, was convicted on 15 of 19 charges after the Ontario Court of Justice reversed a lower court decision to acquit him last year.
Shortly after Schmidt’s acquittal, the province and the Grey Bruce health unit appealed the decision.
Justice Peter Tetley on Wednesday rejected Schmidt’s argument that selling raw milk to customers who are aware of any health risks was his legal right. Continue reading
The Toronto Sun reports on a poll from April of 2010:
“…Polling also shows the McGuinty government was at odds with the public in its pursuit of raw milk activist Michael Schmidt.
Seven in 10 Ontarians say people should be allowed to buy it legally despite the fact most of them think it may pose a health threat.
Almost three in 10 Ontarians say they have tried the product, and those most interested in drinking it tend to be middle-aged rural men. Continue reading
Since yesterday’s news conference at Queen’s Park, the Toronto Sun has posted a story and video on their website. Excerpt:
Click on image to go to Toronto Sun website to watch video
“A Durham farmer who is heading a raw milk revolution says he has received two death threats since his acquittal last month for breaching 19 provincial laws. Continue reading
These days, Connie seems to be the one lone journalist left touting the DFO (Marketing Board) line. Here are some excerpts from her story and from the seventy-some comments that follow it:
Raw milk farmer Michael Schmidt shows writer David E. Gumpert the inside of his dairy barn.
“….. So it always amazes me to hear people extolling the benefits of raw milk — the taste, the extra nutrients, the purity, blah-blah-blah.
And even though everyone from Health Canada to your local health unit will tell you that’s not the case, Ontarians are beginning to buy the argument. Several online media polls show many believe in the right to choose what they eat, safe or not. Continue reading
Ontario raw milk dairyman Michael Schmidt is back in the news today with a commentary by Bill Mitchell, published today in the Toronto Sun, titled “Seeing through the raw milk fairy tale”. Here are a couple of excerpts:
Sept 11, 2008, outside the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Newmarket, Raw milk farmer Michael Schmidt answers questions from Toronto Sun reporter Brett Carlson. And that's Randy Riesling of Star Media behind the camera. Sun reporter Brett Carlson was later called to the stand by the prosecution lawyer to testify about what Michael Schmidt had told him in interviews.
“Once upon a time, farmer Michael Schmidt could pontificate about raw milk and freedom of choice, and then buy a newspaper or turn on TV to hear his words repeated with little or no challenge.
The media tide seems to have turned in favour of public safety and facts as the lengthy legal process nears its end.
Schmidt was once a licensed and inspected Ontario dairy farmer who “quit” dairy farming to, instead, sell raw milk illegally in the early ’90s. In 1994 he pleaded guilty and was fined $3,500 and given a two-year probation order as a result of charges laid by two provincial ministries enforcing public health and safety laws. Continue reading