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News for May 15, 2010

Groups urge veto of Wisconsin raw milk bill

Cheesemakers, doctors, veterinarians and other opponents of legalizing raw milk sales in Wisconsin urged Gov. Jim Doyle on Friday to veto the bill, citing safety risks.

Doyle last month indicated he was likely to sign it into law, but this week began to back off those statements after being barraged with opposition to the plan. Doyle now says he needs more time to study the issue and he hasn't decided what to do.

He has until Thursday to act on it or allow it to become law without his signature.

READ MORE (Associated Press)]

FDA Issues Warning Letter To Raw Milk Dairy Farmer

About 5 in the morning on April 20, three cars carrying four men and a woman drove the long, narrow lane into Daniel Allgyer’s farm, ignoring two “No Trespassing” signs.

Allgyer was in his barn as the group entered his property. He remained there, concealed by darkness, while they looked around, but emerged to confront them as they approached his house to knock on the door.

He “hollered” — his word — at them.

Deborah Haney and Joshua Schafer, agents from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration were there, along with two armed federal marshals and a Pennsylvania State trooper from the .800Lancaster barracks. They served Allgyer with a federal search warrant and peppered him with questions. He answered a few — his name, how many cows he had — then refused to answer any more. And so they searched his barn and more; everything but the house.

READ MORE (Lancaster Farming)]

Pasteurized Milk, Part III: The War on Raw Milk Rages

Part I covered the deadliness of pasteurization and Part II covered the liveliness of raw milk. Part III will cover a bit about the war on raw milk consumption. Until recently, the FDA and the USDA sent their goons in to directly confiscate raw milk and arrest small dairy farmers. Irate public responses forced them to back up, but only to change their tactics.

Now they use local proxies to do their dirty work obliquely. They pressure state departments of agriculture and influence state politicians to create legislation making consumer purchases of raw milk more difficult, to indirectly force small dairies out of business.

READ MORE (Natural News)]

Doyle starting to back off on legalizing raw milk

Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle is starting to hedge on whether he'll sign a bill into law to legalize the sale of unpasteurized, raw milk.

Doyle said on April 23 that he assumed he would sign the bill passed by the Legislature into law. He said then he thought it struck a proper balance between the concerns of the dairy industry worried about an outbreak of diseases and supporters who say raw milk tastes better and has nutritional benefits.

READ MORE (WKBT)]

More people turning to raw, unpasteurized milk from farmers

As more and more consumers turn to organic foods for their health, one trend that seems to be growing is the sale of raw, unpasteurized milk.

Bob Stryk, a lifelong dairy farmer, began selling raw milk in response to a growing movement, and said he doesn't know how his business would survive without it.

READ MORE (KVUE)]

USDA beefs up school meat safety program

Come fall, the ground beef used in school lunches will be as safe as ground beef sold to the nation's fast food chains — a major improvement, critics say.

The U.S. Agriculture Department announced Friday that it will require all ground beef purchased for the National School Lunch Program to adhere to new safety standards after July 1. The program supplies ground beef, chicken and other food for more than 31 million schoolchildren.

The rules bring school lunches "right in line with contemporary standards," says Dave Theno, a food safety consultant who developed a rigorous safety program for the Jack in the Box chain before retiring in 2008. "In fact, I'd make the case that the school lunch standards will now be above some of our major retail grocery chains. Not all, but some. They'll be up there with the best."

READ MORE (USA Today)]

USDA toughens guidelines for ground beef purchases

Companies that sell ground beef used in federal food and nutrition programs, including school lunches, will need to meet tougher food safety guidelines beginning this summer, the U.S. Agriculture Department said on Friday.

USDA said ground beef purchased by the USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service will now be subjected to more frequent testing and it will ban the use of certain trimmings.

READ MORE (Reuters)]

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