In April police hauled off Mark Nolt in handcuffs for being a dairy deviant. Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Court cited the Mennonite farmer for contempt after he ignored a 2007 injunction prohibiting him from selling raw milk and cheese.
The peddling of unorthodox dairy products is legal in Pennsylvania, but it requires a permit. Nolt let his license expire in a gesture of protest, telling the Cumberland County Sentinel that “the Constitution clearly spells out we have the right [to] do private business.”
The arresting officers were joined by several representatives of the state Department of Agriculture. The assembled forces swarmed onto the farm, loaded several trucks with contraband milk and cheese, and left with an inventory worth thousands of dollars. In addition to the loss of his stock, Nolt faces a $1,000 fine for each violation of Pennsylvania’s dairy regime.
On May 5, customers and neighbors rallied at the Nolt farm to support the right to bear farmer’s cheese. His supporters are mulling ways to change the law.