Reason.tv: Q&A with Farmageddon's director Kristin Canty

Guns drawn, a SWAT team kicks in the door of a private business. Are the cops there for drug dealers? Mafia mobsters? Terrorists?

No, the long arm of the law is out for the real dangerous contraband: raw milk and grass-fed chickens.

Nick Gillespie sits down with Kristin Canty, director of Farmageddon: The Unseen War on American Farms, a new documentary about small farms and co-ops that have been raided by the Food & Drug Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and state-level agencies and have had their products seized and destroyed. One particularly gruesome case involved a flock of sheep being killed because of the non-existent threat of the sheep acquiring Mad Cow Disease.

Farmageddon does more than document government overreach; the movie also takes issue with FDA claims that raw milk and other products popular with foodies are unsafe and filled with dangerous bacteria. In a country where more and more folks are embracing small-scale and organic agriculture, the government is on a collision course with a growing subculture.

Canty says this is only film she intends to make. She aspires to open a farm-to-table restaurant in Massachusetts, a venture that will be made all the more difficult by onerous and misguided regulations.

Shot by Meredith Bragg and Josh Swain.  Edited by Anthony L. Fisher.

Approximately 5.28 minutes.

Go to http://reason.tv for downloadable iPod, HD and audio versions of this and all our videos.

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Asked what Canty hopes to accomplish with her documentary:

    "I guess that, number one, that the regulators maybe see that their well-intentioned laws to keep us safe are having are having unintended consequences by really hurting our small farmers."

    Yeah, regulators are generally known for their ability to see past the letter of the law and to take the corrective action of reducing their own power.

  • Canty Canty see||

    The intent of the law is to protect the MegaFarms from the small farmers.

  • ||

    Chicken Balls!

  • SIV||

    grass-fed chickens ?

    They eat more than just grass.

  • ||

    Cow shit. They eat cow shit. Fact is, eggs are simply rooster cum and cow shit.

  • MrGuy||

    Is that why it's so delicious?

  • ||

    Wrong. Eggs are nothing gross, they are just chicken periods.

  • Warty||

    So that's why they're so much better raw.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Which came first, the chicken or his wife?

  • ||

    you mean the chicken or the rooster. while chicken in the generic sense can apply to either gender the default gender of the word "chicken" (and most fowl) is female.

  • SWAT Team||

    One particularly gruesome case involved a flock of sheep being killed because of the non-existent threat of the sheep acquiring Mad Cow Disease.

    They're coming right at us!

    < opens fire >

  • PermaLurker||

    Sheep are especially good at furtive gestures.

  • ||

    And being liberal. Sheep are especially good at being liberals.

  • Jan Steinman||

    "Sheep are especially good at being liberals."

    Uhm, don't you have that exactly backwards?

  • Spur||

    Great piece - thanks

  • Federal Dog||

    "She aspires to open a farm-to-table restaurant in Massachusetts, a venture that will be made all the more difficult by onerous and misguided regulations."

    Preposterous. That's like aspiring to open an alternative newspaper in Moscow during the Soviet Union. Massachusetts is an overt police state.

  • Jan Steinman||

    Perhaps not. The First Amendment gives Americans "Freedom of Association" to do anything collectively that they are free to do individually.

    I would suggest that anyone attempting such a thing to do it as a co-op. Require that everyone eating there be an "investor" who "owns" a portion of the restaurant. You could sell shares right at the door. They cannot stop a group of investors from eating anything that is legal for an individual to eat.

    This is the strategy of the burgeoning "herd share" movement, which has been court-tested in Ontario, at least.

  • hlasny||

    You wrote; „One particularly gruesome case involved a flock of sheep being killed because of the non-existent threat of the sheep acquiring Mad Cow Disease...“.

    However, mad cow disease (BSE) can be a naturally occurring disease,and not an infectious disease,so beef is (was)safe in the all world. WHY?
    The BSE was tested in dairy cows, see"nutritonal experiment" performed in England; published in Veterinary Record (MOORBY et al., 2000) and in Journal of Dairy Science (MOORBY et al., 2000; DEWHURST et al., 2000). Long-term dietary crude protein surpluss, significantly higher than the norm (NRC, 2001; if about daily 30 kg of milk production was recorded and six of the 47 animals (13 percent !!!) developed clinical signs of BSE...
    In addition about the BSE/ vCJD diseases; this was never justified scientifically! It was pure, math-model-driven science fiction. See more about ; BSE/ vCJD mathematical- models, see my large three comments in Telegraph.co.uk ( February 8th 2010; Does vCJD still pose a major public health threat?).
    According to my opinion; what is the common denominator of the neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease?This was ten years ago (end of March 2001), when I published an alternative theory ( BSE ammonia- magnesium theory), where the main role of NMDA receptors was described. According to this theory, the cause of BSE is an excess of protein and the magnesium deficiency, in the feed rations of ruminants. Such conditions were developed in the mid of 1980s , especially in Great Britain... In addition, on the web of U.S. NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH, Aging(December 2010)there was described the effect of drugs,in Alzheimer's disease in humans,on the principle of control hyperfunction of NMDA receptors,which is consistent with my BSE alternative theory of BSE, published 10 years ago. See more about the Nameda; A medication known as Namenda® (memantine), an N-methyl D-aspartate (NMDA) antagonist, is prescribed to treat moderate to severe Alzheimer’s disease...
    However, less well-known circumstances can be show (as a detective story); in documenting the first case of disease transmission, by blood transfusion. For more informations see my large comments in The Western Star (January 6th 2011; Woman's death in northern Italy is nation's 2nd fatal case of mad cow disease)
    See also other relationships according to my web www.bse-expert.cz and recent presentation at 29th World Veterinary Congress in Vancouver;Neurodegenerative Diseases and Schizophrenia as a Hyper or Hypofunction of the NMDA Receptors(www.bse-expert.cz/pdf/Veter_kongres.pdf).

  • ||

    Overlooked is the scandal of why does the FDA, USDA and their state and local counterparts have a need for SWAT teams? What posible reason would they need them?

    Another point is that the USDA & the FDA have standards for permissible filth in food so what exactly is their point in these raids? That these farmers are slightly filthier? As far as I know, every food borne outbreak has arisen from inspectd sources so what exactly are they protecting us from?

  • ||

    [ What posible reason would they need them?]

    For the occasional raid on a dairy selling unpasteurized milk?

  • Jan Steinman||

    "... what exactly are they protecting us from?"

    Ha ha! Another one that is exactly backwards!

    They are protecting THEMSELVES from US!

  • ||

    I grew up cosuming these products,as did all my friends and neighbors,none of us ever got sick on them.I'm in my 70s and still milk a cow,eat eggs from my chickens,plant my garden in their manure.Still healthy.

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    Your sights into the problem is so good and deep. It is so meaningful and positive!

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