Food Nullification


With a unanimous vote in a town meeting, Sedgwick, Maine, has approved a "food sovereignty" ordinance. David Gumpert reports:

Kick out the jam(s)

Citing America's Declaration of Independence and the Maine Constitution, the ordinance proposed that "Sedgwick citizens possess the right to produce, process, sell, purchase, and consume local foods of their choosing." These would include raw milk and other dairy products and locally slaughtered meats, among other items.

This isn't just a declaration of preference. The proposed warrant added, "It shall be unlawful for any law or regulation adopted by the state or federal government to interfere with the rights recognized by this Ordinance." In other words, no state licensing requirements prohibiting certain farms from selling dairy products or producing their own chickens for sale to other citizens in the town.

What about potential legal liability and state or federal inspections? It's all up to the seller and buyer to negotiate. "Patrons purchasing food for home consumption may enter into private agreements with those producers or processors of local foods to waive any liability for the consumption of that food. Producers or processors of local foods shall be exempt from licensure and inspection requirements for that food as long as those agreements are in effect."

Elsewhere in Maine, similar laws were adopted in Penobscot and narrowly rejected in Brooksville.

NEXT: Churn Notice

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  1. “It shall be unlawful for any law or regulation adopted by the state or federal government to interfere with the rights recognized by this Ordinance.”

    Next up: armed raids by FDA inspectors supported by local law enforcement.

    1. Food sovereignty is terrorism!

      1. Cats and dogs living together!

      2. Its only terrorism when lefty hipster dipshits aren’t behind it.

    2. supported by local law enforcement

      State health enforcers maybe, but not so sure about the sheriff. These are very small towns (pop. 900-1300).

    3. Too late. We really are at the point where you can’t make any jokes anymore, because the Feds have made them reality.

      1. The upside is that stuff like what your link points out will make people realize the drug war has extended way beyond crack and heroin, and is now wrapping up your dinnertable choices with it.

        I’d like to think that at some point someone will finally, really, and in earnest yell “Stop!”. But on the other hand, I’m pretty sure we could be North Korea before they do.

        1. Unfortunately, a large percentage of the populace have been brainwashed to believe that goverment intervention is necessary to “protect” us from ourselves. It’s sad , but true.

    4. There is no doubt that armed raids will follow. Job security for Balko I suppose.

  2. Bullshit. Federalism is a codeword for racism.

    1. Obviously unpasteurized milk is simply a boycott of pasteurization tech, because they want black people to do it for them for free. I mean thats why I enjoy raw milk Rochefort, because nothing says slaver like French cheese.

    2. Well, sure. What, you think there’s black people in small town Maine?

      1. Federalism is a codeword for homophobia?

      2. Arent there a huge (relative to what you would expect) number of Kenyans in Maine?

        1. I would expect zero, so any is way more than that.

          1. Sudanese not Kenyan. The largest Sudanese population in the US is in Portland ME. About 2000.


        The black population in Maine is growing substantially faster than the overall population, too.


        2. Well, two growing to four is indeed a 100% population growth.

    3. They don’t want to import food from those black people in Africa, or the brown people in Latin America.

  3. locally slaughtered meats

    How can some lowly peon from Moose Pecker, Maine be expected to know how to kill a cow without detailed instructions from the federal government?

  4. Regardless of how this actually plays out – I can’t help but be excited that a pluarality of voters in a community got something like this passed.

    Its sad to know that P Brooks is right though – FDA SWAT teams all bustin’ in to farmer Jim’s milkhouse, demanding papers. Sigh.

  5. Good for them. I’m glad some more communities are standing up to big government and saying GTFO! But those who sell these foods should still be liable if they distribute tainted food to consumers.

    1. The consumers in this case would be waiving their liability. It is their choice, who are you to interfere?

      1. Re: Law Student,

        The consumers in this case would be waiving their liability.

        No, consumers will have the choice to waive liability, not that they will waive it (you can’t possibly know what someone will do.)

        1. And if they choose not to waive liability, the farmer chooses not to sell to them.

          Freedom. Not as hard as it looks.

          1. Re: R C Dean,

            And if they choose not to waive liability, the farmer chooses not to sell to them.

            Not if the farmers are white and the customers black – then you will have a lawsuit based on the CAR ’64 and an appearance in the Rachel Maddow show in your hands! You decide which one is worse!

        2. Why in Zod’s name would anyone sign a liability waiver, unless they were very familiar with the seller?

        3. I not sure that is any different than what I said. The point is they can choose to waive liability and buy the products or choose not to and not buy them.

      2. Okay, but then everyone could come up with “buy at your own risk” or “seller assumes no responsibility for customers getting sick?” Sure, they don’t want to get customers sick and losing business, but it would be even worse if they had to pay medical expenses and any lost wages for lax health & safety protocols.

        1. Everyone else could then come up with a “lets not buy from the buy-at-your-own-risk sellers”.

          See who, buyer or seller, wants to bear the risk and break this stalemate for a tidy profit first.

        2. Free markets……how do they work?

  6. Maybe the medical marijuana producers should jump on this new bandwagon.

    1. Can’t. It’s medicine, to be regulated by the FDA.

      1. Then what does the “F” stand for?

        1. Food, so this battle’s lost, too.

        2. It stands for “f*** you! We’re the government, and we can do what we want!”

  7. Fine by me, but if someone consumes raw milk and gets sick, don’t sue the farmer!

    1. What if something in the raw milk, not related to it being unpasturized, resulted in the person getting sick?

      1. That’s rarely the case, although I’m sure any lawyer can find any reason to sue.

        Either way, the fact is that Louis Pasteur has saved thousands of lives thanks to his invention in milk purification, yet the organic savages would rather live like animals. These are the kind of people that won’t use tooth paste if it was fluoride and then wondering why are they getting so many cavities.

        As a libertarian, I support the right to be stupid, in fact, if some tree hugger wants to eat granola all day while suck a cow’s teat to get his milk, fine by me! In fact, I’ll fight for his right to be a savage, but don’t ask me to approve of his actions, I only approve of his freedom.

        1. Gregory, it is very much in your own self-interest for you to support the right to be stupid.

        2. Re: Gregory Smith,

          I only approve of his freedom.

          As a libertarian, I would much rather you respect my freedom than approve of it. I surely will always respect yours, my approval (or opinion) of it being irrelevant.

          1. Why does it matter if I approve or respect your freedom when the end result is the same?

        3. Pasteurization was invented before reliable refirgerated transport. Raw milk is really not much of a risk these days for a healthy person, and it does taste different (better to my taste) and works better for cheese making and other uses. It’s not just hippie granolas who want raw milk.

        4. Pasteurization is a whole lot more important where industrialized processes (including overcrowding, inappropriate feed, no exposure to sunlight, sloppy biosecurity protocols) exist… and in the days before flash-refrigeration and bulk cooling tanks.

          Clean, grass-fed raw dairy, properly handled, carries very, very little risk for harm.

          Science is fun =). It’s not only the hippie tree huggers that love whole, farm-fresh foods.

  8. I’m concerned about this new Food Exceptionalism.

  9. These towns are obviously filled with ratbag teafuckers.

  10. But, but, but Commerce Clause. I’m sure that the intrastate food has interstate effects and some such bullshit. Oh, by the way, Roads to Somalia.

  11. Civil war!

    The war of masshole aggression?

  12. I reserve the right to produce, process, sell, purchase, and consume foods grown in distant international location using genetically engineered crops and inorganic fertilizer.

    I have a nagging feeling that if the local food people had their way they wouldn’t stop at the “right” to eat locally. They would mandate it.

    1. Yeah, the ‘eat local/food miles’ people always make me a little nervous. It’s like those certain groups who were against specific cases of eminent domain. Sure, they seemed like your friend, but in reality, they were against it because it was the wrong eminent domain. But given the chance, they’d jump all over the “democratized property rights” bandwagon in a second.

  13. Sedgwick, Maine, has approved a “food sovereignty” ordinance.

    That’s one community. Only 18,443 to go!

    *America’s Smallest Club?

    1. Re: Libertarian Optimists Club,

      “Government can make us safe.”

      Now, THAT’S optimism!

  14. And Stephen King’s head ‘sploded just a little.

    1. I’d pay to see that.

    2. Well, since Stephen King wants to pay more taxes, I propose a “The Stephen Tax Law” where any stupid millionaire who complains about wanting to pay more taxes gets hit with a 90% rate for 1 year.

      1. I’m all for people posting comments here and having blogs, but your blog whoring just makes you look silly.

        1. More so than the contents of posts?

          1. his posts.

        2. Opinions are like assholes, everybody has one.

  15. intrastate food has interstate effects

    People in California eat chicken livers….

    On the ground, motherfucker!

    1. Thank God for the Silly Putty Clause. Not to use it is racist.

  16. can you pasteurize milk with flash bangs?

  17. Really? I didn’t know you needed approval to eat food (sarcasm). Can’t wait for the gov’t to approve what kind of underwear I will be/or not be wearing.

    1. Vote for me in 2012!

  18. Freedom. Not as hard as it looks.

    You are obviously a danger to yourself and others. A team of mental health professionals and weapons disposal agents has been dispatched to your location.

    Please lie face down on the kitchen floor and await their arrival.

  19. I’m sure Jan Brewer is eagerly awaiting Sedgewick, ME’s support.

  20. *folds hands and kneels*
    Please Lord let the Kentuckians do the same for home distilled spirits.

  21. Saw this site coming into my daily stats, not exactly sure why a commenter felt compelled to mention my blog. Considering that Blacks make us like 1.5% of the Maine population, I would hardly say that constitutes rapid growth. More importantly I have been in Maine almost a full decade, am a homeowner and tax payer (self employed spouse so I pay plenty in taxes) I hardly think my site serves as proof to say the darkies are coming.

  22. Blackgirlinmaine-” I hardly think my site serves as proof to say the darkies are coming.”

    Not at all-I think the context was more along the lines of-supporters of decentralization are often accused of racism which was countered with someone pointing out that there are relatively few minorities in the Northeast, to which someone else pointed out that minority populations were growing in that part of the country and linked your site as a reference (which readers here clicked over to out of curiousity). I don’t think many here are all that worried about “darkies”.

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