Raw Milk Bans

Raw Milk Raid on Amish Farmer Highlights Stupid FDA Tactics

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Reason contributor Baylen Linnekin writes about a totally insane (and armed!) raid on an Amish farmer in Pennsylvania who dared provide raw milk and other dairy products to willing and knowing DC-area customers. The details of the raid are disturbing and so is the rationale against the purchase of the stuff in question:

Anyone who has ever brought home a dozen eggs from a grocer's shelves has purchased raw food. And once a consumer brings any food home, it's up to the consumer—not the government—to decide how (or if) he or she wants to cook the food. The notion that the government would ban raw chicken, beef or eggs—or deli meat, for that matter—from store shelves may seem ludicrous. Seen in this context, the current raw milk ban is no less absurd.

Even if consumers were unaware of the risk involved in consuming a raw agricultural product like raw milk or raw beef, FDA and USDA guidelines, along with many state and local health codes, typically require warnings about the potential dangers of consuming raw or undercooked foods. Where a warning will suffice, a ban is inappropriate. The FDA's extraordinary message when it comes to raw milk, though, is that the American people are too dim to read the very labels the agency requires.

Whole thing here, in the Washington Times.

Linnekin is the founder and director of Keep Food Legal, a nonprofit that is dedicated to defining and enlarging culinary freedom, the (radical!) notion that eaters and chefs should be free to use whatever ingredients they want in the act of cooking and chowing. Check out Keep Food Legal here.

Last fall, Reason.tv covered a raw-food raid that took place in Southern California. Check it out now:

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  1. The Amish hate our freedom

  2. I should go down to the dirty hippie food co-op and get some raw milk. And then I’m gonna crack some raw eggs in it and make a big ole salmonella milkshake. Fuck you, FDA.

    1. That’ll show ’em!

  3. …totally insane (and armed!) raid on an Amish farmer in Pennsylvania…

    You never know… Harrison Ford may be among them.

    1. dancing in the barn = female pron

  4. Thank you for nice web

  5. Thank you for nice web

  6. If you buy or drink raw milk, the terrorists have already won.

  7. We don’t need more consumption — we need more people brave (or stupid) enough to sell these forbidden items.

    1. It’s so much more convenient to complain about it on the intertube.

  8. Anyone who has ever brought home a dozen eggs from a grocer’s shelves has purchased raw food.

    When will the state finally mandate hard boiled eggs? For the love of God, will someone please edit the raw eggs scene out of Rocky?

    1. Don’t be silly. Eggs can come scrambled in the shell are as well. Libertarians are such hysterics.

      1. I heard that was done by feeding the chickens the morning after pill, and I don’t cotton to Big Pharma horning in on my breakfast.

      2. Where would we be without Ron Popeil?

    2. And hey, if you don’t like your eggs hardboiled or scrambled (with extra hormonal goodness?) you’re still free to not eat them. Buying them is another matter…

  9. Well, we all know the FDA is about as useless as the TSA.

    http://www.total-anon.us.tc

  10. This is why we have the Second Amendment. Dead bad cops are good cops. “…whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these Ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it….”

    1. The Amish are pacifists. So they are easy targets for the well armed federal cowards.

      1. That is what I was thinking. What kind of chicken shit coward picks on the Amish.

        1. Ye have yet to meet our Mennon-Knights!

      2. Well, the cops were probably afraid the Amish would have muskets. Maybe even those deadly fifty-caliber assault muskets.

    2. Is it me, or are the F.B.I. trolls becoming more and more obvious?

      1. I don’t think it’s you.

      2. Citizen Nothing…is that some kinda Sovereign Citizen name?

  11. First they came for the raw milk.

    Then they came for the tractor pulls.

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  13. Look, I live in California. Our state mandates tags be affixed to computer plugs because the cancer risk of handling the rubber and that you should wash your hands after plugging or unplugging the power cord. This kind of shit doesn’t even make me blink any more.

    1. the cancer risk of handling the rubber

      Makes me wonder what else has warning tags in California.

    2. the cancer risk of handling the rubber

      Maybe it should make you blink more! When is the last time the cops raided your house to make sure you washed your hands after handling your power cord. Its not about “warnings” it’s about overkill gun drawn raids

  14. I am usually all for the “free to do whatever you want…just don’t bother me” routine, but this is really stupid.

    I work in the public health sphere…health economist, so I hate nanny state shenanigans and the social engineering projects with which most people in my field seem to be obsessed. Still, there are some bare-bone basic health and safety related things that make sense. Mandatory pasteurization is one of them.

    For Buddha’s sake, in the 1930s raw milk outbreaks were 25% of all food and waterborne outbreaks and caused a lot of infant deaths. Even though farm conditions might be better, you are still going to get traces of cow shiat in your farking milk. Enjoy your: Brucella, Campylobacter, Listeria, Mycobacterium bovis, Salmonella, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli, Shigella, Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pyogenes, and Yersinia enterocolitica.

    The FDA screws up all the time. They have a tough job. But for costing us $3 per person, I would rather deal with them instead of going back to Upton Sinclair’s “The Jungle” days.

    This isn’t the world where you go to your local butcher and can see the cleanliness of the facility, inspect the product, and maybe even know or have seen the conditions where the animal was raised.

    This is the world where Omnicorp’s agricultural subsidiary Megafoods runs a Concentrated Animal Feedlot Operation in potentially questionable conditions that no one on the outside can ever really see beyond USDA inspectors, ships to processors, and arrives in your supermarkets in a nice clean shrink wrapped package completely devoid of the information you would have otherwise potentially had in scenario #1.

    I am willing to pay to for some USDA inspector to be my surrogate with perhaps more knowledge than I would have on the subject. They will never be perfect and likely far from it, but an extra level of accountability that costs comparatively little is fine by me.

    Imperfect information is a fact of life. Unless, you are the diehard who blindly trusts idealized versions of markets that these types of health and safety issues will just correct themselves in time, the questions is this “how many people have to get sick and possibly die before the market corrects itself?”, “how many planes have to fall out of the sky before the market corrects itself?”, “how many insurance companies will sell phony life insurance policies and fade into obscurity?”, etc.

    As libertarians, we bitch and moan about the burdens of certain types of regulations that are particularly odious, but this shouldn’t be one of them. Caveat emptor is a convenient haven for scoundrels.

    1. This isn’t the world where you go to your local butcher and can see the cleanliness of the facility

      Actually, the customers we’re talking about here can do exactly that.

      -jcr

    2. shiat
      farking

      Fuck off back to stupid shitty Fark if you’re you’re afraid to type “fuck”.

      1. Although I’m generally an accept-no-substitutes kind of girl where swearing is involved, I’ll cut someone a break for using frelling. But farking? That’s just weak.

        Also, my phone apparently has some kind of special geek speak spell check, because it recognizes “frelling” as a real word.

      2. Son of mother of a white hot iron rod sodomizing fucking whore…that’s better, heh heh

    3. You make a fine case for having inspected and certified milk.

      That is not, however, the same thing as a case for outlawing raw milk.

      1. it doesn’t matter to me up until someone on medicaid gets hospitalized from eating/drinking a bad batch of raw stuff from a farmer’s market. we can have a discussion about the viability of medicaid, but to the extent we foot the bill for people’s health, what they do to themselves becomes our business. its paternalistic and i hate it but that’s life.

        1. it doesn’t matter to me up until someone on medicaid gets hospitalized from eating/drinking a bad batch of raw stuff from a farmer’s market.

          Why stop there? The majority of all foodborne illnesses are from raw produce. If it is acceptable to mandate pasteurization of milk, then why not outlaw all raw produce and mandate canned blanched produce?

          we can have a discussion about the viability of medicaid,

          Viability is one issue of Medicaid, but IMO, morality is the more important.

          but to the extent we foot the bill for people’s health, what they do to themselves becomes our business.

          No. This is simply the mentality of the statist. Because government mandates such a burden on all does not grant us the authority to claim that endless burdens shall be acceptable in order to minimize the problems created from the earlier burden.

          its paternalistic and i hate it but that’s life.

          Your argument doesn’t convey any real disagreement with such continuous government intervention, since it rationalizes why more intervention is perfectly reasonable.

          Of course life has facts that are disagreeable, but reason dictates that we strive for those conditions which are proper.

        2. Oh fuck you, you want to use the fact that the government is entirely wrapped up in our lives to advocate for more government.

    4. I’ll see your derp and raise you herp.

      1. Funny every time.

    5. There is always one of these assholes on a thread.
      Raw milk is an ingredient. Pasteurized milk does not do all of the things that raw milk does and does not taste the same. Just as with meat, eggs, etc. it is up to the consumer to make sure it is adequately processed to make it safe to consume. And if the consumer is not concerned about the risk (and people with a healthy immune system are at very little risk from raw milk), why should it be anyone else’s business. No one is suggesting that industrially produced milk sold at stores should not be pasteurized. This is not a discussion about whether pasteurization is a good thing or not. It clearly is.
      A few things have also changed since the 1930s to make raw milk less hazardous. Ubiquitous refrigeration is probably the biggest. Antibiotics also did not exist in the days before pasteurization.

      1. For one thing, you can’t make yogurt with Ultra Pasteurized milk, and most of teh grocery store milk these days is Ultra Pasteurized. But maybe this farker thinks we shouldn’t make our own yogurt, either.

        1. I was almost offended by the farking obvious troll.

    6. tl;dr. Looks like you made an awesome statement about having inspected/certified milk without addressing the argument over whether people should be raided for possessing raw milk.

    7. Christ on a crutch, the FDA you are so high on treated an Amish farmer as if he was a heavily armed crack dealer.

      Is that really necessary? Is this truly worthy of being enforced at gunpoint? At the risk of shooting an innocent person?

      Libertarian my ass.

    8. This isn’t the world where you go to your local butcher and can see the cleanliness of the facility, inspect the product, and maybe even know or have seen the conditions where the animal was raised.

      Did you RTFA? This isn’t about repealing requirements for milk sold in the supermarket to be pasteuized. This is about small producers selling directly to consumers, who frequently are coming to the farm to purchase.

    9. “But for costing us $3 per person, I would rather deal with them instead of going back to Upton Sinclair’s “The Jungle” days.”

      And nobody’s mentioned this yet? I think that’s definitely Drink!-worthy.

    10. Know one thing you stupid fucking conformist, you have already given up your freedom of speech and your most likely all for gun control. Nobody says you have to go suck milk from a cows tit, or feed it to your baby. These people do it by choice and they have signed a waiver. CONTROL IS CONTROL! THE MORE CONTROL THE LESS FREEDOM!

  15. Personally, I like the convenience of milk lasting for more than a couple of days before it goes bad, but I sure as hell don’t want my tax money spent on harassing people who want it raw.

    -jcr

    1. harassing people who want it raw

      No glove, no love.

    2. I think that the Enforcer is not “usually all for the ‘free to do whatever you want…just don’t bother me’ routine.”

      1. Yeah, if selling raw milk to enthusiastic buyers crosses a line for him, he is firmly on the “do as we say” side of things.

    3. “I like the convenience of milk lasting for more than a couple of days before it goes bad”

      Actually, raw milk does not go “bad” — it turns into cheese. Pasteurized milk smells rotten after being left out. Raw milk simply changes after a few days out, when the curds are gathered into delicious cheese. How do I know? I make and eat it. Most people with so many opinions about it have never had it.

  16. If the government keeps pushing them like that, the coppers might actually need guns on their next raid.

    Or so I hope. Probably not though. 🙁

  17. I’m glad to see people fighting for raw milk are gaining steam. It’s a ridiculous regulation to have.

    http://www.intellectualtakeout…..t-raw-milk

  18. That’s nice of those thugs to come in there with guns drawn. You never know what those crazy people that want to eat kosher food are capable of.

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  20. As I see it, this is a natural extension of the war on drugs. Once we let the government dictate what we can and cannot consume, all the government has to do is claim something is dangerous and send out a SWAT team. Happens all the time with herbs, vitamins, amino acids, etc.

    The bottom line is we can fight endless battles over individual substances or we can take a principled stand that what we consume is none of the governments business.

  21. we can have a discussion about the viability of medicaid, but to the extent we foot the bill for people’s health, what they do to themselves becomes our business

    yeah but no mention of how we are paying for their cancer treatments or obesity drugs because they only eat genetically modified and packaged food that can last years. i would rather pay for some antibiotics thank you.

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