Free Minds & Free Markets

Minnesota Farmer Found "Not Guilty" in Raw Milk Case

A Minnesota farmer who volunteers at the Freedom Farm co-op, which distributes raw milk (along with many other products) to about 130 members, says no one has ever gotten sick from the milk he regularly picks up from local Amish farmers.

He was nonetheless charged with three misdemeanor counts of selling unpasteurized milk, operating without a food license and handling adulterated or misbranded food. After a three-day trial and more than four hours of deliberation, during which the city attorney argued that the purpose of anti-raw milk laws is to protect the public health, a jury found Alvin Schlangen not guilty.

While this victory sets no precedent, raw milk advocates were pretty pumped:

Schlangen's attorney, Nathan Hansen [called it] "it's a huge victory for food freedom."

"I think the jury read the statute correctly," Hansen said. "The Department of Agriculture reads a lot of things into the statute that just aren't there.

Schlangen is set to appear in court again in nearby Stearns County next month on similar charges.

Check out Reason TV on other raw milk providers who haven't been so lucky:

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  • ||

    "I think the jury read the statute correctly," Hansen said.

    Or they were educated about nullification. Either way, good job.

  • rts||

    Yeah I'd rather the explanation be the jury said "fuck this shit" rather than "reading a statue correctly".

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Speaking of public health,

    Researchers argue that herd immunity is best pursued as a strategy of self-interest rather than altruism.

    But allowing people to pursue their self-interest is too chaotic and not as morally self-satisfying as coercion, right?

  • Fluffy||

    Gotta agree with Kristen here. I think the first few pebbles of a potential nullification avalanche have started to roll down the mountainsides here and there across the US.

    Maybe I'm too hopeful, though. Probably, I guess. But still.

  • sarcasmic||

    I hope you're right.

  • ||

    The fact that we've recently seen a few refusals to convict for bullshit is promising. We'll see if it snowballs.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Yeah, you would want to see snowballing.


  • ||

    I don't have to explain myself to you!

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • ||

    What's the matter with you two, fighting at a time like this? You're gonna use up all the oxygen.

  • Paul.||

    Episiarch will use his half the way he wants, and HM can use his half as he sees fit...

  • Heroic Mulatto|| rights!

  • Ice Nine||

    Why is Lee Marvin hugging all those girls?

  • Ska||

    They don't realize just what his new Dirty Dozen is going to be about.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    This is a dark day for little cereal eaters and Santa on Christmas.

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    If a kid doesn't want raw ass chunky milk, any parent that forces them to consume it is fucking evil.

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    Unfortunately this guy will continue to be harassed if he does the same stuff he was doing before. The regulation needs to be challenged.

  • Juice||

    Do you think a different jury would convict?

  • The Late P Brooks||

    "Your Honor, the jury find the defendant not guilty of all charges. Because FUCK YOU, THAT'S WHY."

    *general applause and cheering in courtroom*


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