According to the Dairy Reporter, the country’s largest raw milk dairy, California-based Organic Pastures Dairy, has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) “alleging that the agency repeatedly failed to respond to its petition to amend a law that forbids the sale of raw milk-based dairy products across state lines.”
December 18, 2012
Raid at Glencolton Farm in Ontario (Source: Michael Schmidt, Facebook)
Ontario, Canada raw milk farmer Michael Schmidt, who was recently granted leave to appeal another court case related to raw milk production, is in the news again. Yesterday his farm, Glencolton, was raided for suspicion of his connection to a group called “Farmers Peace Corp.” that is working to prevent a local herd of rare breed sheep from being confiscated and euthanized. One of the sheep was suspected of having scrapie, a prion disease. For more, see The Bovine, David Gumpert’s article on The Complete Patient, and Michael Schmidt’s Facebook page.
August 3, 2012
- by Rebekah Wilce
As snow started to fall, a Mennonite dairy farmer arrived at the courthouse in Baraboo, Wisconsin, on March 2 for a hearing on four charges against him related to the production and distribution of milk and other foods. Vernon Hershberger operates Grazin’ Acres Farm, a small family dairy farm in Loganville, and is part of a private food club that leases his cows and receives distributions of raw milk and other foods via what he calls a members-only “food pantry” on the farm. (more…)
March 5, 2012
The Food Rights Network will be on vacation from January 1 – January 13. Happy New Year, and look for the next “Raw Milk in the News” on Thursday, January 19!
- “Small Farmers Fight the Good Fight”: According to the Rock River Times (12/28), “In Loganville, Wis., the saga of Mennonite farmer Vernon Hershberger has switched from defense to offense after four charges were levied this month. . . . The state charged him with a retail food violation between Aug. 6, 2009, and June 3, 2010, a raw milk producer violation between Feb. 15, 2010, and June 3, 2010, a dairy plant violation between Feb. 15, 2010, and June 3, 2010, and a ‘holding order’ violation between June 2, 2010, and July 8, 2010. Hershberger ignored the raid and went back to business as usual of supplying small amounts of organic products to members, or in his view, fellow owners.
“Hershberger has a Wednesday, Jan. 11, court date at 1 p.m. The date was originally set a week earlier, but Hersberger asked for a continuance to set up a rally by food club members and by local concerned citizens to be held outside the courthouse, 515 Oak St., in the city of Baraboo, before Court Commissioner Leo Grill. . . .
“Hershberger has never laid claim to being a retailer.
“‘It just so happens that I am the one who takes care of the cows, which we all share in a lease agreement,’ Hershberger said. ‘Let’s remember that by law, to lease is to own and that is why the state is picking on me. . . .’
“The state’s Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) took issue with the club, which has members scattered across the state, and raided Vernon’s farm. They taped his refrigerators shut and cited it as a crime scene. . . . Vernon was held at gunpoint in his living room in front of his young family . . .” (more…)
December 29, 2011
This is the second in a two-part series by the Center for Media and Democracy’s Food Rights Network (FRN) about challenges to local food sovereignty across the United States. It was originally published on Alternet. For more, see the first article, on the lawsuit against Blue Hill, Maine farmer Dan Brown brought by the State of Maine and Maine’s Agriculture Commissioner, here.
Maine farmer Dan Brown, who milks one cow and sells milk to his neighbors, is being sued by the State of Maine for “unlicensed distribution and sale of milk and food products.” The lawsuit has sparked protest in Maine and concern in communities around the country.
In an interview with the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD), Brown said, “One of these times, they’re going to come after one of us, and it’s going to be that Rosa Parks moment . . . [for] the food system.”
The “Local Food and Community Self-Governance Ordinance” that passed in Brown’s town of Blue Hill, Maine, on April 2, 2011, asserting its “citizens’ right to foods of their choice” without impediment by federal and state regulations, served as a model for several counties in California. CMD spoke with three farmers and advocates about the food sovereignty movement there, and how the suit against Farmer Brown may affect their struggle. (more…)
December 12, 2011