“To pasteurize or not to pasteurize;” raw milk was back in the news this week on DairyLine as a lot of eyes watched whether Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle would sign legislation allowing raw milk sales directly to consumers.
National Milk’s Chris Galen reported in Thursday’s DairyLine that Wisconsin would join over 24 other states that allow some form of raw milk sales, be it in stores, directly off the farm, or through cow-sharing programs.
He said that National Milk has “very serious concerns about this general trend of states to liberalize access to products that we know are going to make people sick.” There have been several incidents in the past few months in states across the country, he said, “where raw milk has been tied to serious pathogens that no one wants to contract,” and “the health issues really get poo-pooed and swept away when these state legislatures look at the raw milk issue.”
It’s why National Milk and the International Dairy Foods Association issued the press release last week urging Governor Doyle to veto the bill “but we need to play some offense and some defense here in helping to shift the tide away from this particular issue.”
One of the ironies, according to Galen, is that Congress is considering a food safety bill that would do the exact opposite and strengthen prohibitions of pathogens in the food supply and yet at the state level, “more states making certain that more pathogens will get into the food supply.”