raw milk must make people stupid

by twit

Thank you, Associated Press, this about made my head explode:

“Raw milk is like a magic food for children,” said Sally Fallon, president of the Weston A. Price Foundation, a nonprofit that advocates consumption of whole, natural foods.

because I don’t care if it has “health benefits” if it also is a serious health risk. Especially to kids.

More than 1,000 people, including two who died, got sick from raw milk or cheese made from raw milk from 1998 to 2005, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

even the FDA has got this one spelled out pretty clearly, although it is basic fucking germ theory, so it isn’t exactly asking a whole hell of a lot.

who needs to search for an appropriate metaphor when our tax dollars have written that giving a kid raw milk is like giving a kid a loaded gun with a bullet loaded at random:

Pasteurization, since its adoption in the early 1900s, has been credited with dramatically reducing illness and death caused by contaminated milk. But today, some people are passing up pasteurized milk for what they claim is tastier and healthier “raw milk.” Public health officials couldn’t disagree more.

Drinking raw (untreated) milk or eating raw milk products is “like playing Russian roulette with your health,” says John Sheehan, director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Division of Dairy and Egg Safety. “We see a number of cases of foodborne illness every year related to the consumption of raw milk.”

as far as I know, pasteurization is a process that prevents things like this:

A Florida woman was hospitalized and unresponsive beginning in mid-September. Another three people in Georgia suffered respiratory failure and were placed on ventilators after consuming the carrot beverage. The following month, in October, a Quebec resident was also stricken with botulism after drinking carrot juice.

but no worries, the government’s on it. kind of:

It is a violation of federal law enforced by the FDA to sell raw milk packaged for consumer use across state lines (interstate commerce). But each state regulates the sale of raw milk within the state (intrastate), and some states allow it to be sold. This means that in some states dairy operations may sell it to local retail food stores, or to consumers directly from the farm or at agricultural fairs or other community events, depending on the state law.

In states that prohibit intrastate sales of raw milk, some people have tried to circumvent the law by “cow sharing,” or “cow leasing.” They pay a fee to a farmer to lease or purchase part of a cow in exchange for raw milk, claiming that they are not actually buying the milk since they are part-owners of the cow.

Wisconsin banned cow-leasing programs after 75 people became infected with Campylobacter jejuni bacteria in 2001 from drinking unpasteurized milk obtained through such a program.

and when I say ‘kind of,’ I mean, not really… From the AP again:

No government agency or group tracks raw milk sales nationwide.

But in Washington state, the number of dairies selling raw milk to the public grew from six to 22 in the past two years. In Massachusetts, the number has more than doubled to 24 in the past five years even as the overall number of dairies has declined.

update: via MSNBC on June 4, 2008:

A rare form of tuberculosis caused by illegal, unpasteurized dairy products, including the popular queso fresco cheese, is rising among Hispanic immigrants in Southern California and raising fears about a resurgence of a strain all but eradicated in the U.S.

Cases of the Mycobacterium bovis strain of TB have increased in San Diego county, particularly among children who drink or eat dairy foods made from the milk of infected cattle, a study in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases shows.

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3 Responses to raw milk must make people stupid

  1. Shalini says:

    Yes, milk is a medium that a lot of bacteria – especially strains of TB just love. Unless you are very sure of the cow you get your milk from, unless you can ensure a ‘from the cow to the table’ in a jiffy, unless you know for sure that the milk is absolutely safe – raw milk can be a dangerous road to travel. That is exactly why Pasteur advocated pasteurisation!

  2. Reserch your facts first says:

    RAW MILK
    January 27, 2009 by lifeofsamantha

    This is NOT just my opinion I have done LOTS of searching and listing to others talk about it.

    During the 1920s and early 1930s, several studies were carried out that compared the effects of raw versus pasteurized milk in children. In one study, 224 children at the Boston Dispensary were fed either raw certified milk or grade A pasteurized milk (Archives of Pediatrics, 1926). Those fed raw milk were healthier than those fed pasteurized milk, even when the pasteurized milk was supplemented with cod liver oil. In a comparison of two groups of over 100 babies, those fed pasteurized milk had lower weight grain, more rickets and diarrhea and a greater mortality than those fed raw milk (Archives of Pediatrics, 1929). And in a study of school children in Scotland, those given raw milk had better growth than those fed pasteurized milk

    Milk does do a body good, but only if it is the right kind of milk. In fact, pasteurized and/or homogenized milk can actually harm a body—not to mention the antibiotics and hormones if they are also present. When it comes to the question of milk, you have four basic options

    1. Eliminate milk and dairy products from your diet. This is not a good solution. If milk is eliminated from your diet, it is true that there are other sources of calcium; however, almost no one has a healthy enough diet to compensate for the absence of milk and that’s just the calcium—milk contains a variety of other beneficial properties that must be compensated for as well. Don’t even begin to think “supplements.” Supplements cannot even come close to making up the difference as they are not assimilated in the same way and can in some cases even be harmful.

    2. You could continue drinking milk and consuming dairy products. However, if you are drinking pasteurized milk, you will be lacking most of the vitamins, minerals etc. anyway. In addition, if you drink homogenized milk you will get a healthy dose of artery clogging fat. If you are drinking milk with antibiotics and hormones present you are faced with the problems that will present.

    3. You could find a source for raw milk. While you should have no problems consuming this type of milk, you do run a risk that at some point you could drink a batch with harmful bacteria.

    4. The fourth alternative is the best in my opinion. Drink raw milk from a source that can test each batch to ensure its safety, thus bypassing pasteurization and retaining all the nutrients and skipping homogenization.

    Funny things that people say:

    “More than 300 people in the United States got sick from drinking raw milk or eating cheese made from raw milk in 2001, and nearly 200 became ill from these products in 2002, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    Raw milk may harbor a host of disease-causing organisms (pathogens), such as the bacteria campylobacter, escherichia, listeria, salmonella, yersinia, and brucella. Common symptoms of foodborne illness from many of these types of bacteria include diarrhea, stomach cramps, fever, headache, vomiting, and exhaustion.”

    A whole 300? My oh my… Of course I wonder how many got sick from eating “inspected food” while dining out. I’ve open my share of milk cartons and tried to pour out milk that came out in clumps.

    If your animals are healthy, your practices clean, and your temperatures right I cannot see what the risks are. The above listed bacteria don’t naturally occur in milk. They are contaminents.

    Well duh. Of course more than 300 people got sick from eating “inspected food”. Think about the peanut butter that is going around!

    The sane people realize that there is around a third of a BILLION people in this country who consume some amount of pasteurized milk on a regular basis.
    Compare that to the thousands who drink raw milk every day.

    But knock yourself out and stick your lips on the udders if you want to. I’ll stick with the “inspected food” myself.

  3. Pingback: TERRIBLEMINDS: Chuck Wendig, Freelance Penmonkey » Blog Archive » Get In My Belly: A Fresh Table Update

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