Aajonus Vonderplanitz: “They Have Come to My Backyard Los Angeles to Cut Off the Legs” of Food Rights Movement

From the Aajonus Vonderplanitz raw milk web site, www.rawmilk.org. The question I keep asking myself about the raid Wednesday on Rawesome Foods is this: why is the government confronting Aajonus Vonderplanitz?

Certainly officials had to know going into his private food outlet in Venice, CA, that they were taking on someone who is both extremely knowledgeable about the laws and also more than willing to challenge the authorities.

Quite simply, Vonderplanitz won’t take grief from anyone, least of all public health regulators. He’s already made that clear. Yesterday, his lawyer walked out of a hearing scheduled by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. “That hearing was to occur less than 24 hours after the raid; impossible, no sane court would support such brief notice,” he says.
Moreover, according to Vonderplanitz, the search warrant used in the Wednesday raid claims the buying club was “used as the means of committing a felony.” Serious allegation.

In an email to members explaining the events of the last couple days, Vonderplanitz says he previously confronted the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health in 2005, when it tried to shutter Rawsome, quoting from a letter he sent then:

“Without intending to be antagonistic, we must face the legal implications regarding your trespassing onto that property clearly posted as no trespassing. Seven of the members testified that you enter the posted NO-Trespassing premises without permission or warrant. Four of them testified that they told you to leave the property immediately but you refused and did not leave for about 30 minutes. That was antagonism and harassment against us. We are willing to forgive your trespass unless you and the county continue to harass us. Resultantly, the Hearing Notice is without legal merit. This letter and supportive document have explained everything that you would have learned in a hearing and we choose not to attend.”

In his email, Vonderplanitz asks, “Why, five years later, is the county attempting to close Rawesome?”

He offers some possible reasons, including his backing of raw dairy farmers who have been targeted by federal and state officials in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Illinois. Government officials “are upset,” he states.

But beyond those immediate issues, wonders Vonderplanitz, “What is the larger picture/story here?” 
He offers his ideas: “We must consider that the government is aligned with Big Dairy and has clandestine representatives in government. They want to continue to monopolize dairy and regulate it to the point that small dairy farmers cannot survive with or without them. The proverbial thorn in their sides is the healthy raw dairy movement. It has also been suggested and argued by many people that there exists a ruling class that wants to dumb-down everybody so that they can be easily controlled. The greater civilization grows in numbers, the more they feel the need to control people. Lowering people’s health results in a weak populations that is not going to have the health, energy and time to stop politicians from stealing tax dollars for banksters,”

He also argues that local government agencies are doing the work of the federal government because they are so dependent on government funds.

His conclusion: “Obviously to me, they have come to my backyard Los Angeles to cut off the legs of Right to Consume Healthy Foods/me. (RTCHF is his nonprofit organization that sponsors other private food organizations.) They want to win this here so they can establish precedents. We cannot allow that to happen. It will affect everyone in USA and Canada.”

I wonder if there’s another factor here that Vonderplanitz doesn’t allude to directly. If you read through his buying club membership materials, he takes what many in public health would consider to be a radical view of food rights. The application says the member wants food that is not only free of chemicals and undue heating or cooling, but also “may contain microbes, including but not limited to salmonella, E.coli, campylobacter,listeria, gangrene and parasites…” In other words, don’t try to give us protection we don’t want.

This promises to be a protracted battle. Vonderplanitz invites those who want to support his legal efforts to contribute through his web site.


Shari Danielson, who runs a popular food web site, a couple weeks ago came up with this idea that food poisoning lawyer Bill Marler and I should engage in a debate about raw milk. So we went back and forth via email, and she just posted the entire exchange. Interesting debate, now that I look at it again…and we kept it civil.


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19 Comments on "Aajonus Vonderplanitz: “They Have Come to My Backyard Los Angeles to Cut Off the Legs” of Food Rights Movement"

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July 2, 2010 11:39 pm

It could be the government is getting more desperate. The more they loose control the harder they’ll push back.

On the other hand they simply may be getting more bold. The events of the ‘war on terror’ and the bank bailouts have brought illegality and corporate control of government out into the open; and they got away with it all. They are therefore much more bold now than they were in the past and increasingly willing to openly champion their masters in a way they would not dare before.

Bill Anderson
July 3, 2010 1:47 am

Pete is right.

The United States needs to be dismantled. It is a hollow shell of a failing empire, built on a dwindling supply of fossil fuels. The system is lashing out in a desperate attempt to hold onto power in the face of the blatant corruption which pervades the entire political and economic system.

If we don’t want to be ruled by global corporate trade interests like the WTO and World Bank, then we must embrace diversified, sustainable, localized agriculture, and local democracy. If we are to survive this "hollowing out of the nation-state" as Michael Schmidt recently talked about on his blog, it is imperative that we build such local democracy and permaculture.

Tim wightman
July 3, 2010 3:29 am

As many of the long time leaders of the raw milk movement have always said, it starts wth milk, and the actions we see in the food safety bills and whats been happening from state regulators, resemble actions 10 years ago in raw milk, now incompass all food.
Its not just about milk, its about all the food we choose to eat that is not within the "normal channels".
A bright spot in all this heavy handed regulatory action across our nation, for every farm/buying club that gets raided, there are at least 10 new unassociated or regulated groups forming to procure food, very quitely I might add.
The conversation has shifted from "who do I write and call" to "how do I keep my farmer and food chain operating.
The government and corporate interests behind all of this action is forcing the concerned population to do what is needed to take the next step in the local food movement.
Fear is no longer working, extreme pressure will only blow back on those applying it.
If I have learned anything in the past 16 years the harder the State squeezes, the more slips out between their fingers.
Tim Wightman

July 3, 2010 8:33 am

Can someone explain to me why the FBI is interested in a business not having a city health permit? What brought them into this?

Concerned Person
July 3, 2010 1:52 pm

The Colorado outbreak is up to 26 ill people. http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/24123738/detail.html


Don Wittlinger
July 3, 2010 5:58 pm

As big as the Aajonus story is it is indeed strange that so far the slience of the media is deafening why is that???
Besides this blog The Huffington Post and the following link is the only info that my search turned up.
If true this is a LEGAL story that should freighten all Americans and perhaps the LEGAL folks advising the enforcement agencies should join the ranks of the 20+% of the nations unemployed?
And folks from Canada on the raid did I read that correctly? What is the truth anyone know?

Elliot Manning
July 4, 2010 2:27 am

The raw milk debate link didn’t work.
A little searching on the site turned this up:

July 4, 2010 2:50 am

"As big as the Aajonus story is it is indeed strange that so far the silence of the media is deafening why is that???"

They planned well, didn’t they… rushing everything to occur just before a big mid-summer holiday when everyone’s busy planning their vacations, picnics, get-togethers, garage sales…

That’s why that hearing was so rushed… they sure didn’t want that to happen AFTER the Fourth when people have time to note what’s going on…..

Sylvia Gibson
July 4, 2010 3:29 am

"As big as the Aajonus story is it is indeed strange that so far the slience of the media is deafening why is that???"

Who owns and/or controls the media? There also could be fear of losing jobs if some stories where told…. Word of mouth and the internet so far haven’t been stopped. Education is still the key, factual statements repeated in a calm manner.

damaged justice
July 4, 2010 3:59 am

Goatmaid: "That’s why that hearing was so rushed… they sure didn’t want that to happen AFTER the Fourth when people have time to note what’s going on….."

I would hope this backfires if enough people notice and question the juxtaposition of such blatant attacks on our liberty with a national holiday to glorify how "free" we are. Lip service to form, rather than substance, makes it clear that the only freedom statists wish to allow is the freedom to do as they tell you.

When Frank Chodorov was informed that the solution to all problems was to elect Republicans to office, his response was that they proposed to clean up the whorehouse while leaving the business intact. Any attempt at a political solution is mere arguing over the liturgy, while steadfastly avoiding any discussion of what is actually being worshipped.

As government at all levels — federal, state and local — continues to spend itself and us into and far beyond bankruptcy, the illusion will eventually collapse. At some point, enough statists will decide that they can no longer afford to arrest, prosecute, jail, and ultimately kill people for the possession, use, sale, purchase and trade of food — already we see similar cracks in the "war on drugs". The moral argument has failed with them, and always will — but utilitarian financial reality will always assert itself, no matter how numerous and gigantic the lies.

Don Wittlinger
July 4, 2010 6:51 pm

Celebrate our freedom or should we be mourning its loss today???

Mark McAfee
July 5, 2010 1:54 pm

Dear Augonus and LA Rawsome consumers….

OPDC supports you all and stands with you. If you need any CA legal raw dairy products delivered to you during this tough time..please let us know. The recent actions of the various state and federal agencies are a desparate move to reduce the voice of Augonus. The do not know of whom they have picked a fight.

Augonus fears little, knows much and will fight them unconventionally and doggedlly. One call to 1-877 RAW MILK will keep the raw milk flowing until your sourcing issues can be figuered out. Please do not forget to get the video tape rolling….no video tape footage….means no public outrage. A quiet media is a bad and sad thing.

Armed federal thugs attacking any of us….means loss of food freedom for all of us…..you need footage of this.

All the best,

Mark McAfee

Don Wittlinger
July 5, 2010 6:01 pm

Believe it or not!
This new disease is called orthorexia nervosa and this "outbreak" is infecting "well educated" adults!
Shall we raw milk lovers soon be accused of harboring a serious psychological condition perhaps called rawmoorexia nervosa?
Are there any adults left running the SYSTEM?

Bob "BubbaBozo" Hayles
July 5, 2010 9:55 pm

Don, I owe you an apology. I read your comment and was sure I detected paranoia…then I went to your link and read the article. One part really stood out:

I am definitely seeing significantly more orthorexics than just a few years ago, said Ursula Philpot, chair of the British Dietetic Associations mental health group. Other eating disorders focus on quantity of food but orthorexics can be overweight or look normal. They are solely concerned with the quality of the food they put in their bodies, refining and restricting their diets according to their personal understanding of which foods are truly pure.

"Orthorexics commonly have rigid rules around eating. Refusing to touch sugar, salt, caffeine, alcohol, wheat, gluten, yeast, soya, corn and dairy foods is just the start of their diet restrictions. Any foods that have come into contact with pesticides, herbicides or contain artificial additives are also out."

Those of us who really pay attention to eating healthy…no pesticides, no GMO’s (soy, the most prevelant GMO worldwide), things like that…we are now officially mentally unstable.

Hmmm…didn’t Hitler and Stalin use that excuse to confine and eradicate folks they disagreed with?

Don, perhaps you aren’t paranoid after all…


Don Wittlinger
July 5, 2010 10:25 pm

YEA Bob but don’t forget Hitler and that other fellow really was concerned about the condition of their interned detainees teeth they also put fluoride [althou not made in China like ours] in the drinking water so maybe they did have some love for their citizens.Again pardon my sarcasm but after 68 years on the SAD I have suffered another "outbreak" sarcasm aflicts me again and again. Now I have to worry about the new disease Rawmoorexia since I fall into the high "risk" group and have been unable to control my overpowering lust for raw milk raw cream raw butter raw cheese raw kefir raw yogurt from the clean grass fed wicked beasts called cows and now this malady has lasted over 5 years. WOE IS ME Why have I not gotten sick for all everyone of TPTB say that is my asured fate??
LOL or cry out loud both I guess!!!
Plus I accept you most humble apology Bob

Bob "BubbaBozo" Hayles
July 5, 2010 11:17 pm

Don, with all the recent increased and seemingly coordinated enforcement activity, the FBI being in on the Vonderplanitz raid, and now the article you linked to, I think I’ll do a Google search for a good, reasonably priced, tinfoil hat.


Milky Way
July 5, 2010 11:44 pm

There’s a funny typo in the story…

San Diego Business
FDA Shuts Down Lifesoy For Filthy Conditions


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