Colorado Public Health Officials Go On the Warpath–A Farm Store Shut Down, Milk Producers Receive Cease-and-Desist Orders, Customers “In Tears” Over Food Losses

For 18 years, Phil Haynes has been selling his ranch’s buffalo meat through a store at the ranch, Rocky Plains Quality Meats, outside the northern Colorado town of Dacono.

Over the years, he opened a second store in nearby Loveland and added pork and chicken from other area producers, along with locally-produced fish. And a little over three years ago, he added raw goat’s and cow’s milk, produced by a nearby farm under Colorado’s cowshare law implemented five years ago.

Everything was going fine, until early December, when a feature article appeared in a local paper, profiling the raw milk supplier, Jon Erickson, owner of R Patch O’Heaven Dairy. The article quoted Erickson as saying that raw milk isn’t necessarily for everyone, and noted that demand for Erickson’s milk has been growing. The article also mentioned that Erickson’s milk was available at Haynes’ farm store.

“It was a beautiful article,” says Haynes.

A beautiful article, except that it appears to have unleashed the wrath of local and state officials on both Haynes and Erickson.

Within days of the article, and with no hint of illnesses, both of Haynes’ stores were visited by county health department regulators. They noticed that in addition to milk, Haynes offered yogurt, kefir, and cream cheese from Erickson’s dairy. That led to an investigation by the county planning board.

Within a couple weeks of the article, Haynes’ Dacono store was shut down for allegedly selling non-USDA-inspected meat and for operating a retail store in an area zoned for agriculture. He was also ordered, in the Loveland store, to move the milk out of the public area of the store, to a back area. A cease-and-desist letter threatens him with criminal charges if he doesn’t resolve all the problems within thirty days.

As for Erickson, he received a cease-and-desist order from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, demanding he discontinue making raw milk products like yogurt, butter, cream cheese, and kefir; only raw milk was allowed under Colorado’s cow share law passed in 2005, the letter indicated.

Moreover, it seems at least two other Colorado dairies have been served with similar cease-and-desist orders in the last few months.

I spoke with an official of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, who said the actions against Haynes and Erickson don’t represent a new campaign against raw milk and other nutrient-dense food. Patti Klocker, assistant director for the Division of Environmental Health and Sustainability for the Colorado DPHE, told me, “A number of things were going wrong here (at Haynes’ stores), so we did collaborate on this” with county public health authorities in going after Haynes. 

As for Erickson’s raw dairy, she said Colorado’s law allowing cow share operations only sanctions fluid milk. “It does not allow access to raw milk products.” She said three dairies have been asked  to “please discontinue this practice” of making other raw dairy products available to their shareholders. She said her department has “always intepreted the law in that fashion” and goes after dairies in violation “when it’s brought to our attention”–whether from county health officials or newspaper articles.

As for the requirement that Haynes, in the Loveland store that is still open, place raw milk in an area of the store out of view of shoppers, Klocker said that is necessary so it “is not getting mixed up with pasteurized products.”

She suggested that Colorado public health officials have become more watchful of raw milk producers in light of two  outbreaks of illness attributed to raw milk in the last two years.

Haynes says he has inquired in past years about any possible zoning problems for his Dacono farm store, and been told he was in compliance. He also says the health inspector got the facts wrong on his meat, that it is from a USDA-inspected facility, and packaging stamped as such. He thinks that’s all beside the point, in any event.

“This is a small piece of what’s going on in the U.S.,” he told me. “I can no longer buy a product that is good for me…The biggest thing they are taking away is my rights. I no longer have the right to purchase what I want to. It’s not about zoning. It’s not about raw milk. It’s about freedom.”

His customers are quite upset, he added. “We have almost 200 families picking up their milk here. Raw milk products are fixing their children’s illnesses. We have people on chemo therapy using it to re-build their immune systems.”

Some of his customers say they can’t tolerate commercial meat, as well. His store’s closure “is frightening to them,” and a few have been “in tears…I had a woman last week who started crying when I told her she couldn’t get meat here. And another one wondered about the yogurt. I said the yogurt is gone, it’s not coming back.”

Erickson is a member of the board of the Raw Milk Association of Colorado, and argues that because the law on cow shares doesn’t prohibit raw dairy products besides milk, they must be allowed.

Neither Haynes nor Erickson wanted to discuss what steps they’ll take to deal with the clampdown by Colorado officials.

There are obviously a number of things occurring here. Public health officials, who are highly suspicious of raw milk under any circumstances, are putting producers under heightened surveillance, and tightly enforcing their view of the existing law. But the word also seems to be going out to local public health and planning/zoning officials to get in on the act, much as they did in Minnesota with the shutdown of a farm store and Minneapolis buying club in light of illnesses attributed to the Hartmann Farm.

What are producers and distributors to do? Trying to fight regulators intent on putting you out of business can be a losing battle, since there’s always another regulation or requirement to fulfill. ?That is the question for these and a growing number of other producers and sellers of nutrient-dense food.


A commentary on the times: One of my articles on Grist last year, about the increasing number of farm raids, was ranked among the ten most popular for the year (actually, #7).

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35 Comments on "Colorado Public Health Officials Go On the Warpath–A Farm Store Shut Down, Milk Producers Receive Cease-and-Desist Orders, Customers “In Tears” Over Food Losses"

lola granola
January 6, 2011

Does anyone have the statute that legalized cow shares in Colorado (and any CO Dept. of Ag. Acts regarding this statute)?

Discussing who's in the right and who's in the wrong is a moot point until we see the legislation that regulates these activities.

January 6, 2011

He was giving it to chemo patients? Thank goodness he wasn't smart enough to obey the law. Shut. Down.

Janeen Covlin
January 6, 2011

John Doe… Isn't that TERRIBLE- I bet he held him down and "tubed" him! That evil dairy farmer…

January 6, 2011

He was giving it to chemo patients? Thank goodness he wasn't smart enough to obey the law."

Absolute nonsense. What would you have chemo patients drink… Ensure?

My 81-yo mother underwent chemo for lymphoma four years ago, and drank raw goatmilk before, during and ever since. Sometimes it was the ONLY thing that she could keep down while in chemo, and she rebounded faster than she would have had she sucked down that disgusting and literally sickening Ensure during those times as her doctor recommended. She has been drinking raw goat milk every day for the last eight years, ever since she moved near my farm.

What deters cancer recovery and immune system-rebuilding is doctors NOT telling patients to avoid sugar, fruit and starchy carbs. Carbohydrates FEED cancer, a fact doctors already KNOW since a major test for cancer relies on patients avoiding such carbs for 24 hours to starve cancer cells. The next day patients consume a radioactive drink FULL of sugar, wait for the sugar to hit their system, then are xrayed to see where the cancer cells are most active… CARBOHYDRATES are what make those cancer cells active. They can't see the cancer cells as well without the sugar!!

So, what do doctors tell cancer patients to eat when they can't keep anything down?


I was horrified when my mother showed me the case of Ensure she'd bought during her treatment per her doctor's orders. Fortunately, I showed her the ingredient list before she opened the case:

Water, Corn Syrup, Maltodextrin Corn, Sodium And Calcium Caseinates, Sugar Sucrose, Canola Oil, Corn Oil, High-Oleic Safflower Oil, Soy Protein Isolate, Soy Lecithin, Natural And Artificial Flavors, Carrageenan, FD&C Red No. 3, FD&C Yellow No. 6, FD&C Blue No. 1.

Oh yeah, Ensure is really gonna make cancer patients healthier. Luckily, because she hadn't opened the case she was able to return it.

Doctors KNOW that sugar and carbs make cancer cells grow… so why aren't they telling patients to avoid carbohydrates as much as possible???

Whole, real foods are what rebuild ill patients, not crap full of substandard component ingredients put together in a factory. My mother survived her treatment, and is now cancer-free… because she now eats a very low carbohydrate diet of only whole, real foods, including raw goat and Jersey milk.

Who do YOU work for, John Doe??

Truly Concerned
January 6, 2011

I believe John Doe is actually Dr. Josef Mengele returned from the dead.

The Complete Patient
January 6, 2011

lola granola,
Here is one interpretation of the Colorado legislation, passed in 2005, that allows cow shares.

From that assessment: "Farmers running cowshare programs can only distribute unpasteurized 'fluid milk products' legally. Under state regulatory definitions, this would include milk, cream, yogurt, and cottage cheese. This would not include butter and cheese. State regulations define butter and cheese as manufactured milk and dairy products. The state code prohibits any cowshare programs involving manufactured milk and dairy products."

Clearly, the Colorado Dept. of Public Health and Environment interprets the provisions differently.

So part of the problem is that there's no straightforward answer to your inquiry.


lola granola
January 6, 2011

Part of the problem is that we depend on someone else's "interpretation" of the statutes instead of going to the statues directly, ourselves.

Here's the statute I was looking for:

SECTION 1. Part 1 of article 5.5 of title 25, Colorado Revised Statutes, is amended BY THE ADDITION OF A NEW SECTION to read:

25-5.5-117. Raw milk. (1) The acquisition of raw milk from cows or goats by a consumer for use or consumption by the consumer shall not constitute the sale of raw milk and shall not be prohibited if all of the following conditions are met:

(a) The owner of a cow, goat, cow shares, or goat shares shall receive raw milk directly from the farm or dairy where the cow, goat, or dairy herd is located and the farm or dairy is registered pursuant to subsection (2) of this section. A person who is the owner of a cow share or goat share in a cow, goat, or dairy herd may receive raw milk on behalf of another owner of the same cow, goat, or dairy herd. A person who is not an owner of a cow share or goat share in the same cow, goat, or dairy herd shall not receive raw milk on behalf of the owner of a cow share or goat share.

(b) The milk is obtained pursuant to a cow share or a goat share. A cow share or a goat share is an undivided interest in a cow, goat, or herd of cows or goats, created by a written contractual relationship between a consumer and a farmer that includes a legal bill of sale to the consumer for an interest in the cow, goat, or dairy herd and a boarding contract under which the consumer boards the cow, goat, or dairy herd in which the consumer has an interest with the farmer for care and milking, and under which the consumer is entitled to receive a share of milk from the cow, goat, or dairy herd.

(c) A prominent warning statement that the milk is not pasteurized is delivered to the consumer with the milk or is displayed on a label affixed to the milk container; and

(d) Information describing the standards used by the farm or dairy with respect to herd health, and in the production of milk from the herd, is provided to the consumer by the farmer together with results of tests performed on the cows or goats that produced the milk, tests performed on the milk, and an explanation of the tests and test results.

(2) Registration of a farm or dairy as required by paragraph (a) of subsection (1) of this section shall be accomplished by delivering to the Colorado department of public health and environment a written statement containing:

(a) The name of the farmer, farm, or dairy;

(b) A valid, current address of the farmer, farm, or dairy; and

(c) A statement that raw milk is being produced at the farm or dairy.

(3) Retail sales of raw, unpasteurized milk shall not be allowed. Resale of raw milk obtained from a cow share or goat share is strictly prohibited. Raw milk that is not intended for pasteurization shall not be sold to, or offered for sale at, farmers' markets, educational institutions, health care facilities, nursing homes, governmental organizations, or any food establishment.

(4) No person who, as a consumer, obtains raw milk in accordance with this section shall be entitled to sell or redistribute the milk.

(5) No producer of raw milk shall publish any statement that implies approval or endorsement by the colorado department of public health and environment.

SECTION 2. Safety clause. The general assembly hereby finds, determines, and declares that this act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, and safety.

Notice the term used here is "milk", not "fluid milk products". "Milk" is defined in the statutes as:
(10) "Milk" means the lacteal secretion, practically free from colostrum, which is obtained by the complete milking of healthy cows, excluding that milk obtained less than eight days before and less than four days after calving or for such longer period as may be necessary to render the milk practically colostrum free, and which contains not less than eight and one-quarter percent nonfat milk solids and not less than three percent milk fat; except that, in those instances where the normal secretion of the cows is less than three percent milk fat, this product shall be accepted as milk for manufacturing purposes.
(The link takes you to the homepage of the statutes. Click on "Colorado Revised Statutes", then "next doc", then "Title 25", then Art. "5.5")

I cannot find a definition for "fluid milk products", either in the statutes or in the Department of Public Health & Environment's regulations, which oversees milk regulations.

Mark McAfee
January 6, 2011

Colorado has just graduated….Congrats!!!

Six years ago when I spoke at the hearings to legalize the Colorado Cow Share system we knew this day would come. In fact, it appears to be right on time. Six years is about right.

These were the anticipated growing pains and reflect the growing need and public sentiments about their farmers and whole foods including raw milk. In the last six years the public has become accustomed to raw milk and its availability has grown. Compliments to RMAC and its producers, consumers and leadership….good job!!

Now the next steps. It is time to legalize raw milk sales in Colorado.

It appears that the administration in CO is just like CA. They enforce the law!! When Rawesome was raided and Palmer was arrested, those were the same CDFA agents that regulate OPDC and stay out of our business as long as we are living by the exact letter of the law. Life is good for OPDC because we follow the laws exactly.

Instead of objecting and fighting the laws in CO…it is time to convert the good will earned in the last six years into regulatory change. It is time to change the laws and allow legal raw milk sales and the sales of its associated products. If only on the farm. Hey….maybe even at the store. Perhaps that is not the future of CO raw milk….that is for the people of CO to decide. RMAC has done a great job of creating a very safety consciuos culture arround raw milk and the regulators know it and probably respect it as well. CO is progressive and the will of the people will shine through.

Just remember this, the Health Departments in CO are just darn good at their jobs and they do not look away when the rules are being stretched. It is important that the recent shut downs have occurred. These events spir change and the emotions of the consumers and the farmers. With out these shut-downs there would be no reason for change.

Congrats to CO on graduating to the next level of food freedom. Good work…now go and change the laws….you have the support now to do it.

By the way…chemo therapy patients in CA drink lots of raw milk. It is effective to control nausea and helps rebuild the dead intestinal environment left by the destruction and desparate "all-in" hope of chemotherapy.

John Doe…who do you work for?


Bill Anderson
January 6, 2011

Once again, this just demonstrates that the so-called "food safety" establishment has nothing to do with food safety and everything to do with enforcing corporate-state control of everything.

Anyone who understands food science understands that lowering the pH of a dairy product through promoting beneficial cultures inherintly creates protective properties against pathogens, when compared to a high-pH high-moisture product such as fluid drinking milk.

In the case of a product like yogurt or kefir the very low pH (often below 4.0) will cause undesirables to perish. In the case of butter, pH is not the determining factor, but that nearly all moisture has been removed. In the case of cheese, it is a combination of pH, reduced moisture, salt and age. And in all cases, there is the factor of competative exclusion — the beneficial cultures (cultures both intentionally added and indigenous to the milk) produce bacteriocins — compounds which inhibit the growth of other bacteria.

"Bacteriocins are proteinaceous toxins produced by bacteria to inhibit the growth of similar or closely related bacterial strain(s). They are typically considered to be narrow spectrum antibiotics, though this has been debated.[1] They are phenomenologically analogous to yeast and paramecium killing factors, and are structurally, functionally, and ecologically diverse.

Bacteriocins were first discovered by A. Gratia in 1925.[2][3] He was involved in the process of searching for ways to kill bacteria, which also resulted in the development of antibiotics and the discovery of bacteriophage, all within a span of a few years. He called his first discovery a colicine because it killed E. coli."

Bill Anderson
January 6, 2011

"Applications of bio-technology in traditional fermented foods"

Gordon Watson
January 6, 2011

no, John Doe is a little troll … one of those people spoken of in the Bible, who don't go to bed happy unless they've done some evil for the day … sent to wear out the saints

G. Edward Griffin had cancer back in about the 70s. He says something like – paraphrase – 'until the person with cancer gives up faith in mainstream medicine, he cannot begin to heal himself'
I tell people to make sure they do NOT say "raw milk cures cancer" Dr Joanna Budwig was half a century ahead of the herd, with her work explaining the harms of processed oils. Quark/cottage cheese is an essential part of the Budwig Protocol, which gets results head and shoulders above any other cancer treatment you can name. Simple Cheap Effective

Carol Peterson
January 6, 2011

"He was giving it to chemo patients?"

I'm pretty sure he wasn't 'giving' it to them but they were coming for it on their own, which means it was probably helping them. But of course we are no longer allowed to think for ourselves, we are expected all to be dumbed down to take in all the govt propaganda on what is 'good' for us. Heaven help us.

I took medicine for 13 years for a problem that didn't go away. Nearly 6 years ago I started drinking raw milk and I was cured. Thank goodness that was before the dumbing down had taken over me.

Smy Opin
January 6, 2011

I drank raw goat milk while on chemo.
I was under the care of both a conventional oncologist and a naturopathic doctor at the same time. They collaborated on my care.

A patient on chemo is not in a constant state of very low immunity. It fluctuates and steadily goes down the longer you take the drugs. Your immune system is constantly monitored.
We decided I would continue raw milk until the time that my immune system dropped to X. I would hold off until it came back up to Y.

But my immune system did not drop as anticipated. I maintained safe levels almost the entire time. I had only 2 days that I had to avoid raw milk due to lowered immunity.

I was very happy with this approach and felt I was getting the best that both worlds had to offer. Whether one wants to consider those benefits of raw milk to be real or placebo, it was a benefit. All the conventional treatments took on toll not only physically but psychologically, as well. I hated knowing I was poisoning my body with chemicals and radiation and approached every appointment with dread.

Raw milk, kvass, bone broths were the only things that made me believe I had a stinking chance hell.

lola granola
January 6, 2011

A good article, if anyone's interested.

"Cancer Is A Fungus…And It Is Curable":

lola granola
January 6, 2011

Is anyone else alarmed that what these people in Colorado were doing was blatantly illegal?

I'm starting to see a pattern…Michael Hartmann could legally sell raw milk under the MN Constitution, but instead broke the law and sold items that came from off-farm sources. And now these people in Colorado could legally sell raw milk through their cow share laws, but broke the law and not only sold value-added products, but also sold it off-farm and in a retail setting.

As I always say…I don't care if you break the law, just be aware that you're doing so. And these people in Colorado not only broke the law, but published their activities in a newspaper article? Do we not read the laws anymore, even when there are laws in place? Is it fair to say, "Colorado Public Health Officials Go On the Warpath", when in this instance, they were in…the right? Something's amiss…

Ken Conrad
January 7, 2011


You would probably find this book, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot very interesting.

Ken Conrad

January 7, 2011

Thanks for the link on cancer, Lola.

I read "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks" several months ago… fascinating. Highly recommended.

Mark McAfee
January 7, 2011

When a law is passed in the USA and that law was passed as a favor and with the seduction and payment delivered by Monsanto CAFO PMO Corporate prostitutes, and that law does not serve people but only the needs of the GMO dead food fascists trying to stay in power…is that a true law??? How can the needs of people be served by laws that sicken the people.

Martin Luther King said this about laws:

"One who breaks an unjust law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for law."
Martin Luther King, Jr.

There can be no change with out the stressors of emotional outcry from the people. The CO events are exactly what is needed to expose the hunger and need for change.

The farmers in CO have expressed the highest respect for law. I am not shocked at all by this. To the contrary….I have the deepest respect for their activities. My hope is that local leadership will take this ball and run with it. This is the catalyst for change.

Do not miss this boat!!! It will take another crisis to bring another boat back for you to get on board again!!


Blair McMorran
January 7, 2011

Lola wrote:
"Is anyone else alarmed that what these people in Colorado were doing was blatantly illegal?"

I challenge this perception – You posted the statute, so tell me what is blatantly illegal about what they were doing?

Statute says "A person who is the owner of a cow share or goat share in a cow, goat, or dairy herd may receive raw milk on behalf of another owner of the same cow, goat, or dairy herd."

The store owners were shareholders of the dairy, who are allowed to pick up / hold milk for other shareholders of the same dairy. All they did was provide a fridge in their store for their fellow shareholders (which happened to help their meat sales, but there was NO re-sale, NO access to the public – you had to be a shareholder to pick up your milk there). How is that illegal?

It is legal in the state of Colorado to own a cow or a goat. It is legal to drink the milk from that animal. It is also legal to contract services from a farmer for his/her time and expertise. These are value-added products that increase a farmer's income by 30-40%, and as Bill so eloquently wrote, they are MORE safe than raw milk, which is explicity legal.

You can't find these products in a retail store – they are only available from raw milk.

Yet CDPHE thinks they can dictate what a person does with their own milk, or hires someone else to do for them?

Moreover, they enlist the collaboration of other county agencies to intimidate, interrogate, and find every nth degree of violation — not only at the store, but for every single meat supplier in that store —– because a retail store offered to be a drop-point for milk? There was no threat to public health. This was intimidation, pure and simple.

Tell me who is crossing legal lines here?

Mark McAfee
January 7, 2011

Go Blaire!!! You make an excellent argument

Lead your people out of the desert!!!


Shana Milkie
January 7, 2011

Blair, your points are excellent and well-stated.

lola granola
January 7, 2011

You're right, Blair, it is allowed under statute for one shareholder of a dairy to pick up and hold milk of another shareholder of the same dairy. Is this what was done?

The owners of the store may have been shareholders, but as soon as it was put into their retail store, it was the store – an LLP – who was holding the milk, not the store owners. Was the LLP also a shareholder in the dairy?

Is it allowed under Colorado law to hold food items that are not for retail sale in a retail food establishment? I believe that these items were kept in full view of all store shoppers, not just members, as David wrote, "in the Loveland store that is still open, place raw milk in an area of the store out of view of shoppers, Klocker said that is necessary so it 'is not getting mixed up with pasteurized products.'"

And, "As for Erickson, he received a cease-and-desist order from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, demanding he discontinue making raw milk products like yogurt, butter, cream cheese, and kefir; only raw milk was allowed under Colorado's cow share law passed in 2005, the letter indicated."

This is absolutely true, as is stated in the statute. The statute only indicates that milk be available to shareholders, and as I noted, milk is defined in the statutes. Where in the statutes does it indicate that "cream, yogurt, butter, cream cheese and kefir" are allowed for sale to shareholders?

It's not a question of whether cultured dairy products are safer, that has already been established. The question on the table is whether or not it was legal under statute for these products to be sold to shareholders.

Does this farm take its legal advice from FTCLDF?

Mark McAfee
January 8, 2011

My gut says that the politics of the legal CO Cow Share arrangements got stretched to the breaking point when the manufactured products come into play. All is ok with just the raw milk….but creams, and yogurts etc….that is over the edge.

We must all remember that each of these products have a Standard of Identity under the PMO and under CO State Law. There is jealous market protection and legal enforcement about these products and their strict legal definitions. Innocent customer serving farmers can not approach these issues niavely. If a farmer wants to do things outside of the PMO or definitions….then he must really take a much more secret and direct approach with his distribution. Like…have the consumer come directly to his home to get the grey area products….stores are ruled by the regulators.

Welcome to my world!!


Michael Bortnick
January 8, 2011

At the Uncheese Party Blog:

Missouri farmstead cheese plant, Morningland Dairy is going to be in Howell County Circuit Court at 9am Central time on Tuesday, January 11th. The Missouri Attorney Generals Office is charging Morningland with 3 criminal charges and has also filed a Preliminary Injunction in hopes of getting a court order to destroy Morningland Dairys cheese.

Read about it:

Bill Anderson
January 8, 2011
Bill Anderson
January 8, 2011

re: Standards of Identity, we need to estalish standards of identity of for raw milk and raw milk products.

Already, big industry is trying to co-opt our market with heat-treated fake "raw milk" cheese, and ultra-filtration is sure to follow for drinking milk (and possibly other cultured fluid milk products).

The best way to combat this is to establish a standard of identity for REAL raw milk and cultured products (including cheese and butter made from REAL raw milk.)

However, this requires that we break outside the narrow ideological ultra-libertarian confines that have such a strangle hold on the raw milk movement. We must embrace regulation as a means to promote and protect our own interests, rather than just letting big corporate agri-business use the regulations as a way to oppress us.

Milky Way
January 8, 2011


Gov. Walker, "I'll Sign Raw Milk Bill With Safeguards"


Bill Anderson
January 8, 2011


Jim Doyle (outgoing governor) said the same thing.

Then he changed his mind at the last minute (literally — under 24 hours before the bill had to be vetoed or would automatically pass into law) under extreme pressure from the WI dairy processing lobby.

I couldn't help but notice that Farm Bureau is still opposed to the bill, although it seems some of the other corporate agri-business interest will stand on the sidelines this time because of all the public embarassment it caused them last time around.

I say we start organizing mass boycotts of every cheesemaker who opposes the raw milk bill this time. That is something we should have done last time around. I have a list of all the cheese makers who signed letters in opposition.

Bill Anderson
January 8, 2011

Violet, I couldn't help but notice this comment on the above link to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinal article. The commenter's screen name is "jimtherepublican"

"You know I'm so tired of this fight. It's clear the twigs & berries crowd is bound and determined to do this. It's sooooo stupid. I'm the grandson of a dairy farmer. My grandfather didn't buy a single item that wasn't needed. In the 30's & 40's money was very tight. Before the home had running water, he purchased a Sears & Roebuck home pasteurizer. No matter how "healthy" a farmer may think his animals are, they can have illnesses that are passed on to humans.

I think there should be state enforced wavers of liability signed by those insisting on consuming raw milk. Like smokers, if you're dumb enough to do it you should suffer the consequences. It's a risky lifestyle just like smoking or drinking. You should be rated as such. I had Listeria from raw milk as a child and almost died. Fortunately the doctors at my dad's base knew what it was and saved me. I think parents should be charged with child endangerment if they serve tainted milk."

Violet Willis
January 8, 2011

Bill . . . .

We have all been consuming raw milk for the last five years . . . .

My daughter, Brynne who just turned three is now beginning to read and has never been on antibiotics or had an ear infection in her life. She is the picture of health. My son . . . . well he is now 11 and is happy and healthy and very, very intelligent. We were told he would have severe problems after his birth trauma put him in the hospital as an infant for 8 weeks. No problems with cognitive ability and no problems with asthma . . . . I chalk it up to our pure diet, fresh air and living on a farm with dogs in the house. My daughter's health is due to raw milk as a mainstay in her diet.

I know my dairy farmers and they are great . . . .

No matter how "healthy" a farmer may think his animals are, they can have illnesses that are passed on to humans".

As a farmer . . . you know when your animals are sick. Fortunately we have been blessed with very healthy animals. I have had two cases of mastitis in my sheep over the past five years period. Those were my fault. I like to leave my babies with mom longer than I should . . . . but that has not comprimised my lambs or my ewes health and I have caught these problems right away.

You will only run into problems as a farmer when you buy animals regularly from auctions and sales barns. If you have a closed herd . . . .there is no need for feeling this way.

Like I have said before . . . . it is all about husbandry. Bill, if a barn stinks . . . so does your product.

If you are a cheesemaker . . . I am hoping you visit the farms where you buy your milk from to determine for yourself if the milk passes your test. You do not need regulations to tell you who has the best milk.

Kind regards,


Violet Willis
January 8, 2011

Okay . . . . So I am going to be a cheesemaker like Bill Anderson . . . .

I really want to make a fantastic cheddar. I am currently looking for a milk source.

This is what I look for . . .

A farmer who loves what they do.

Great herd of healthy Jersey cows.

No stink in the barn. Good eyes, alert ears, grass/hay only. Low coliform count monthly.

Milk that is silky with fat and slightly grassy in flavor.

Cheese that I make is great . . . .

No regulation . . . I determine if the milk is what I want for my cheese:)

Kind regards,


January 8, 2011

Sounds great, Violet. Seems likely no regulators will ever care or bother you, unless you mess-up and customers get sick. Then, like all food producers, you might be subject to an investigation through the county/state health department. But, given your care to details and hygiene, that probably will never happen. The commonality of raw milk farms subjected to the so-called "warpath" have had multiple positive pathogen tests and/or documented hygiene problems. There are numerous farms that in the same states that don't have these problems. What are they, like you, doing right?

Bill Marler
January 9, 2011

Say group, does anyone have the documents submitted by the raw milk supporters to Humboldt County?

Also, Mark, if you (or anyone on this site) have specific concerns about mistakes on, please send them along.

Mark McAfee
January 9, 2011

Bill Marler,

You are not a fascist. I did not call you a fascist. My comment was regarding a culture of fascism that permiates the regulatory control over our food in America. You are being used as a tool in that fascist and oppressive operation.

What I find biased and wrong about the Marler Real Milk Facts website is this:

There is literally no balance. No posting of the benefits of raw milk. No voice of the tens of thousands of passionate "normal people" that consume raw milk. Not one word of the benefits. Not one word.

Your website posts only derrogatory, inflamatory and negative information ( some even untrue ) about raw milk. The video clips should be offset by the information from websites like:

The voices of real moms that are over joyed by the medical aspects of raw milk and what it has done for their families health must be posted if your website is to be balanced and fair.

Answer this one question….the FDA claims that there is not any evidence of medical and nutritional benefit from drinking raw milk…yet the PARSIFAL study shows otherwise. Mike Payne at WIFFS claimed all sorts of things horrible about raw milk and summarily denied any benefits. If this is true….then why do the people experience something so entirely different and healing???? The FDA and Payne serve industry and the FDA agenda…not the consumer!!!

Why the quantum denial and summary dismissal of any value given to raw milk??? Mike Payne is the professional "GO-TO" PhD Raw Milk Hater. He is the Hired-Gun to do things that the CDFA and FDA can not ethically do or say. He even sent inflamatory emails to the Girls Scouts in Fresno trying to destroy the OPDC – Girls Scouts relationship.

There is an agenda operating, that is exactly why.

That agenda comes directly from the PMO and the NCIMS and the FDA. I saw it….I felt it… and I was told it directly when I attended the NCIMS inn 2008. That is the political reality.

The Humboldt report explicitly tells it all. It tells us that there is no balanced analysis of raw milk….it is one sided. All the positives are completely dismissed. Not one reference to any thing positive or any reference to a rational of why the markets are expanding. The FDA makes an expanded statement and denies all science brought forth by the raw milk community. Even peer reveiwed and published PUB MED citations are disregared as irrelevant. The FDA and Dr. Payne use non peer reviewed and non published reports in defense of their positions. The Humboldt report is a concentrated defensive action against raw milk and it is extremely biased.

When all of the top ten risky foods in America can be bought ( two of which are pasteurized cheeses and ice cream ) in all local Humboldt stores…yet not a drop of raw milk ( that is not on the top ten list ) can be purchaced…there is a political agenda.

Even the CDFA could not bring themselves to acknowledge the very high standards of the CA raw milk producers. Our volentary RAMP program as attacked by Dr. Payne. Dr. Payne insinuated that all dairies have safety priograms and test their milk and that CAFO operations have better bacteria counts when stating that Somatic cell counts were lower in CAFO operations. FYI…SCC are not pathogenic and are not bacteria. Dr. Payne is playing the reader for a fool. It is a fact that no dairies in CA except OPDC actually have a HACCP like RAMP plan in effect. It is true that some Creameries do have extensive food safety plans….but not dairies. Not a one of them. Yet Payne shreds OPDC for its safety plan and our ability to meet and exceed pasteurized milk standards with out pasteurizing. He leads the reader of his report to think and believe that all dairies in CA have very clean raw milk…and pass tests just like OPDC. This is a blatant lie. Payne is a political operative funded by FDA and Got Milk. It is clear as day….the funding is bragged about at the WIFFS website.

There are few university studies on raw milk because they cost millions and the grass roots movement and their producers do not have millions to spend on the FDA jerk arround science system that approves drugs that kill and denies that food has any relationship to health or prevention. Remember Avandia ( 80,000 deaths ) Celebrex and VIOXX….100,000 or more deaths. These are science based and FDA approved drugs!!!!???? Can you wake up and read this again!!! It is insane!!!

The consumers of raw milk rebel against the FDA and their "pill for every ill" sickness policies. The consumers of raw milk use raw milk to heal the immune system and effectively prevent inflamation. Breast milk studies done at UC Davis, and many other studies show this effect and show this value for raw milk…..EU studies also show this to be true.

This is a political environment and the facts do not matter. The only thing that matters is that the FDA maintains control and their bed partners in Big Ag, Monsanto, DFA, and Deans Foods continue to make fortunes as the "farmer serfs" that serve them commit suicide.

The FBI criminal investigations last year showed this to be true…..

That is why I say that fascism is upon us….when governents use the weight of their awesome power to protect corporations and oppress the people ( even with police and violence )….that is fascism.

You are being used by a fascist culture. If you want to convince us otherwise…you will tell the rest of the story of why raw milk is a growing trend and market. Tell the stories of real people and why they choose raw milk instead of pasteurized milk.

Tell that story in an open and honest fashion at your website and then you will be much less of a pawn in the FDA's hands.

Bill…you are a respected leader and wield tremendous power and influence. Perhaps the greatest gift you can give this nation….is the gift of truth.

Try telling the whole story and explaining why raw milk is re-emerging as a food. You must explain the risks ( you do that very well ) and also explain in real human terms the benefits of raw milk. This is not a joke…the moms defend their raw milk because it is dear to the health of their families. These moms do not trust the FDA and what it is has done to their kids. When you do this….then you will be embraced by a broader community. When you do this..America will be a little better and healthier place.

I apologize to you…if you thought that I said you are a fascist. You are not…

but…the people you work with in the FDA and corporations that use you as a tool are part of a fascist like culture. I stand behind that statement 100%.


Violet Willis
January 10, 2011

Lykke . . . . Oh you just wish I would mess up don't you:)

Not going to happen because I have a liscened and inspected store and our poultry are inspected by the state and if we choose to sell individual cuts of our lamb . . . . a USDA processing plant will be processing our meats:) As hard as it is for us farmers with all the regs . . . . we still do things by the book . . . .

As a regulator . . . I would hope you would want to help the farmers that pay your salary. From your comments . . . I think you are looking for outbreaks to be gainfully employed and if we mess up you still have a job. Our tax dollars at work everyone. . .

Round and round in circles . . . . I think you and your ilk will be out of jobs in say . . . about two years when all the money runs out.

Kind regards,