I don’t know if the video I just watched-entitled “Amish Smugglers’ Shady Milk Run”–was intended to be funny, but I couldn’t help but chuckle. Technically, I guess you do call someone who brings in product to sell in an area where it is illegal a “smuggler”. But the term is such a loaded one. The […]
Continue Reading “Shadowy” Amish raw milk smugglers
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First, the link did not work and I could not get the video. A page came up saying there was a problem.
Now to my opinion on the raw milk issue. Raw milk is better for you. Where the problem might come in is if the owner doesn’t keep the animals clean.
The reason for possible stomach problems is only because our systems are no longer used to the good stuff. We are used to watered down, chemical ladden garbage the government and especially big companies want us to think is good when it is not.
Anything, in my opinion, that is natural and not processed is better for you. After all, they did not have a means to process foods during biblical times and Methusela lived to be 965!! LOL
The hormones and antibiotics that big companies put into the cows to keep them healthy in an unhealthy enviroment actually get into us through the milk that is produced. One of the many reasons there are diseases today that are antibiotic resistant is because we have over dosed our own bodies by what goes into our food, milk, etc that winds up in our systems.
If I could buy raw milk here that would be all we would drink. Ask them to “smuggle” some to me, I’ll drink it with no worries!!
It is interesting that our government subsidizes sugar and tobacco farmers, the latter leading to multiplied thousands of deaths and yet, according to their own statistics, only two deaths in a decade could be attributed to problems with raw milk. I understand that many people would not want to risk even such small odds, but where does common sense and informed choice fit in? In my growing-up years, our family drank only raw milk from a herd that was regularly tested. Give the consumer a choice. My 2 cents for the day. Raw Rich Stevick
Using the FDAs logic they should be shutting down the entire industrial food system which has caused way more than 2 deaths over a 10 year period. (think spinach, peanut butter, hamburger….)
We’ve had a couple of cases here in Springfield, MO where the health department has gone after local dairy farmers who were selling raw milk in parking lots. It is not legal to sell raw milk in stores, but a person can pay for milk ahead of time and then the farmer can deliver the milk to the people who have pre-paid for it, usually in a parking lot or farmer’s market. I bought milk from a man who tried to get around the law by stating that we were buying a “share” of a cow, so we were entitled to a gallon of that cow’s milk. Unfortunately the health department did not see it this way and shut him down. In another case, two young daughters of a farmer offered to sell milk that had not been picked up to an undercover agent of the health department. The case finally went to court last month and the farmer was cleared of the charge of illegal milk sales.
To answer your questions, yes, I think we should be able to buy raw milk. I see no problem if the farmer is willing to work with the health department and allow inspections of their facilities before they can sell to the public. I only bought raw milk once last year but have talked to people who drink it regularly and have experienced no problems. I don’t have enough experience with raw milk to give you advice on whether to bring your own jar–hopefully someone else can help you there.
Thanks for your interesting posts!
Okay , now I watched the video….. Erik, it was funny! I think the announcers were being melodramatic on purpose.
What’s not funny is that we have this ridiculous law, which to me the worst part is squeezing people out of a chosen lifestyle that seems fairly wholesome while protecting a food system that abuses animals and people —- it’s all about money I guess.
Rich, I agree, it should be up to the consumer to use common sense and make their own choice. But little by little the government has taken control of the food supply by ways of regulations. That is why the small time farmer is dying off and being taken over by big companies like Monsanto.
I believe that our food source is contaminated on purpose. After all, its big business if we are sick from the food, it gives the entire health care industry a boost, from doctors, to hospitals and even insurance companies.
I know, some of you will think I am a conspiricy nut,,, that’s fine,,, but look around you,,, really think about it.
God didn’t have all this processing, boiling, homoginizing, pasturizing, etc. We really don’t need it if we know where our food is coming from and how it is handled. I don’t dump chemicals on my garden and when I eat veges strictly that I have grown, I feel much better. Same with meats,,, I buy from a guy who raises the animals, butchers them himself and I know they are raised without chemicals and are handled in a clean manner. What a difference in the taste of the food even!!
Well I still can’t get the video but I did get to read the article. Erik, do you think anyone in Arthur would sell me raw milk?? I would buy it in a heartbeat if I could find someone to sell it to me.
Hi Erik, I really enjoy your website. I think this is the first time I have posted. We live in VA, where raw milk is legal only through herdshares, which are not terribly common. We benefit from a set up similar to the one mentioned in the video. Not only does it provide access to raw milk, but many other wonderful, nutritious meat and dairy products. The food we get through this set up is so important to our family, I’m sure we would drive the three and a half hours it takes to get to the farm on a regular basis to purchase food, even if it was no longer delivered to a neighborhood near where we live.
Amish raw milk in Arthur Illinois?
Alice, good question, it looks like on-farm sales are legal in Illinois. There is a state-by-state map at this site: http://www.realmilk.com/happening.html
I’m not sure why you can’t get the video; if you search “raw milk thedaily.com” you should be able to find it.
I can’t specifically remember raw milk sellers, but if the map is correct I’m guessing you might be able to rustle up some of the raw stuff down in Arthur.
Naomi, glad to hear from you! From the map I mentioned above, it looks like herd shares are permitted in about 6 states. Interesting arrangement.
I think “Raw Rich” and Betsy make good points above. I wonder how many deaths have been attributable to, say, energy drinks over the same period?
And Betsy that was kind of my suspicion, that he was being humorous. The video came from a new news outlet called The Daily. I haven’t read them yet to know their style, but maybe they mix in a bit more humor than the average news site. The guy’s voice really cracked me up.
My wife and her 9 siblings lived on a dairy farm and were brought up on raw milk. All are very healthy and sickness is very rare in the family. I’m sure there could be some issues, so one should still be careful.
Her dad had a truck and picked up raw milk from all the Amish dairies in the area and delivered it to the local milk processing dairy. Naturally they tested and processed the milk before reselling. I remembered the dairy sometimes would reject milk in the spring for tasting too grassy. Guess they expected the Amish to feed the cows more grain?
I got the video and was very interested. When I was a kid all milk was what we call raw milk today. It was the only kind of milk we had and I lived through it. You know what I think is funny is why with all the Dairy Farms we have in New York State are they importing it from Pennsylvania. LOL
Marilyn in New York
I had checked this site a few years ago but not been back since. A few years ago, raw milk in Illinois was illegal, period. Glad to see we can buy it from the farms now. You bet I will be looking for a farmer to sell me raw milk. It is so much better for you in my opinion.
I’ll head off to that site and see if I can get the video there. Now sure why it will not load for me.
We used to get raw milk from the health food store when I was a kid. It even had the layer of cream on the top! We’d take the cream off and make butter and ice cream!! No one in the family ever got sick from it although I am lactose intolerant and couldn’t drink it anyway.
I love your blog and have been reading for awhile but this is the first time I’ve posted a reply. We just moved from California to Indiana and while in CA purchased raw milk from the stores and at farmer’s markets. It was absolutely superior to any other milk I’ve ever had. Also, we all seemed to get sick less frequently when drinking local raw milk. Anyone in the Fort Wayne, IN area know where we might be able to get some? We’re missing raw milk!
I mean where can we get some legally?
Raw milk is very good for your digestive system. My family of 7 grew up on raw milk and its products, like many in my distant family and we are healthy and never occurred to us to be sick from it. I’m with Alice on that one definitely. We are being brainwash for sure.
For those who like the raw.
I used to drink raw milk as a child on my uncle’s farm. That was when I parents discovered my lactos eintolerence, as the milk sugar isn’t changed at all in raw milk. But we loved it, my parents grew up on it; never a problem. Raw milk cannot be sold or even given away in Canada. My solution is to get my own goats. I tolerate goats’ milk.
I second (third and fourth) everything Alice said! Very good points Alice! I have always thought our nation needs to get back to more farming or having more self-sufficient people:-)
I love raw milk and do notice a difference when I drink it. In Washington state, the dairies are regulated and we can buy it in certain stores, however it is crazy expensive ($12/gal from one dairy, $5/half-gal from another) so I’m not able to buy it all the time. I also get it from my local whole foods co-op which is in the next town over from mine in the downtown area and I don’t always feel like driving over there JUST to buy milk. SO, I usually opt for organic milk. Unfortunately, it is a pasturized product, but at least they should not be using any hormones on the lovely moo ladies.
It makes no sense to me that raw milk is all of a sudden bad for you. It it was so horrible, wouldn’t more of the population have died off from drinking it? My dad remembers drinking the warm milk right after his grandpa had milked the cows! If my dad and aunt survived raw milk, so can I:-)
p.s. Erik, the video was hilarious! Glad we in WA don’t have to worry about the raw milk smuggling racket! LOL!!
Hey folks…..i got in alittle early from work, not feeling too well. and thought id say hello. When i was in ohio i did have a glass of milk from a Amish farmer, im just not sure if it was pasturized or not. He and his family still milked cows by hand, and he told me he was one of the very few left at that time who still did. I have a picture somewhere of me milking one of his cows, the first for me. All i can say is i really hope hes still not milking by hand any more, that was work trying to get even a dropolks…. just got back alittle .I also remember his kitchen very well, the reason for that is he still had a old hand pump running through his floor onto his sink area.
And when i left his familys farm i bought 2 milk cans and painted them, which im looking at one of them right now, while the other is in the living room.Anyone remember those old ford n-tractors, ive posted a story writen by myself on the ford model 8n.
please take a few mins to stop by and read and comment on it. I think considering im hardly the writer, it came out fairly well even for me. ill be posting more pictures this week as well, along with more of the Amish area in Lebanon county.
Raw milk from Amish farms in Allen, Adams County Indiana
Celeste glad you found us on here, and hope your move has gone well. In Fort Wayne you are actually surrounded by Amish with big communities to the north and south.
The Allen County settlement to the north has few farms. The Adams Co group to the south should have more. I am not sure on the laws, though by the map it looks like Indiana might be a “herd share” state. Anyone here that does raw milk in Indiana that might advise?
Celeste, go to realmilk.com and poke around they have listings there where you can find places to buy raw milk.
Christina,, thank you,,, but it would probably be wise to not get me started on our government and big corporations, LOL. It does not matter who is in the white house the agenda is the same, LOL
And really its not all of a sudden that raw milk is suppose to be bad for you, it started a long time ago. First it had to be pateurized, then homodginized, then they deicded to add vitamin D because they realized when they boiled it to death they killed the natural vitamin D that is in milk.
The big corporate farmers got greedy and started over crowding the animals, which led to less than sanitary conditions, less natural grass feed and more hormones and antibiotics to keep these animals being raised in less than natural conditions alive. But that of course gave an less than quality product, so now we have to do something to fix the poor quality product.
And this vicious cycle doesn’t just happen to our milk, it happens to every single food product which is commercially produced.
For the government to say raw milk is really good for you, they would have to say that commercially produced and tampered with milk is not good for you. And let’s face it, big corporations are never going to allow that.
I better shut up cause I feel my temper starting to get the better of me thinking about how the American public is being slowly killed by the food chain and corporate America, LOL.
Dena, Magdalena, if I were lactose intolerant, I don’t know what I’d do.
Cheese, cereal, ice cream…How do you survive?
Christina, 12 bucks is steep! In the video I seem to remember the “street price” in NYC being about 6 bucks a pop, even with the transport from Lancaster. Sounds like someone is getting their cut in Washington state.
Richard I can’t imagine milking by hand. Lot of work. The one time I tried the cow didn’t like me too much.
Yes, farm sales are legal in Missouri. here is a link to a newspaper article which discusses the case I mentioned in more detail:
The farm family in this article has won the local court case, but they are still facing charges filed by the State Attorney General. Undercover agents, state charges–wow, you’d think they were selling dope!
The only time I had raw milk was when I was visiting a pen-pal in France. Her family were farmers..and we were literally drinking the milk that the cow gave up less an hour before. It was really good and I’m still alive and healthy. So I definitely didn’t suffer any ill affects 🙂 🙂 I think that people should have the right to raw milk products, if that’s what they want. That’s just my opinion 🙂 🙂 Oh, I saw the chart posted earlier about the state of raw dairy product sales in various states. I’m glad that it’s legal here in Oregon to purchase from a farm!! Greetings from Oregon, Heather 🙂
Sorry for the break-up in my post, for some reason before it wouldn’t accept my whole post, and i didnt post everything that was in it. It was on the long side, so who knows. Yes your right Erik about milking by hand being tough, i really dont know how he and his family did it. Remember back in the day when we used to drink milk with dinner, now with so many drinks available you dont seem to see that much anymore.
Talking about milk makes me want to run over to that dairy that i posted about on here, since its only up the road and i try to buy my milk there. i may very well try and do alittle story about them on the blog. as ive said if you like older tractors check my site out, you may like the short story that ive just posted. richard. www.amishstorys.com
I totally agree with you that the moderator of “Shadowy Amish Raw Milk Smugglers” sounded very “shady”. When I stayed at an Amish dairy farm in Lancaster, PA, I was given a complete tour of the barn and their milking techniques. I would have to say that the barn, milking equipment and processing vats were spotless and the milk was picked up by a large tanker very early in the morning from a well known dairy company. I will admit that I did not try the raw milk as I was not sure it had gone thru the “past your eyes” process.
Glad to hear you are going to Lancaster! I am planning on going down for the Bart Amish Mud Sale on March 5th.
one question no one has asked………..
OF THE NEARLY 300,000 AMISH CURRENTLY ON THE PLANET,
AND AN UNKNOWN NUMBER FROM PREVIOUS GENERATIONS.
HOW MANY AMISH FOLK ARE/WERE MADE ILL BY RAW MILK?
I drink the stuff daily. I go down to the neighbor, a “Wenger” Mennonite, and dip it straight from his bulk tank. $2/gallon, and that is a bit higher than the usual $1.50 from some of the others. Now if you go to the guys who advertise raw milk for sale, it goes for $3-4/gallon. As I understand it, here in PA you can sell it straight from the farm, but if you advertise, then you fall into all kinds of regulations.
The whole thing seems to be, from my standpoint, a way for the middle man to make some $$. That said, if milk isnt taken care of properly it can be a source of sickness. So some sort of regulation is probably good, just to keep everyone on their toes.
Go to Das Nolt Haus (12530 Cuba Road, Grabill IN) on Friday nights and Saturday nights, 4-8 PM, ask to speak with David, Barbara or Toby, tell them I sent you (Dr. Adams, the Psychologist) and ask them for recommendations for dealers in Raw Milk. If anyone knows, they will.
They may be taken aback by your prescient knowledge about who they are and what they do, but they will be helpful, after collecting their thoughts. While there, enjoy a dinner in the restaurant – ten dollars gets you a great albeit small buffet meal, with extra costs for soda and dessert. Two can eat cheaply for just under 30 dollars. And they are very open to the English.
These folks are the sweetest people – Swiss Amish – and they were very good friends of mine when I was interning in IN over the 2007-2008 year.
We drank raw milk for over 20 years thanks to a small dairy farmer (milking the old style way…a bucket and hands)that lived nearby. It was great, our bones are thick, and we never got sick once. We paid from 35 cents to 50 cents a gallon…..and we made butter from the cream on the top. It was the best butter ever…..deep yellow and great for baking, cooking, and for popcorn. I’ve seen the butter in only once since in an Amish country store. The FDA is a stooge for the large dairy concerns….that’s all!
All the milk I drank for the first twenty plus years was raw milk. In times past cows did sometimes transmit brucellosis, a disease that caused undulant fever in humans. Testing dairy cattle has reduced the incidence greatly. The disease is still present in some wild and domestic animals.(Check out brucellosis on Wikipedia).
In spite of the “danger,” many people including my mother who is now 97 have consumed raw milk without incident all their lives. However, I would not advise anyone that it is totally risk free.
You know I was born Amish, grew up on “raw milk” and lived through it, and I do not see how any government can say I have to drink milk that has chemicals in it. I do, but only cause I have no farm myself, but for those that have a farm, and a cow, I would say, drink that milk, it is not bad for you! But if you do not take care of your equipment, then yes, of course it could hurt you, but not just the milk itself.
Pasteurized, and homogenized milk is a process. It does not add chemical’s. They do add vitamin’s to the milk. Some milk has other things added. I checked my milk, and the only thing added is vitamin’s. I also think you should be able to buy raw milk.I milked cow’s when i was growing up and drank raw milk. I would just as soon drink store bought. I’am not going to loose sleep about the conspiracy theory. Marcus Yoder London,Ohio
Taste of raw milk vs. pasteurized
One thing I wonder if anyone can comment on is the taste. Does raw milk taste different?
I realize the raw stuff would be “full-fat”, so would be creamier than 2% store bought milk. But I wonder how it compares taste-wise to pasteurized/homogenized whole milk, for instance.
Also, my one stipulation when I drink the raw stuff is that it be in the fridge/tank long enough to cool down. “Cow-temperature” milk, no thank you 🙂
I have to drink raw milk as I am lactose intolerant. Raw milk contains lactase which makes it more digestible. My older son is also LI and he has no trouble with raw milk.
The original process of sterilization came about because of the milk that was produced where cows were eating the swill left over from Whiskey production. I personally believe that the bacteria that are present in raw milk will cause some symptoms in some people, but that you become ‘inoculated’ against them and subsequently stronger. It has been shown that children who grow up on farms have stronger immune systems and fewer allergies. Could it be because they are exposed to various pathogens naturally?
Here’s a link to an article about the early milk industry
oops! I forgot to mention that raw milk doesn’t “go bad’, like pasteurized milk does. It just ferments and eventually turns into cream cheese or cottage cheese.
Can’t do that with pasteurized milk can you?
Eric, you asked about taste, and while I understand the question, not all milk is the same, IE if you get milk from a Jersey cow (the brown ones) your milk will be better, but those cows do not get as much milk as the black and white ones (Holsteins) and most large dairies use the ones that give more milk cause they need a large amount of milk to pay the bills, they do not get paid as well for the Jersey cow as they would if they have a lot of Holsteins.
When we were growing up we had 1 or 2 Jerseys, we were not a milk-producing farm, since Dad worked in a sawmill.
(I was Swartzentruber Amish)
I don’t generally like to mention another blog by name on the blog I am currently posting in. Some people have no issue with this and that is oklay. I just generally like to stay away from it.
Regardless there is an ongoing (about 3 or 4 months in duration now) discussion about raw milk on a blog called Draft Animal Power where I post from time to time. Here is link or at least an address to that discussion: http://www.draftanimalpower.com/showthread.php?t=3586
If it won’t link, just copy and paste into your browser.
There are several links to other sites in that thread, but the most concise is this one:
Good reading, and accurate too, at least from what I learned in a Dairy Science class in college some 35 years ago.
I am NOT a conspiracy theorist, nor a anti-corporate, anti-capitalist or any other kind of anti-anything really. However this excerpt (if true) from the above mentioned thread on DAP is distrubing.
“Concerning insurance and raw milk retailers…Farm Family is in the process of dropping coverage for raw milk. Producers who retail raw milk,here in Connecticut, are shopping for a high risk insurer and working as a group… Don’t know yet what cost will be. As a producer I’ve known this was coming for some time because my agent and I talk. But two days ago one of the store owners where I sell, (we are allowed retail sales in all stores…we are fortunate) called to say that they would not be able to sell my milk because his insurer, Farm Family, would not cover it. His renewal comes in March and that is when the exclusion takes place, at renewal. Mine happens in August and so far the store owner is ok with me providing a certificate of insurance.
Today I received a call from another store saying they will not be able to continue selling my milk. Nationwide, their insurer, had come to inspect at renewal and told them that they would not renewal if raw milk was offered for sale at the store. The idea of certificate was offered but rejected. So no more sales there until I figure out a different way.
At least in Connecticut Farm Family is not the insurer for Farm Bureau, Nationwide is…
I talked with Pete Kennedy at the Weston Price group and he is beginning to receive calls from raw milk cheese producers and on farm poultry processors with the same situation.
Are others out there facing this situation…it would be great to work together….Thanks”
Old Kat, it is said to say this but the big corporations do want to put the little guy out of business and they will do whatever it takes to do it. Including putting pressure on insurance companies and small stores. I have never called myself a conspiricy theorist but I have read way too much to believe otherwise. Its happening in many industries. We all need to get involved and fight back.
Erik,,, yes there is a huge difference in taste in my opinion. I grew up on raw milk and it took a lot for me to make the change over. I hate store bought milk to this day and would much rather have raw milk.
OldKat that is interesting position to be in… I am in Ohio where we can only have shares in herds.
Also wanted to mention that while I personally hated my brother’s goat milk, since he did not have it refrigerated cold enough, I know of one farm that was selling their goat milk to Hershey’s for candy bars, which was interesting since they had to ship it twice a week to PA from Ohio.
I have a lot of friends who are drinking soy milk and other kinds of milk,,,and some would not buy store bought milk, at any costs, because of the preservatives in it.
Alice , I know of Amish and Mennonites in Arthur area,,and am pretty sure they’d let you buy their milk , from them
for more info, e-mail or call me.
OK, thanks Nelson!! I’ll send you off an email, I think I still have your email addy. Was doing a clean out of my email address book the other day and deleted a few more than I should have, LOL.
Raw vs. pasteurized milk--blind taste test?
Joseph good point, I know the Jersey milk is creamier but it’s a lower-producing cow. I wonder though if you stacked up two glasses of milk from the same cow in a blind taste test, one raw, the other pasteurized and homogenized, if it would be easy to tell the difference. Wonder if anyone’s tried that.
Old Kat no worries about sharing, sounds like an interesting discussion.
Mary I just learned a bit about how cream cheese was made this morning as I ate 4 English muffins covered with the stuff. I do enjoy cream cheese.
A Raw Milk Vacation Tour for Christina and other raw milk aficianados: When my wife and I were teaching in New Zealand last fall, we found a farm just down the road from our campus in Kaikoura that would sell raw milk to us for about 75 cents per liter with your own container. Think about this, Christina: take a trip to this milk-rich, lovely vacation land of New Zealand, and right before you leave, stop by a little dairy farm with two containers that would hold 50 lbs each of milk (you will need to have brought all of your personal possessions by carry-on). When you get back to the U.S., go to Washington State and sell your milk on a street corner in Seattle or Tacoma for $11.95 per gallon. With the profits from your sales, you should be able to pay a lot towards your airline tickets. One caveat: since you must declare all of your foreign purchases, you will need to have a convincing speech ready to explain your 100 pounds of milk. Note: In case this site is being surveyed by the TSA folk, I am just kidding, but it’s fun to imagine your scenario, Christiana. Rich Stevick
I love raw milk and I drink it all the time at my sister’s whose husband is a dairy farmer. They always have the milk raw and they have never gotten ill from it. According to my brother in law however he said that you get used to the bacteria of your own milk but it is not a guarantee that an outsider will not react to them although if the milk is tested like his is the risk in not very high as they throw away milk with too high bacteria content.
Here you cannot sell raw milk legally and I would really like to see this changed as it is superior to pasteurized and homogenized milk when it comes to taste. There could be a system of testing raw milk before selling it or the farmer being able to sell it with a disclaimer but not so in Sweden. It is easy to forbid I guess.