The matter of Amos Miller, an Amish organic farmer in Lancaster County who has clashed with the government for years over the sale of raw milk products, is making headlines again.
Miller’s troubles date to 2015, when the government alleged that a listeria illness which sickened two and killed one person had its source in milk from Miller’s farm. Miller in turn objected, claiming the person who died had a pre-existing condition, and that his milk was not even proven to have caused the illness.
Miller draws support from the thousands of members of his “buyer’s club” who purchase his raw dairy products. The farmer casts his struggle with the government as “tak[ing] a stand to preserve our culture”. There is a long history, and you can get a summary here.
Raid on Miller’s Organic Farm
Miller is back in the news due, in part, to his sale of a holiday favorite: Egg nog (among other raw products). Two cases of a foodborne pathogen known in short as STEC (Shiga toxin producing E.Coli) have been linked to Miller’s products.
The cases appeared in minors who had consumed Miller’s products in New York and Michigan. Officials served a search warrant at Miller’s farm on Thursday:
BIRD IN HAND, Pa. (WHTM) -A Lancaster County farm is under investigation in connection to an out of state reported food borne illnesses, according to the state’s Department of Agriculture.
Pennsylvania State Department of Agriculture officials and State Police were at Miller’s Organic Farm, located at 648 Mill Creek Road in Bird In Hand, serving a search warrant Thursday.
The Department of Agriculture says investigators were looking for illegal raw milk and products like eggnog at the farm.
There were two reported cases of the foodborne pathogen “STEC – Shiga toxin producing E.Coli” in December in minors, according to the Agriculture Department.
Ground beef and “raw” eggnog from Miller’s farm was tested after one of the underage people in New York consumed it, and both products were positive for STEC. In Michigan, there was another report from a minor who tested positive for STEC and that they had raw milk, and other milk, eggs, cheese and meat products that were from Miller’s Farm, the Agriculture Department says.
Miller’s supporters have come out strong for him following this latest case, Lancaster Online reports. Over $56,000 had been raised for the Amishman a day after the raid, according to the article.
The GiveSendGo campaign on Miller’s behalf states that following the seizure of some of his goods, “the remaining products they are forbidding Amos from selling, effectively ending his business until further notice.”
I just checked the campaign page, and that number is now up to over $74,000. Donations appear to still be flowing in rapidly.