FDA Concedes Raw Milk Across State Lines OK for Personal Consumption

The Weston A. Price Foundation Kimberly Hartke, Publicist
For Immediate Release 703-860-2711, cell 703-675-5557



But continues to broadcast misinformation about unpasteurized dairy


Washington, DC ( November 17, 2011)—In a statement issued on November 1, concurrent with a raw milk freedom rally held outside FDA headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland, the agency conceded that it “has never taken, nor does it intend to take, enforcement action against an individual who purchased and transported raw milk across state lines solely for his or her own personal consumption” [www.fda.gov/Food/FoodSafety/Product-SpecificInformation/MilkSafety/ucm277854.htm].  This statement reverses FDA’s prior position in which the agency reserved the option of taking action against individual consumers crossing state lines with raw milk. Federal regulation 21 CFR § 1240.61 prohibits the introduction of raw milk for human consumption into interstate commerce.


A caravan of moms brought raw milk across state lines on November 1 and served it to rally participants in front of FDA headquarters.


“Unfortunately, FDA’s announcement allowing individuals to transport raw milk across state lines is filled with the same misinformation that the agency has spread in the past,” says Sally Fallon Morell, president of the Weston A. Price Foundation, an organization that sponsors A Campaign for Real Milk, aimed at universal access to clean raw milk. “FDA continues to insist that raw milk is dangerous, when even the agency’s own exaggerated list of outbreaks shows that raw milk is safer than other foods.”


“FDA lists outbreaks associated with raw cheese, produced in less than sanitary conditions, as ‘outbreaks caused by raw milk,’ thereby inflating the number of illnesses associated with raw milk,” says Fallon Morell. “The actual number of illnesses associated (but not necessarily proved) with raw milk is about forty-two per year, which makes raw milk a very safe food given the large number of raw milk consumers.  No deaths have been associated with raw milk during the past twelve years, but three people have died from tainted pasteurized milk.”


FDA insists that raw milk drinkers constitute less than 1 percent of the population. Yet a 2007 government survey found that about 3 percent of the population consumes raw milk, or about nine million people.  This number is likely to be higher today as raw milk consumption is growing rapidly. Even in the state of Maryland, where raw milk sales are illegal, over 3 percent of respondents stated that they drank raw milk.  “This milk is coming from Pennsylvania, where raw milk sales are legal,” says Pete Kennedy, president of the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund, “to the great detriment of Maryland farmers.”  According to Kennedy, hundreds of thousands of dollars of farm sales each year flow from Maryland to Pennsylvania.


The Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund is currently representing citizens challenging the interstate ban on raw milk in an Iowa federal district court .


According to Fallon Morell, “FDA continues to insist that no science exists to substantiate the nutritional and health benefits of raw milk, yet we now have five European studies, published in peer reviewed journals, showing that raw milk provides powerful protection against asthma and allergies. And there is copious scientific research showing that pasteurization of milk denatures and diminishes the effectiveness of enzymes and vitamins in the milk.”


Moreover, raw milk is designed to build the immune system—the components that do this are denatured by the heat process of pasteurization.  FDA claims that the elderly, the immune-compromised, children and pregnant women especially should avoid raw milk. “These are the very people who need it the most,” says Fallon Morell.


The Weston A. Price Foundation is a nutrition education non-profit with 550 local chapters worldwide, and close to 13,000 members. The organization works to educate the public about the health benefits of unprocessed milk from grass-based dairies through its Campaign for Real Milk, http://realmilk.com.


CONTACT: Kimberly Hartke, press@westonaprice.org, 703-860-2711, cell 703-675-5557

Kimberly Hartke is the publicist for the Weston A. Price Foundation. Her public relations company, Hartke Communications specializes in health and wellness clients. To book a nutrition education expert, contact Kimberly via, press@westonaprice.org.

9 Responses to FDA Concedes Raw Milk Across State Lines OK for Personal Consumption

  1. Angie Foster says:

    We made the switch to raw milk 4 years ago and have never looked back. Our entire family has benefitted from the change. My infant daughter at the time struggled with formula when I was no longer able to breastfeed at 8 months, she lost weight, became guant, and developed respitory illnesses that landed us in the ER several times. After visiting specialist after specialist with no avail, my father told me to go find a cow because that is what they did for me when I had similar issues(ironically I grew up in Iowa at the time, not sure what the law stated back then). The transformation was anything but miraculous. Not only did she gain weight and the mysterious “allergies” and illness go away, but my son’s eczema disappeared and my husbands seasonal allergies have improved dramatically. We currently reside in Nebraksa and would like to move back to Iowa to be closer to family, but I’m not willing to give up my “wonder milk”. I hope that Iowa will lift the ban so we can be reuinited with family once again.

  2. Wolverine says:

    I am an intestinal transplant survivor who has been drinking raw milk ever since my transplant. Even though I am on immunosuppressant medication, I have had no infections since consuming raw milk. The surgeons told me that all intestinal transplant patient become lactose intolerant after surgery and they were right, at least as far as pasteurized milk is concerned. I cannot tolerate pasteurized dairy since my transplant. Something in the pasteurized dairy causes severe diarrhea, but I have no issues with raw milk. If it weren’t for raw dairy, I would be impossible for me to consume any dairy at all.

    I have had less complications than any of the other intestinal recipients since consuming raw dairy and have had no rejection issues. There is a dramatic difference in how my transplanted organs respond to pasteurized dairy as compared to raw.

  3. Isabel says:

    So why can’t Organic Pastures (a CA supplier) ship their raw milk out of state? I would think that now this has passed they could sell out of state again.

  4. Warren Jones says:

    Here in Maryland

    I live in Maryland and I live right next to a dairy farm but they will not give me raw milk. The owner once told me he would rather be caught with marijuana than raw milk in his car. That goes to show how wasteful government resources are allocated and the punishment certainly not fitting the crime. Anyways, throughout Maryland there are supply chains coming from Pennsylvania down through Delaware into Maryland. It would be much better if we could just buy it locally…

    Everyone should read that book to learn more about the politics that is raw milk and you will understand why things are how they are today.

  5. Kimpeer Morris says:

    When did we become a country that allows our government to tell us what to eat, what to drink, or how to live our lives. I know what is best for me no one else. I was given the right by God. I think the main reason they are against raw milk and locally grown food is money. Farmers in states where raw milk is illegal to buy are forced to sell to dairy company that is paying them little to nothing for their milk which they sale at double or triple the price at the grocery stores. If farmers can sell their milk on their own to people who want it the farmer and the consumer set the price, and the dairy companies’ profits are cut that is what the laws are all about crony capitalism period.

  6. Amy West says:


    Angie Foster, Your story is wonderful! I’ve got an idea that could get you packing your bags this year.

    We got ourselves some silly goats for daily fresh milk. They are such FUN animals and easy & inexpensive to keep. I wonder if you could move near family on a small property zoned to allow a goat or two or seven (they are addictive, besides, we can raise a beef calf on goat milk for freezer or profit in selling weaned calves). I was amazed at how yummy my first glass of goat milk at a friend’s house tasted. She gave me some cake and I HAD to have milk with it and reluctantly drank the only kind she had. YUM! Goat milk is much closer to human milk than cow milk, no offense to cows. And goat’s milk is naturally homogenized (smaller fat globules), though it’s harder to make butter and other cream products with goat’s milk. I want to get a water buffalo for butter (double the cream as typical cow milk) and ice cream and cheese, etc. We have 10 acres, a lot of it quite wet. A goat makes what we can use. A cow would make too much for us, even a miniature breed. They are harder to breed I hear too. I don’t believe in artificial insemination for the most part. A friend buys a young male goat to raise for meat and has him breed her does before he goes in the freezer. They even process the meat themselves. We’re trying that this year. Taking does to another farm in the right timing can be a hassle. Another thing about the typical dairy cow…I heard the super high producing breeds most dairies use, even without any medications or hormones added, the cow overproduces hormones and it ends up in the milk, causing problems for children in experiencing early puberty, like 8 or 9 (my niece was 9 and chest developed with periods and all-she looked like a really short 15 year old). Cows weren’t designed to eat anything but grass, and I wonder about goats eating grains too. I’m researching a cheaper, more natural goat feed. Just because they seem to like what they are fed is not enough to judge what they SHOULD eat for best health and product. Old fashioned Jersey cows are best to get raw milk from if you can’t have your own cow or goat. You can milk your own dairy goat for 1 to 2 gallons of milk a day, either once or twice a day. Cows must be twice a day. You can own a dairy goat and have a life too. I’m sure you could find a friend or family member to milk if you are away from home now and then. It’s not hard. I hand milk in a bucket and use paper towels to wash her udder and filter the milk. You can store it in canning jars and freeze it too. Most people don’t like milking in the coldest part of winter. I did it anyway because I didn’t have enough to freeze and just couldn’t go back to store milk. Three of us don’t handle store milk well. I used to. Just don’t get a goat with Toggenburg blood. That milk is stronger flavored, excellent for cheese making though. Our newest goat is a LaMancha/Nubian cross. Read all you can. Showing 4-H animals at the fair is likely to add sickness and expense to owning livestock, so we haven’t risked that yet, except with poultry. So, if this brings excitement and a hopeful possibility to your family, let me know. TheWestFarmers@Yahoo.com

  7. Jo says:

    would like to get newsletter, thanks

  8. Annie says:


    I really liked this article and its comments. One comment in particular was very compelling. I assumed the plus sign meant AGREE, the minus sign meant disagree, & wondered about the exclamation point. I decided it either meant REALLY AGREE or REPLY to comment. So I tapped it after the plus sign. Then a window appeared saying that post had been reported. Not my intention!!!
    Excellent article & comments. Thanks!

  9. Wayne Workman says:

    So… mothers who breast feed their children are still in the cross hairs of the FDA because their raw milk isn’t “SOLELY” for their own personal consumption. What is this country coming to?

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