ACTION ALERT: FOOD BUYING CLUB RAID IN LOS ANGELES
RAWESOME Raw Food Buying Club in Venice Beach, California was raided for the second time today and James Stewart, club organizer, is in jail with $123K bond set. Victoria Bloch, a Weston A. Price chapter leader, and farmer Sharon Palmer were also arrested.
Mark McAfee of Organic Pastures Dairy is organizing a protest rally tomorrow morning at 8 a.m. at the courthouse where the raw milk advocates are to be arraigned. Southern California citizens are urged to join Mark McAfee and food blogger Ann Marie Michaels.
Arraignment is scheduled for tomorrow in Department 30, Los Angeles Superior Court, fifth floor, Criminal Justice Center, 210 W. Temple St., Los Angeles. Court opens at 8:30 a.m. The district attorneys office says it is likely they are to go before the judge during the morning session.
ACTION TO TAKE
The office of the L.A. District attorney is fielding calls regarding the case. For more information, or to express concern about the governments actions, call 213-974-3512.
Also please call the Los Angeles television stations – KCBS, KNBC, KTLA, KABC – and ask them to cover the protest rally.
Talking Points for speaking with elected official about this issue:
–Infringement of private property rights
–Misuse of state resources
–Denying citizens freedom of food choice
Ask your representatives in Congress to co-sponsor the Ron Paul bill lifting the ban on raw milk in interstate commerce; while not a factor in this case, it sends an important message about citizen access to raw milk.
See our publicists blog about the original raid:
Background on the case from Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund website:
News for October 22, 2010
Rawesome Foods raw milk co-op raid conducted by criminal elements of local, state and federal law enforcement
On June 30, 2010, a group of armed agents from local, state, federal and even the Canadian government illegally trespassed on private property and raided Rawesome Foods, a private food buying club in Venice, California. With guns drawn, these agents tore through the property stealing computers, raw dairy products and honey, all while holding some of the volunteer workers hostage for several hours. When the agents finally left, they took with them thousands of dollars in private property as well as the surveillance footage of their armed raid
News for July 4, 2010
What’s the FBI Doing in My Milk?
This past Wednesday, June 30th, the FBI in conjunction with the FDA raided Rawsome, a private membership food-buying club that has supplied my home and much of the Venice and Santa Monica community with super high-quality nutrient-dense foods for the past decade. The club, which opens on Wednesdays and Saturdays only, is extremely popular among raw-foodists and other citizens who choose to eat foods which are unprocessed and “as natural and organic as possible.” The general belief among this group is that these fresh foods are much better for the human body than pasteurized, irradiated, processed foods. The FDA does not share this opinion and has expressed its concern that many of these foods will be dangerous precisely because they are raw and untreated. For example, the FDA has expressed concerns about drinking unpasteurized milk products, which I have personally been drinking (and loving) for years. The FDA has now passed regulations against selling various raw foods, hence the
need for a private club, which legally can operate without a license.
In order to shop at Rawsome, one must first read and sign a document detailing the alleged dangers of consuming natural, unprocessed and unpasteurized food products. Once signed, a would-be patron will pay an annual membership fee to gain the right to shop at the club. The shopping experience is reasonably run of the mill. Many of the foods sold at Rawsome – fruits, vegetables, nuts – can also be found at most any other market. The difference at Rawsome is that the quality is often better as is the possibility of finding heirloom varieties of one’s favorite produce. Regardless, a raid was conducted yesterday and Rawsome has been shut down allegedly for operating without a license – a license that is not legally required for them to operate their private club.
The link to our press release on the Rawesome raid is:
*** The Protest Rally is planned for 8:00am Thursday August 4 ***
Media Contact: Kimberly Hartke, publicist
Weston A Price Foundation
703-860-2711, cell 703-675-5557, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ann Marie Michaels, Los Angeles rally media contact