FDA Escalates War Against Amish Dairy Farmers
Kinzers PA – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) apparent war on Amish raw
dairy farmers escalated on December 6 when the agency filed a “motion for summary judgment,” with Pennsylvania judge Lawrence Stengler. The motion requests a permanent injunction against dairy farmer Dan Allgyer selling fresh milk out of state. FDA asserts that regulation 21 CFR §1240.61 criminalizes any sale of milk intended to cross state lines.
After a two-year expensive, exhaustive undercover operation, including multiple armed raids on
Allgyer’s farm, FDA agents and a team of ten federal lawyers amassed over two hundred and
seventy-six pages of evidence allegedly proving what Allgyer openly admits, that he is selling
fresh (raw, unpasteurized) milk to customers who knowingly carry the milk across state lines.
Thousands of Maryland customers who have been buying from Allgyer for years were the main
focus for evidence during the investigation. In spite of the FDA raids and injunction filing,
Allgyer has continued to support his customers’ needs for fresh milk and other farm foods, citing his God-given inalienable rights.
Like most Amish, Allgyer is reluctant to participant in the legal system, but he has chosen to
respond and his response claims that the FDA action “has created a serious dilemma” by
“violating [his] due process and equal protection under the law” and he “is prepared to proceed
with a public court forum, if necessary.”
Should Stengler sign the motion, the injunction would not ban Allgyer from selling in
Pennsylvania, but the Maryland families he supplies would lose their food source, he would lose
his out-of-state business and would be subjected to strenuous regulation and unannounced,
unlimited, unwarranted inspections at his expense, including costs of travel, food, lodging and
per diems for inspectors. A single inspection could cost up to ten thousand dollars.
Allyger’s response argues that the FDA’s action, though classified as a civil action, is in reality
“a quasi-criminal action…because of the severe sanctions and consequences that could occur as a result of the FDA investigation and the inspection” and as such “requires prior notice of the
offense, probable cause and official complaint, which is totally lacking in this case.”
Organizers of the DC area-buying club Grassfed on the Hill, supplied by Allgyer, helped form
the Raw Milk Freedom Riders in support of Allgyer and other farmers like him.
“The freedom riders are a group of consumers challenging the FDA’s regulation by engaging in
deliberate civil disobedience. They demand the FDA cease prosecuting farmers and consumers
for transporting raw milk across state lines,” says the group’s founder, Karine Bouis-Towe.
The riders have staged two Freedom Rides: on November 1 they took raw milk from
Pennsylvania to FDA headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland; and on December 8 they
transported raw milk from Wisconsin to Chicago, Illinois both times distributing the milk. The
FDA declined to prosecute in both cases.
The action against Allgyer is the latest in a string of FDA persecutions of Amish dairy farmers in
WHAT YOU CAN DO
Please contact your elected officials ask for support for HR 1830–the raw milk transportation bill. Rep. Ron Paul and Rep Chellie Pingree are the sponsors. We need more sponsors in Congress, and of course we are asking for votes.
How to Find your Representatives
Raw Milk Fact Sheet
SAMPLE LETTER- please add your personal views to make it unique.
Please support HR 1830—the Unpasteurized Milk Bill, which would allow farmers to legally transport fresh, unprocessed milk across state lines.
I ask you to support this legislation for several reasons
- I value my right to purchase food that has been raised, fed, and processed in the manner that I feel is best.
- Farmers across the nation selling fresh milk across stateliness are being prosecuted by the FDA wasting my tax dollars on an effort to shutdown thriving small farms and take choices away from informed consumers.
- By prohibiting transportation of fresh milk across state lines, the FDA is forcing a standard on farmers and consumers that is at odds with a majority of America since 39 states allow sales of fresh, unprocessed milk within state.
- Consumers have a right to hand-pick the foods they trust from the producers they trust. This trust-based relationship between farmers and consumers directly supports and revitalizes America’s rural economies.
Please co-sponsor HR 1830 so that small farmers may continue to supply their customers with fresh milk without having to worry about FDA raids that shut down their farms and businesses.
Thank you for your time and consideration of this issue. Please contact me if you have any further questions.