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Full Version: Achtung!! Forbotten by the government no to organic food
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http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-ra...full.story

Agencies that participated in the raid on Rawesome included the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, the Los Angeles County district attorney's office, the California Department of Food and Agriculture, the FDA and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Investigators confiscated the club's computer and 17 coolers packed with, among other things, 24 bottles of organic honey, 10 gallons of raw whole milk and two bottles of raw cane syrup. Stewart said the health department slapped a closure notice on the club's front door that said it was "operating a food facility without a valid public health permit."

The health department, district attorney's office and the FDA declined to comment, citing the pending investigation. The state Department of Food and Agriculture, which was the agency of record on the search warrant, said it continues to work with the district attorney's office.
I do really hate that sort of crap. It seems to me if the stuff isn't for general distribution but is only for this consenting group of folks it should be legal. I should have the right to opt out of having the govt "protect" me from myself and my choices of lifestyle. Since I cannot, I cannot consider myself a free woman.
"You gave your neighbor a zucchini. You are under arrest for violating the Monsanto Safe Food Bill of 2012."
"We will now take you to the Brinks, Los Angeles County Jail."
"According to the Facebook Privacy Act of 2012, you do not have to talk to the Prudential Police Dept of Los Angeles until you have updated your Facebook status."
"Anything you say can and will be recorded by SansDisk for replay on YouTube and possibly TMZ with no remuneration to you."
"Your case will be heard on Google TV and you can appeal to Microsoft if you disagree with the decision."
"Court may be avoided if you promise to do 40 hours of service in the BP Cleanup Crew."
Quote:"You gave your neighbor a zucchini. You are under arrest for violating the Monsanto Safe Food Bill of 2012."
"We will now take you to the Brinks, Los Angeles County Jail."
"According to the Facebook Privacy Act of 2012, you do not have to talk to the Prudential Police Dept of Los Angeles until you have updated your Facebook status."
"Anything you say can and will be recorded by SansDisk for replay on YouTube and possibly TMZ with no remuneration to you."
"Your case will be heard on Google TV and you can appeal to Microsoft if you disagree with the decision."
"Court may be avoided if you promise to do 40 hours of service in the BP Cleanup Crew."

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Pisses me off royally, too. As long as people are informed and aware of the risks, then there should be no law against it. The only "protection" should be proper identification of the foods and the risks associated with it.

It is a lot of work to have dairy goats. Regular goats can be lawnmowers, but you have to feed dairy goats quality food if you want quality milk and milk them every day, twice a day. It would be great if I could sell my excess to offset the costs but noooooo........ not unless I want to build my barn to Grade A dairy specs, pay for the license, get inspected and pasteurize (i.e. kill the beneficial organisms too) the milk. I certainly do not expect this to change in the next 5 years when I hope to start my herd. I can always trade the milk for something I need, but hell - it may even be illegal to barter it by then the way things are going.
<img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/bricks.gif" alt="Bricks" title="bricks" />
Please hang in there, sarafina. I always imagine those goats will be invaluable when tshtf and infants need milk. When my son was that age he was allergic and I bought goat's milk from someone. She milked the goat when I got there, so it doesn't get any fresher than that. Contact the local LaLeche League. I can't bear for that beautiful milk to go to waste.
http://www.lllusa.org/
Thanks, Valentine. One of the reasons I am learning to make cheese is so it doesn't go to waste and maybe I can help others, too.

Everything I am learning now is something to help up become as self-sufficient as possible. If TSHTF then we will be in good shape - if not then we will be in good shape LOL because we will have real, live food to eat.

This is my second year with a totally organic garden and it did fine as far as pests (all the rain we've had didn't do it any favors). Yes, I had bugs but they didn't do much damage. I had these weird bugs on my tomatoes and I just ignored them. A friend at work asked me about them and said they were bad at his house. I said yes, but they only messed up a few of the fruits. He said he sprayed his with malathion to kill them Scream
Quote:24 bottles of organic honey

I wonder why they took the honey - raw honey is not illegal to sell.

I have to laugh at the "organic" label though. No such thing. You have no control over which flowers the bees visit for nectar and any of them can be sprayed with chemicals. If the hives themselves are treated with chemicals for the mites it is always done after the honey is harvested.

But I guess it looks good on a label
<img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/mellow.gif" alt="Mellow" title="mellow" />
From a Dairy Goat mailing list I am on:

by David Gumpert

14 Jul 2010 10:32 AM

When the 20 agents arrived bearing a search warrant at her Ventura County
farmhouse door at 7 a.m. on a Wednesday a couple weeks back, Sharon Palmer
didn't know what to say. This was the third time she was being raided in 18
months, and she had thought she was on her way to resolving the problem
over labeling of her goat cheese that prompted the other two raids. (In
addition to producing goat's milk, she raises cattle, pigs, and chickens, and
makes the meat available via a CSA.)

But her 12-year-old daughter, Jasmine, wasn't the least bit tongue-tied.
"She started back-talking to them," recalls Palmer. "She said, 'If you take
my computer again, I can't do my homework.' This would be the third
computer we will have lost. I still haven't gotten the computers back that they
took in the previous two raids."

As part of a five-hour-plus search of her barn and home, the agents --
from the Los Angeles County District Attorney's office, Los Angeles County
Sheriff, Ventura County Sheriff, and the California Department of Food and
Agriculture -- took the replacement computer, along with milk she feeds her
chickens and pigs.

While no one will say officially what the purpose of this latest raid was,
aside from being part of an investigation in progress, what is very clear
is that government raids of producers, distributors, and even consumers of
nutritionally dense foods appear to be happening ever more frequently.
Sometimes they are meant to counter raw dairy production, other times to
challenge private food organizations over whether they should be licensed as food
retailers.

The same day Sharon Palmer's farm was raided, there was a raid on Rawesome
Foods, a Venice, Calif., private food club run by nutritionist and
raw-food advocate Aajonus Vonderplanitz. For a membership fee of $25, consumers
can purchase unpasteurized dairy products, eggs that are not only organic but
unwashed, and a wide assortment of fermented vegetables and other products.

The main difference in the two raids seems to be that Palmer's raiding
party was actually much smaller, about half the size of the Venice contingent:
Vonderplanitz was also visited by the FBI and the FDA.

In the Rawesome raid, agents made off with several thousand dollars worth
of raw honey and raw dairy products. They also shut Rawesome for failure to
have a public health permit, though the size and scope of the raid
suggests the government officials might have more in mind. Regardless, within
hours the outlet reopened in defiance of the shutdown order.

Earlier in June, agents of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture,
escorted by police and also bearing search warrants, raided and shut down
Traditional Foods Warehouse, a popular food club in Minneapolis specializing in
locally-produced foods. They also raided two farms suspected of illegally
selling raw milk. And in a national first among such raids, agents searched a
private home and made off with computers; the family's offense appears to
have been that it allowed one of the raw dairy farmers to park in its
driveway to distribute raw milk to area residents who had ordered it.

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture has declined comment on such
raids, saying they are part of an ongoing investigation into raw milk
distribution in the state in lieu of eight illnesses in May linked to raw milk.

Meanwhile, the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer
Protection has launched three raids over the last three months on the dairy
farm and farm store of Vernon Hershberger, near Madison. The day after DATCP
agents placed seals on his fridges storing raw dairy products in July,
Hershberger cut the seals, and announced he was going to challenge the
agency's contention he needs a dairy and retail license to sell his products.
Obtaining such licenses would be problematic, though, since Wisconsin prohibits
sale of raw milk, except "incidental" sales, and defining "incidental" has
been a bone of contention for many years. In any event, Hershberger
contends he sells only to consumers who contract privately for his food.

What's behind all these raids? They seem to stem from increasing concern
at both the state and federal level about the spread of private food groups
that have sprung up around the country in recent years -- food clubs and
buying groups to provide specialized local products that are generally
unavailable in groceries, like grass-fed meats, pastured eggs, fermented foods,
and, in some cases, raw dairy products. Because they are private and limited
to consumers who sign up for membership, these groups generally avoid
obtaining retail and public health licenses required of retailers that sell to
the general public. (For more on what's behind the raids, see this new
post.)

In late 2008 and early 2009, the representatives of state agriculture
agencies in Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan, and Illinois met via phone
conferences with representatives of the FDA to map a plan for targeting raw-milk
buying clubs in the Midwest. The meetings came to light after Max Kane, the
owner of a Wisconsin buying club who was subpoenaed by Wisconsin authorities
for the names of his customers and suppliers, obtained email accounts of the
sessions via a Freedom of Information request to Wisconsin's Agriculture,
Trade, and Consumer Protection department. (Kane has since been prosecuted
by Wisconsin authorities for contempt of court for failing to give up the
names; his case is under appeal after he was found guilty last December.)

Now, the Midwest program seems to have gone national, and the recent spate
of raids suggests a quickening pace and broadened scope. While most raids
before the Midwest government meetings had been related to raw-milk
distribution, some, like a December 2008 armed raid of Manna Storehouse, an Ohio
food club near Cleveland, have been about licensing issues. In that raid,
armed law enforcement officers held a mother and eight young children being
home-schooled at gunpoint for several hours while they searched the home and
food storage areas. A legal challenge to the raid by the family is still
tied up in court.

The current uptick has Pete Kennedy of the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense
Fund concerned, not only about the spreading of the raids, but about the
seemingly easy willingness of judges to hand out search warrants. While the
U.S. Constitution's fourth amendment suggests judges should exercise tight
controls over search warrants ("no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable
cause..."), Kennedy observes, "I haven't seen an agency turned down yet"
over the last four years in requests for search warrants connected with raw
milk and other food production and distribution.

Given that the targets of search warrants don't get a say in court as to
whether they should be issued, legal experts and those who have been raided
say the most that food producers can do is take steps to prepare themselves
to weather the raids as best they can.

Here are five suggestions they offer:

Be wary of strangers who want to join your private buying group or
herdshare: Before they seek out a search warrant, regulators invariably nose
around and infiltrate private buying groups or raw milk herdshares to gain
information on "probable cause." They'll often make up sad stories as to why
they should be allowed to join. Gary Cox of the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense
Fund recalls how an undercover agent from the New York Department of
Agriculture and Markets infiltrated Meadowsweet Dairy LLC, a private
organization of 120 Ithaca consumers who bought shares to gain access to raw dairy
products, in 2007: "He was insistent. 'I live so far away, and I only come
here so very infrequently, so can't I at least have some (milk) today,
PLEEEEEEEASE, because otherwise I won't be able to get any for a long time.' Barb
Smith felt sorry for him and relented. We know what the consequence was of
her kindness." The consequence was an open-ended search warrant that agents
used several times in late 2007 and early 2008 to confiscate product,
leading up to a legal challenge to the LLC that is currently under appeal
following rulings in New York state courts against Meadowsweet.

Have a video camera at the ready: Since search warrants are usually
specific as to what can be searched and/or seized, a video recording of events
inhibits abuses by regulators and other law enforcement personnel. Regulators
and law enforcement officials definitely don't appreciate being
videotaped, and sometimes will simply disconnect videos or order targeted individuals
to put the videos away. According to Aajonus Vonderpanitz, in the June
raid of his Rawesome Foods outlet, "They unplugged our surveillance camera to
hide their actions. They threateningly refused video capture of their raid
when members commenced filming."

Have a plan of action: Much like planning how your family might escape a
fire, decide in advance who will handle the video camera, who will collect
business cards or take down the names of all agents, and who will interact
with the regulators. The regulators and police count on the element of
surprise to sow confusion, and keep the targets from responding intelligently.

Read the search warrant fine print: Sometimes there are limitations on the
search warrants that targets can exploit. Vernon Hershberger, the
Wisconsin dairy farmer, was able to slow the regulators down because he knew the
search warrant in his case likely wouldn't allow forcible entry, so when
agents returned a second time, after he cut the seals on his fridges, he locked
his farm store doors and they were forced to leave. They eventually
returned with an amended warrant that specifically allowed them to take his
computer.

Keep computer backups: In nearly all such raids, the authorities
confiscate computers so they can document transactions and customer interactions. If
you don't have a backup of what's on your disk, you can literally be put
out of business. Moreover, it's advisable to monitor what information you
keep on the computer in the farmhouse or in your food club. There's something
to be said for backing up every few days onto another computer kept
off-site.

David Gumpert is the author of The Raw Milk Revolution: Behind America’s
Emerging Battle Over Food Rights (Chelsea Green, 2009). He is also a
journalist who specializes in covering the intersection of health and business.
His popular blog has chronicled the increasingly unsettling battles over raw
milk. He has authored or coauthored seven books on various aspects of
entrepreneurship and business and previously been a reporter and editor with the
Wall Street Journal, Inc. magazine, and the Harvard Business Review.
Good Lord we are looking more and more like Cuba.
Cuba?
More like
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reminds me Fidel castro at Plaza de la Revolucion blaming US for people been hungry, wait didn't Hitler blamed the Jews for the same?
Another story from a dairy goat list I am on:

Quote:It's not just California.

In my hometown there was a Meth house. My wife smelled it, many people knew it was there, we know a lady whose daughter went astray and she was complaining about this same house. My wife talked to the police and they would do nothing.

Same time, a woman runs a rural health food store and has half a dozen alpine goats she milks. She was selling the raw milk as "pet food". The authorities got wind of it and she got shut down. She had to get rid of the goats. She still runs the store.

Meth... shrug ... who cares, but don't mess with raw milk. I can see the cops coming in with their guns drawn. Maam, put down the milk and back away.

**edited to add: this lady lives in Iowa and raw milk sales are illegal.

What these nice folks don't realize is the "Protect and Serve" applies to corporations and gov't money operations FIRST and individuals a distant second (if at all or to keep the pretense up). Meth and commercial dairies are big business.

What I find odd is this map: http://www.farmtoconsumer.org/raw_milk_map.htm indicates raw milk sales in California are legal. Also this http://www.realmilk.com/milk-laws-1.html :
Quote:Summary:

Sales of raw milk and raw milk products are legal both in stores and on the farm. In order for raw milk to be sold legally, it must be 'market milk. 'This is milk that meets the standards provided in the Milk and Milk Products Act of 1947.

Under the Act, market milk is graded and designated into three classes:'certified milk,' 'guaranteed milk,' and 'Grade A milk. 'Of the three classes, only Grade A raw milk is available for sale today in California. The standards for guaranteed raw milk to be market milk are more stringent than those for Grade A raw milk. While the Milk and Milk Products Act calls for county milk commissions to set the standards for certified raw milk, not a single county milk commission still exists.

Raw milk dairy farmers need market milk permits in order to produce their product. In addition, any person engaged in an aspect of the milk business that falls under the statutory definition of milk products plant must obtain a milk products plant license. There is an exemption from the license requirement, however, for "any producer whose business consists exclusively of producing and distributing raw market milk produced by such producer."

Raw milk and most raw milk products require warning labels. Municipalities and counties in the state have the power to establish compulsory pasteurization laws but only Humboldt County has done so.

I looked up Arkansas and "incidental" sales of raw milk is legal if sold directly from the farm. Incidental is defined as less than 100 gallons a month.