February 27, 2012
Number One Producer of Pasteurized Cow Milk In The World Is Also The Lowest Consumer
The United States is the world's largest producer of pasteurized cow milk, but oddly enough it is also one of the world's smallest consumers. The dairy industry thus has a vested interest in eliminating all raw milk suppliers from the market place to enforce and increase per capita consumption of pasteurized milk which is lagging behind most of the world.
The recent revelation of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's war on raw milk dairy farmers has very little to do with preventing nutritious sources of milk from getting to the public, but it has everything to do with protecting profits and expanding the dairy industry's reach on the marketplace.
Raw milk enthusiasts have known for a very long time that unpasteurized milk is the ONLY milk worthy of consumption. Pasteurization destroys enzymes, diminishes vitamin content, denatures fragile milk proteins, destroys vitamins C, B12 and B6, kills beneficial bacteria, promotes pathogens and is associated with allergies, increased tooth decay, colic in infants, growth problems in children, osteoporosis, arthritis, heart disease and cancer.
When Californian natural foods market, Rawesome Foods, was raided last August for selling “raw” or unpasteurized milk, it was not the first time. In fact, it is hardly a lone instance of government cracking down on the sale of raw milk.
Even in Canada, dairy farmers are playing the role of lawyers to defend their right to sell raw milk and now insist their rights have been violated.
In light of these raids across the country, many consumers of raw milk are now rightfully defending their right to consume the nutritious beverage at their discretion, when they want and without intrusion by federal milk police. Many have assumed that just as other restrictions of healthful foods and supplements, that a conspiracy exists to prevent nutritional sources of "any food or liquid" from public access. While this is partly true, the primary reasoning for the clampdown on raw milk has more to do with protecting the all mighty dollar than anything else.
It's All About Consumption
If we consider that the U.S. is the world's top producer of pasteurized cow's milk, it only makes sense that the dairy industry would want a bigger chunk of the pie in local production areas. Even Canada has a higher per capita consumption of cow's milk than the U.S. In fact, on a top 15 list of the largest per capita milk consumers in the world, the U.S. would come in last, with Finland, Sweden and Ireland rounding the top three positions.
However, when it comes to production, only India rivals the U.S, and only because they have a large network of buffalo milk producers making India the largest "milk" producer in the world. Cow's milk then conveniently becomes their second largest source of milk. The U.S on the other hand remains in top position for cow milk production.
Twenty-eight U.S. states still do not prohibit sales of raw milk. Cow shares can be found, and raw milk purchased for animal consumption in many states where retail for human consumption is prohibited. Most states impose restrictions on raw milk suppliers demanded by the FDA and Dairy industry.
Proponents of raw milk invoke the incredible benefits of direct-marketing when promoting their sale. The ability of the farmer to eliminate the middle-man and sell directly to the consumer allows for greater profitability.
So why not
create a police network via the FDA to limit access to raw milk across the country? This would ultimately force many consumers to purchase milk from approved suppliers of pasteurized milk, thus instantly expanding the dairy industry's business model by a large margin. Even if the world's top producer could increase its local consumption by 10%, this would add considerable revenue in any given year. Theoretically, the more they would police, the more consumption would increase.
This is the goal of the FDA. It has nothing to do with health and everything to do with increasing revenues for the dairy industry. Can you imagine if every industry you could eventually expand their customer network by millions of local consumers?
Debates continue to rage over this issue regarding individual rights and free markets by supporting the legalization of raw milk sales. Currently Senate Bills which would legalize the sale of raw milk are being delayed and in legislative loopholes. The Senate bills, illegal raids and arrest of farmers are providing opportunities for politicians to use the issue of raw milk sales as a catalyst to further the dialogue in respective states regarding job creation in a market economy and, on a more fundamental level, individual liberty.
Marco Torres is a research specialist, writer and consumer advocate for healthy lifestyles. He holds degrees in Public Health and Environmental Science and is a professional speaker on topics such as disease prevention, environmental toxins and health policy.