- A left-right libertarian coalition led by U.S. Rep. Thomas Massie is sponsoring two bills in Congress to permit the interstate sales of raw milk. One would overturn the interstate ban on raw milk, while the other would permit interstate shipment of raw milk only if two states already permit intrastate sale.
- The Milk Freedom Act of 2014 would provide relief to local farmers, small producers, and others who “have been harassed, fined, and in some cases even prosecuted” for the “crime” of distributing unpasteurized milk, Massie says.
- The Interstate Milk Freedom Act would prevent the federal government from interfering with the trade of unpasteurized natural milk or milk products between the states where distribution or sale of such products is already legal.
The Milk Freedom Acts wouldn't necessarily help farmers in states that have their own laws against the sale of raw milk, but it would keep federal interference out of the picture. On-the-farm raw milk sales would come with the requirement that signs and labels be used to warn consumers that the milk has not been pasteurized and that any liability falls on the consumer. Some minimal sanitary standards are also included in the bill.
Massie declares: “Raw milk, which has been with us for thousands of years, is making a comeback among these discerning consumers. Personal choices as basic as ‘what we feed our families’ should not be limited by the federal government.” That's music to a libertarian's ear, but it's not exactly the way our food legislation functions. It will be interesting to see what develops on the raw milk front as a result of this move in Kentucky.