From Dr. Mercola:
By Dr. Mercola
In 2012, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) conducted a survey to determine whether illegal drugs were finding their way into the US milk supply. The study was only green-lighted after a more than year-long “negotiation” into its terms with the dairy industry and state governments.
Why the FDA, which is charged with protecting the public health, would need to negotiate study terms with an industry it is supposed to police is only one murky aspect to this story…
Even more unsettling is the fact that in 2014, more than two years after the study’s completion, the FDA has yet to release its findings. Surely in two years the FDA has had ample time to analyze its findings and prepare a report. What did they find that they are hiding?
The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) intends to find out… it has filed a Freedom of Information Act request for the survey data. Said CSPI senior food safety attorney David Plunkett:1
“Consumers have a right to know what’s in their milk, and if there are dangerous drugs in it, they need to know what FDA is doing about that … Why are those dairies that either can’t or won’t follow the rules allowed to continue to market milk?”
Got Milk? You Might Have Drugs with That, Too
CSPI has reason to be suspect of drugs in milk. In 2011, they reviewed drug-testing reports at slaughter plants and found that dairy farms accounted for 67 percent of drug-residue violations. In all, 17 different drugs were found in more than 735 drug-positive tissue samples.
This included drugs that are banned for use in cattle, such as the antibiotic gentamicin.2 When illegal drug residues are found in animals coming from dairy farms, it’s an indication that drugs may be being improperly used elsewhere on the farm, and possibly accumulating in your milk as well.
Also in 2011, Spanish and Moroccan researchers used a highly sensitive test to determine what types of medications could be found in a variety of milk (cow, goat and human breast milk). They hit the chemical jackpot. Medications used to treat diseases in both humans and animals were revealed. Among the drugs and hormones detected were:3
Anti-inflammatories (niflumic acid, mefenamic acid, ketoprofen, diclofenac, phenylbutazone, naproxen, flunixin, and diclofenac) Antibiotics (florfenicol) Natural hormones (estrone) Sex hormones (17-beta-estradiol) Steroid hormones (17-alpha-ethinylestradiol) Anti-malaria drugs (pyrimethamine) Anti-fungal drugs (triclosan)
While all types of milk tested contained chemicals, cow’s milk contained the highest levels. Some of these drugs and hormones were given to the cows directly, while others were likely ingested from the cattle food or contamination on the farm.
The FDA has authority to require milk be tested if evidence exists that drug residues may be in the milk supply. However, CSPI notes that although the FDA has stopped some dairy farms from selling their cattle for meat after drug residue violations, this prohibition doesn’t typically extend to the milk.4
This is quite ironic, since the FDA, and other government agencies, seems to have no problem going after raw milk farmers, even when there is no evidence of contamination whatsoever…
Raw Milk Farmers Continue to Be Bullied
Raw dairy products from organically raised pasture-fed cows rank among some of the healthiest foods you can consume. In California, where raw milk can be sold legally and is tested and state-inspected, it often far exceeds pasteurized milk product standards without any heat or processing.
In other words, raw milk producers oftentimes adhere to stricter safety standards than CAFOs (confined animal feeding operations) do. Still, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) commonly warns against drinking raw milk, citing numerous “outbreaks” linked to the product. But drinking raw milk produced by grass-fed cows from clean, well-run farms is actually far LESS dangerous than drinking pasteurized milk.
In fact, not only does raw milk contain beneficial bacteria that are essential for a healthy digestive system, raw milk also offers protection against disease-causing bacteria. CDC data show there are about 412 confirmed cases of people getting ill from pasteurized milk each year, while only about 116 illnesses a year are linked to raw milk.5
Research by Dr. Ted Beals, MD, featured in Wise Traditions, the quarterly journal of the Weston A. Price Foundation, also showed that you are actually about 35,000 times more likely to get sick from other foods than you are from raw milk!6
Meanwhile, the CDC stays silent about the proven health benefits linked to raw milk, like the GABRIELA study, which found school-aged children who drank raw milk were 41 percent less likely to develop asthma and about 50 percent less likely to develop hay fever than children who drank store-bought (pasteurized) milk.7
Fort Worth Regulators Fine Raw Dairy Farmer Two Counties Over…
Despite the facts, aggressive regulators continue to attack small farmers producing wholesome raw food products for loyal customers. One of the latest cases is in Fort Worth, Texas, where Eldon Hooley, who runs a “very clean raw milk operation” 40 miles south, is facing thousands of dollars in fines for operating an “illegal food establishment” and distributing “unfit food.”8
And get this: Hooley is licensed to sell raw dairy products out of his farm. But because some members of a food coop bought food there and then distributed it in Fort Worth, the city regulators are coming after him.
The city is using an updated ordinance that now states even the distribution of raw milk is prohibited… despite the fact that these Fort Worth residents obviously appreciated the ability to get farm-fresh raw food distributed to their neighborhoods without having to drive 40 miles to get it. And Fort Worth is not the only region trying to take these types of draconian control measures.