Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Raw Milk in 2013. Plans for Improvement.
So onto our plans for raw milk sales in 2013. In my last post you got a reminder about the history and an update on our present raw milk status. Today I'll expand more about our future plans in general and after that, in a future post, you'll get the nitty gritty such as costs involved.
No, you can't have the nitty gritty now because Keith hasn't gotten it yet and I believe strongly that the husband deserves the nitty gritty from his wife FIRST, then the rest of the world gets it.
So the general plans are this:
1. We will continue to sell raw milk direct to consumers in 2013. There are three primary reasons for this. The first: we believe it is an excellent part of a healthy diet and adults have the right to consume the food they desire and parents have the right to provide the diet they feel is best for their children. Second: very few dairy farmers will sell raw milk anymore, thus decreasing supply and increasing demand, and third; raw milk sales are just a small part of the on-farm-sales that ensure a profitable farm.
I would like to mention here, that in my opinion, "Profit" is not a dirty word. It is in fact, crucial if small family farms are to survive.
2. We will continue to advertise our raw milk sales but not in any big way, because frankly...we don't need to. As of today we are producing enough milk to feed our hogs AND serve our current customer base. So by advertising I mean, I will keep raw milk info on our farms web page HERE and we'll talk freely to any newspapers who want to interview us about our raw milk sales, but we will not take out any more print ads.
3. We will continue to serve as advocates for the right to consume raw milk, speaking to other groups, clubs as requested and writing articles for publication both as a source of revenue and as means for education of the public.
4. We will continue to self monitor our own sanitation regimes and milk test results since the public health department has made it very clear that as far as they are concerned, we just don't exist. Except when the County Health Department inspects our small (licensed) retail store and when the Illinois Department of Agriculture inspects our freezers and policies as required by our meat broker license. Yeah, other than THAT, government officials choose to ignore us.
5. We will increase the amount of education we do with our customers regarding raw milk consumption even though no regulatory agency requires it and no other local dairy is available to serve as a role model. We will do it simply because we feel it is the right thing to do. I'm considering regular email updates, a newsletter, some informal classes, increased farm signage, (strong handsome young body builders wearing those A-Frame signs maybe) not sure yet.
See you next time where we try to figure out how much grass (fencing, electricity, water, minerals, health care, gas, organic bedding, etc etc etc...) is needed to make one wonderful gallon of raw milk.