Monday, March 4, 2013

Raw Milk Monday

Please note: If you are new to my blog you can catch up on the reasons for my raw milk passion and the struggles our own farm have experienced, by reading any of the previous posts on the topic I have written over the last 3 years . To do so, simply enter "Raw Milk" in the search bar under the picture of our house, on the right.

Raw Milk and the ability to produce and consume it is dear to our hearts here on South Pork Ranch. The sales of such are also the financial foundation of our farm and the basis of a healthy diet for many of our customers. Changes are being proposed and in order to keep you well informed I will post on this topic every Monday.

Three weeks ago I was contacted by The Illinois Department of Public Health,specifically the division director of The Department of Food, Drugs and Dairies. I was asked to serve on a Raw Milk Steering Sub Committee.

The direction they wanted to "steer" raw milk sales became blatantly obvious with the first meeting I attended. To clarify, it was MY first meeting but it was the committees THIRD mtg. And at this third mtg they were discussing the SECOND draft of proposed rule changes. Clearly I was added as an afterthought. I had to ask myself why would they ask me to be on this committee knowing what a strong raw milk advocate I am?

I now believe it was a classic example of keeping your friends close and your enemies closer.

Because the rule changes are only proposed I will not yet list them here. There would not be a point in getting raw milk advocates and consumers totally riled if indeed changes can be made before the proposed rules become actual rules. I will tell you though that most of the proposed rules do not in any way favor the raw milk farmer or the raw milk consumer. A couple are positive changes, the rest are detrimental.

The next IDPH raw milk steering committee is May 1st which means we have a large amount of work to do in a short amount of time. So, if YOU are a raw milk farmer, either cow, goat, sheep or squirrel, (IDPH says these new proposed rules are not species specific,) and you want to help me and other raw milk farmers in presenting alternative rules to IDPH please CALL ME and I will fill you in on the very tough road we have ahead of us in Illinois

Donna OShaughnessy  South Pork Ranch LLC
Chatsworth, Il    815-635-3414


  1. Donna,
    I waited all day for your post. Yah I'm down sick with pneumonia. But if there is anything I can do to help... lick envelopes, send mass emailings... whatever just let me know.

  2. Hi Donna,

    Are the meetings open to the public?

  3. Donna,
    I'm a couple of states away, but If I can rattle someones cage for you or anything just let me know.

  4. Will these "proposed rules" be available to the general public for comment before they are made "real" rules? I sure hope so. And although I understand your reasoning for keeping the proposals under caps, knowing what insane thoughts go through political hacks minds is good to know. I would hope that the meetings are open to the public. But if they aren't that wouldn't surprise me in the least.

    Go forth, dear advocate of Milk (and food) Freedom, and give them HELL!

  5. Carolyn, Doug and others..the process , I hav ebeen told will go like this. The raw milk steering committee will vote on the proposed rules (I have no idea how effective this will be since the committee is heavily weighted with anti-raw milk people, thus I am recruiting more raw milk farmers to serve on this committee) THEN the proposed rules will be presented to the Illinois Food Safety Advisory Committee, then it will go to the states legal team. From there to the rules committee at the State Board of Health then to just the State Board of Health. Finally there will be two 45 day comment periods.

  6. This is complete BS. Leave it to the govt to beat the little guys down. This goes way beyond raw milk sales and raw milk consumption, but it directly involes something that I choose to do for me and my family. It's so frightening, the path that these ideological oligarchs are treading on. The fact that we cant buy a seed thats not GM, the fact that congress pushes through Citizens United, Glass Steagal, and other peices of legislation that strips our freedoms and rights is so infuriating. If you need bodies or voices we are ready to step in. Whatever way we can help, we will. In the meantime I hope all the other raw milk farmers will show a united presence. I hope they regret the decision to invole you on their committee. You have a great ability to reach out and rile us up. Its taken a long time for me to get to this point, but I think I'm ready to join the fight. I was so happy to find SPR and you and Keith. I shouldnt be surprised to realize that they are pissing on something that I value personally. Give em bigtime hell, and I mean it. We need more brave people like you to speak for us. I know you will keep us posted. Thanks as always for your time and hard work. Not only in the milkhouse but on the computer and at those meetings, fighting for what matters...Shannon G.

  7. Over turning Glass Steagall is what I meant!

  8. SG. Best customer of the year award? You got it. (Don't tell Doug above, I told him HE was my favorite) Yes, I too know this is about far more than just raw milk and that is why all of us need to get involved one way or another. Soon, I will need some very specific help from our consumers, and beleive me...I will ask.

  9. Donna,

    I'm praying for the cause of raw milk. There are so many benefits.