The Australian government wants its people to literally “recoil in horror” if they ever dare to have a taste of unpasteurized fresh milk. So much so, they are forcing raw milk producers to contaminate their future milk goods with a bittering agent that would entirely preclude human consumption.
The “spoilage” we’re talking about here is to prevent the possibility of people getting around the regulation to consume it or let their animals consume it by…ruining it! Making it not just unpalatable, but impossible to drink.
Raw milk in Australia – or at least in Victoria – is not actually sold for humans, as pasteurization is compulsory. It is sold as a cosmetic product for natural milk baths and already labeled “For cosmetic use only – Not for human consumption,” since it still needs refrigeration and is sold next to food goods like pasteurized dairy products. Victoria’s Chief Health Officer, Dr Rosemary Lester, wrote to to Victorian Consumer Affairs to “rectify” the issue.
Victorian Minister for Consumer Affairs Jane Garrett said:
Raw milk producers will have to either treat the milk with a pasteurisation process to make sure that any harmful bacteria are killed before there is a risk that consumers will drink it.
If they don’t wish to go through this pasteurisation process, they will be required to add a very small drop of an agent that makes the milk entirely unpalatable.
This means that the smallest amount will make the individual recoil in horror, which will prevent absolutely the deliberate or accidental consumption.
I can’t help but note a flippant tone when she says, “It is used often in making soap for example, or making stock feed and that can be done without it ever gracing the shelves.”
The reasons given publicly include the fear that people might unfortunately accidentally ingest this dangerous product – or might dare to circumvent the regulation and do it deliberately. As you might guess, it’s to eradicate access. One raw milk company in Australia has been unfairly blamed for the death of an ill three year old, before a coroner’s report, even after a milk test came back clear of harmful elements, and the child didn’t even drink it according to the family! The media interviewed a nutritionist saying there are no benefits to drinking raw milk – and still put the three year old’s death in the headline. The government and media are exploiting the death to further bolster the goal of eradication.
The following information was accessed in 2012, but just over a hundred people on average become sick from raw milk each year; fewer than sicknesses from pasteurized milk. Milk products in general are low risk; only a few hundred sicknesses out of around 24,000 foodborne illness cases each year in the U.S. Raw milk sicknesses make up about 0.005 percent of that threat, and the chances of food sickness are 1,300 times higher from eating at a restaurant than from drinking raw milk.
Similar to Australia, the U.S. FDA and health department underlings have the end goal of eliminating raw milk access by each new tightening regulation. For instance, in Illinois, it was readily admitted that the motives behind burdensome regulations were to eradicate it and keep it away from consumers. Bottom line: it’s most definitely not about your safety.
Pasteurization practices have only been standard for the last century and was just one way to prevent death from contaminated “swill milk” during a time of congested work towns, horses for transportation and virtually no sanitation. Two options were up for decision – inspections leading to raw milk certifications or pasteurization. The New York Milk Committee of 1910 opted for pasteurization. Large companies also wanted a return on their investments in emerging pasteurization technology. The very real public health safety risk (caused by lack of sanitation) was not rationally solved based on greater long-term health, but by short-term economic gains.
However, the reader can now decide why governments are trying to eradicate access to fresh, unpasteurized milk. Australia mostly likely got the idea from us, and didn’t start mandating the practice until the 1940s.
See the Harvard Raw Milk Debate, starting at the 14-minute mark.
Hat tip to Alan Watt for the story.
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