CADA Newsletter April 2022

The stinky truth about pasteurized milk.

One member cuts to the cheese, er, the chase…

One of our members shares her story about switching to raw milk and enjoying better digestion.

Farting, passing wind, having gas, cutting the cheese—all terms for that embarrassing condition known as flatulence. If this problem affects you, have you considered it might be the pasteurized milk you are drinking?

Growing up on a farm in southern Ontario, I drank raw milk, though it was not labelled as such in those days. My parents had a mixed farm, primarily beef and pork, but we always had a cow to supply the family with fresh dairy. Eventually, I left home to make my own way in the world, which was when I began to drink store-bought milk—two percent, homogenized—because by then the low-fat diet was being pushed by the diet dictocrats. That was also when my embarrassing problem with flatulence began, though it would take me another twenty years to make the connection.

When company comes to visit and you cut a Silent But Deadly Fart (SBDF), you can always blame it on the dog. (Make sure you actually own a pet before doing so.) You can jump up suddenly, interrupting the conversation or the card game, and exclaim, “I left something on the stove” as you dash out of the room, hopefully not leaving a scent trail in your wake. Maybe you develop a special way of squatting to adjust your shoe while squeezing your butt cheeks together as tightly as possible.

A member of the Australian Women's Land Army milking a cow on a mixed farm at Sturt, South Australia in 1943. Photographer: Smith, D. Darian. Wikimedia Commons.
A member of the Australian Women’s Land Army milking a cow on a mixed farm at Sturt, South Australia in 1943. Photographer: Smith, D. Darian. Wikimedia Commons.

Or, like me, you can be proactive and study holistic nutrition. Initially, this led me to jump on the anti-milk bandwagon, believing all milk to be a foul choice. After all, I had my own experience to back me up. From there, I drifted over to the vegetarian camp, guzzling almond milk, and swallowing lactase pills when milk was unavoidable. After ten years, I realized that vegetarianism wasn’t giving me the health I wanted.

In 2009, I moved to Australia for a year. A short walk from my apartment was a wonderful butcher shop with organic, grass-fed meats. I abandoned vegetarianism and spent the year reclaiming my Polish and German dietary roots, including raw milk. Though raw milk is not legal in Australia, one could readily purchase bath milk in the health stores. Surely I wasn’t the only one not bathing in the stuff? During hikes into the mountains, we would stop at a roadside stand selling pet milk, another euphemism for raw milk. (The problem with raw milk not being legal is that it forces producers and consumers to go underground. Selling raw milk for the bath or pet absolves the farmer of liability, leaving the consumer to assume the risk if ingested.)

Even with drinking raw milk daily—perhaps because I drank raw milk—my flatulence problem became a thing of the past, arising only if dining with friends who served a dish made with store-bought milk. The effect was quickly detectable. I feared we might not get invited back.

So if flatulence, or even diarrhea, has led you to think you have a dairy intolerance, consider that you may actually have a pasteurized milk intolerance.

Share your story

How has raw milk had a positive impact on your health? Do you have any fond memories of drinking raw milk as a child? Do you have any delicious, traditional recipes that require raw milk?

Please send your stories to members@artisandairy.ca and we’ll share them in upcoming newsletters.

Looking for Researchers

To convince health authorities to legalize raw milk we need to provide evidence that raw milk for direct human consumption can be as safe as pasteurized milk when safe handling practices are followed. We also need to change outdated thinking that there are no health benefits of unpasteurized dairy over pasteurized. Do you know any researchers, PhD students or even Masters students looking for a research topic that will benefit Canadian farmers, consumers, and homesteaders? If so – tell them to contact us (action@artisandairy.ca) and we will share our information to help them explore these research opportunities.

Safe Raw Milk Production – researchers in pathogens/microbiology, food safety, farming methods and related areas:

The BC Herdshare Association has been conducting a pilot project investigating the efficacy of a HACCP-based food safety program and standards developed by the Raw Milk Institute (RAWMI) on farms milking 1 to 12 cows or equivalent goats in BC. As of March 27, 2022, 229 samples have been tested with 916 pathogen tests performed, and 100% of these test results were negative. Coliform and plate counts from RAWMI-certified farmers in this program are so good they meet U.S. Pasteurized Milk Ordinance (PMO) standards for pasteurized milk. We are looking for a university-based researcher to carry on this work and publish the results in a peer-reviewed paper.

Health Benefits of Raw Milk – researchers in public health, gut health, milk allergies and related areas:

There has been a lot of interest and research on the health benefits of raw milk in recent years – in mainly in Europe but also in the United States. However, no recently published paper summarizes the research on health benefits of raw milk. BC Herdshare has published a 2001-2018 summary prepared by a member on its website. Updating, expanding and making this part of a formal research project would counter Health Canada’s position that “there is no credible or scientific evidence that unpasteurized milk produces any measurable health benefits over pasteurized dairy products”.

Please express your interest in this research work by emailing action@artisandairy.ca

Membership update

Growth has slowed somewhat, though we are up to 786 members. Encourage friends in other raw milk social media groups to JOIN via the website. Politicians care about numbers— let’s show them we are not a small fringe minority.

Advocacy update

Federal Lobby: Our members have approached nineteen Members of Parliament. Three have agreed to support us and we are still following up with the rest. If you have sent a lobby letter out, please let us know by forwarding a copy to action@artisandairy.ca.

Provincial Lobby: In parallel with our federal lobby efforts, members are beginning to approach their provincial representatives. If you are interested in coordinating efforts for your province or joining a provincial subcommittee, please email action@artisandairy.ca.

WAYS YOU CAN HELP

Go to our website for ideas

  • Lobby your MP
  • Recruit new members
  • Like and share our posts on social media.

Donate

A one-time $25 donation from even a few people will go a long way to covering our annual costs. Send an e-transfer to donate@artisandairy.ca or a cheque payable to Canadian Artisan Dairy Alliance to 12 Upjohn Road, Unit 8, Toronto, ON M3B 2V9.

Food for thought

Have patience, the grass will be milk soon enough. ~ Chinese Proverb