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Right to raw milk

Cassie Pence
Special to the Daily
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Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. in Edwards, Guidestone farmer David Lynch will talk about this new urbanism project as well as his fight and victory with the state of Colorado to keep his raw milk dairy farm.

Raw dairy products have not been heated, or pasturized. According to Lynch, heat kills the enzymes that help people digest lactose, which is why there is an increasing number of lactose intolerant people. Heating milk products also kills harmful bacteria, however.

“If you go to get milk off the shelves, you’re probably better off buying pasterized,” Lynch said. “You need the government to guarantee it’s safe because you don’t know where it’s coming from, who grew it or what the farm is like.”

Lynch’s dairy farm is a co-op, where people buy into the herd and the herd’s milk. Colorado Health Department sought to shut Lynch’s raw milk dairy down because it’s illegal to sell raw milk. If not produced carefully, raw milk can have a high rate of contamination. But raw milk, Lynch said, if produced from cows on open pastures in clean facilities, is also very nutritious. It has been proven, Lynch said, that raw milk stimulates the immune system, among other health benefits.

Lynch fought and won to change the legislation. To Lynch, the issue was largely about freedom of choice. He said the reason why raw milk is illegal is because dairy farmers who rely on pasterization to balance poor farming conditions lobby officials to require it. This will be part of his discussion on the politics of food.

“It’s about supporting the consumer farmer relationship, where if you have determined that his is an important food your family’s well being, you should have the right to sign a contract and obtain that product from your farmer.”

There will be samplings of raw milk, creme and yogurt. Lynch will also talk in general about the politics of food.

“The taste dramatically different,” Lynch said. “I equate a full bodied top of the line wine to raw milk.”

The event is part of Slow Food Vail Valley. Slow Food is an international organization that believes the enjoyment of wholesome food is essential to the pursuit of happiness. It is an educational organization dedicated to promoting stewardship of the land and ecologically sound food production and to revive the kitchen and the table as the centers of pleasure, culture and community.


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