The much-anticipated Raw Milk Institute has gone live.
The brainchild of Mark McAfee, co-owner of Organic Pastures near Fresno, CA, the institute has introduced its website -- www.rawmilkinstitute.org.
Simply put, the goal of the institute is to use science-based food-safety principles to shore up a strong foundation for the growing raw-milk movement.
Raw milk is milk that hasn't been pasteurized to kill bacteria, some of which can make people sick or even kill them. These harmful organisms can be in milk from healthy animals as the result of contamination from fecal matter or unclean milking equipment.
"Raw milk isn't going to go away even though the federal government would like it to," said McAfee, who owns the largest raw-milk dairy in the nation.
He knows the strength of the raw-milk movement first hand. Demand for his dairy's raw milk is so strong that he hasn't been able to make any raw-milk butter or cheese -- products that his customers often request. He thought he'd solve that problem by bringing 80 new cows into his herd, boosting the total number to 420, but demand keeps rising, so much so that he still doesn't have enough milk to make butter or cheese.
A Holstein milk cow, the breed that McAfee has on his farm, typically produces from about 5 to 10 gallons each day, which means those 80 additional cows are giving McAfee a great deal more milk each day.