Last week (31st March 2014) The Food Standards Agency (FSA) held a consultation on the future of raw (unpasteurised) milk.
In England we are currently not allowed to buy unpasteurised milk from the supermarket (Selfridges were taken to court last year by the FSA for selling it in their store in London). The selling of raw milk is banned in Scotland but in the England, we are allowed to buy it from the farmers gate; this is now up for review.
I know what my gut is telling me about lifting the restrictions on raw milk, making it freely available in shops but I am trying to be the devil’s advocate here too.
Against raw milk
- Before the invention and acceptance of pasteurization, raw milk was a common source of the bacteria that cause tuberculosis, diphtheria, streptococcal infections, typhoid fever, and other food borne illnesses.
- It can carry harmful bacteria like Salmonella, Listeria, and E. coli. These can make you very ill or even kill.
- Raw milk has been banned for good reason – vulnerable people are at risk of illness by drinking raw milk – the young, the elderly, pregnant women and those with a poor immune system.
- Pasteurisation does not alter the nutritional content of the milk significantly.
For raw milk
- People want to eat less processed food, so raw milk is a more natural alternative.
- Its about freedom of choice – we are fed up of being dictated to about what we can and can’t eat.
- People say it tastes better.
- It contains more nutrients than pasteurized milk? (essential fatty acids, vitamins A, B, C)
- It may help can prevent or cure some health problems?? (lactose intolerance and allergies)
- Buying it helps support local farmers and sustainable agriculture.
Earlier this week there was an interesting report on BBC radio 4’s Food Programme.
Perhaps you could listen to it here and let me know your views…..click on the poll below 🙂