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THE TRUTH OF THE MATTER DOESN'T MATTER
By Doreen Hannes
March 8, 2011
On February 26th, I received word that the verdict had come in on Morningland of the Ozarks court case. Late on Sunday night I received the documents. It took a little digesting, but one thing was clear straight out of the gate;
if we want justice, we aren’t going to get it without a jury of our peers. Morningland was denied a jury trial.
Interestingly, in the section requesting that there be “Burden of Proof” to destroy the cheese, the judge finds that it’s unnecessary. He says, “judicial review probes only the lawfulness of an agency’s order without consideration of its reasonableness.” Further, he states, “The court finds no authority suggesting the State must prove defendant’s cheese unfit for human consumption...,” and also that the because of the “unsanitary surroundings” the “court must disregard the absence of sickness among consumers of defendant’s cheeses.” Reason, logic and actual illness and, evidently, due process are irrelevant if an agency decides to act against you....
...The most stunning thing about Wightman’s testimony was when the Attorney General’s Counsel asked if selling cows would reduce the somatic cell count and he replied, “Yes.”
This was when the dairy farmers jaws were dropping. Mine included.
Really, Tim? Selling cows reduces the SCC? No qualifications in the equation? Selling cows reduces the SCC? Dry cows? Really?
Based on this statement of the “dairy expert”, the judge has ruled that Morningland had diseased cows in their herd and sold them to avoid detection. Those dry cows were obviously the source of contamination that led to Morningland’s problems. Never mind that they exhibited no symptoms, testing or proof, and no one became ill. Evidence is unnecessary....
“judicial review probes only the lawfulness of an agency’s order without consideration of its reasonableness.”
... The saga began in June when some of the farm's cheeses were seized in an armed raid at Rawesome Foods, a health food store in California. On Nov. 2, 2010, Food Safety News reported, "With guns drawn, federal, state and local authorities entered the Venice raw food club and seized cartons of raw milk and packages of unpasteurized goat cheese."
Coincidentally, the raid occurred at a time when FDA had begun to take a harder look at producers using raw milk in their cheese production. Recently, FDA initiated a program to test the buildings and equipment used in cheesemaking for Listeria. www.foodsafetynews.com...
...After performing tests on the Morningland Dairy cheeses that had been distributed to the California retailer, officials from the California Department of Food and Agriculture announced that some of the samples contained trace amounts of Listeria monocytogenes and Staphylococcus aureus. Missouri state officials were notified of the contamination found in the company's products....
...After Morningland Dairy conducted the recall, 14 samples of Morningland Dairy's cheese were sent to a St. Louis laboratory to be tested. Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster and Missouri's State Milk Board reported that all 14 samples tested positive for Staphylococcus aureus and 6 of the samples tested positive for lLsteria monocytogenes.
On Oct. 1, Missouri's State Milk Board condemned all the company's cheese products manufactured between Jan. 1 and Aug. 26 and ordered them destroyed; however, Morningland Dairy objected to the destruction, disputing the allegations that their cheeses were contaminated. The company refused to obey the Board's order because it would result in the loss of eight months of work, as well as approximately $250,000.
In response to Morningland's refusal to destroy its cheese products, Attorney General Koster sought a court order enforcing the state's destruction notice, which has resulted in the current litigation in Howell County. ...
Originally posted by SlovenlyGhost
And I thought our courts were a joke. No evidence needed? No jury? what are these guys afraid of?
Phfft, totally ridiculous. Feels sorry for the farmers,though.
Hmm.. Can the company get independant testing done? May not be admissable in court, given that it seems to be a kangaroo court anyway, but it would strengthen their public stance.
First off, those of you who haven't read my posts on Mad Sheep should pick up the book and read it. It was written by Linda Faillace of Vermont. She and her husband followed the USDA regs to the letter and with their blessing imported sheep from Belgium nearly 10 years ago. Within a few years, the USDA was screaming that the sheep had mad cow disease, and that they didn't know if Belgium had been feeding animal bone meal.
All feed records had been obtained from the farms purchased from. The Faillaces had been responsible for starting the voluntary scrapie program in Vermont, and the sheep came from certified scrapie free flocks. And...sheep don't get mad cow; it's a different variation.
No tests had been done on the Faillace sheep, but some had been done on sheep they'd imported. The USDA demanded all sheep be given up for testing. Thus began their war on the Faillaces, which lasted years. Both Larry and Linda had studied TSEs and worked in labs in England a few years earlier, so they knew exactly how tests needed to be run and that there was no way their sheep had BSE.
In the end, they went to court...and lost. There's no way they should have lost, because through the freedom of information act they found that over 400 tests had been run showing their sheep to be negative, not positive. Then they found the lab that had run the tests had botched the test, and had never been inspected (which needed to be done to be approved for running these tests), and that the USDA and the Dr from the lab had lied under oath.
The courts still ruled in favor of the USDA, the sheep were confiscated and destroyed, and the family is still waiting for compensation. Armed federal agents were sent along with a whole parade of others to do the deed.... www.homesteadingtoday.com...
Court: Beef Exporters Can't Test for Mad Cow Disease
Beef exporters are banned from testing their cattle for mad cow disease without approval from the government, which has exclusive control on test kits, a divided federal appeals court panel said today.
A Kansas-based exporter, Creekstone Farms Premium Beef, seeking to test its cattle to minimize public fear, challenged Department of Agriculture regulations that block corporations from buying and using kits to test for mad cow disease. There is no cure and no treatment for the neurological disease. It’s 100 percent fatal.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, in a 2-1 opinion, upheld USDA control of the kits. Judges Karen LeCraft Henderson and Judith Rogers sided with the government; Chief Judge David Sentelle dissented. legaltimes.typepad.com...
“There is a small chance that mad cow disease.. (BSE), is already in this country, according to a risk assessment released today by Harvard University. The risk assessment concluded that even if BSE had entered this country, it wouldn’t become a major public health problem, although human illnesses could occur” - Harvard Risk Assessment 12/3/2001
After disease detectives in Great Britain determined that mad cow (BSE), was spread by feeding cattle infected meal, British officials banned the practice. But they didn't ban the export of feed, spreading BSE to continental Europe and Japan...At the height of the BSE epidemic, the UK exported 500,000 tons, including 168,000 metric tons of MBM (meat and bone meal) between 1990 and 1996. It also exported 3.2 million cattle to 36 countries. A Harvard study said that the exact amount sent to the U.S. was unknown, but it noted that at least 69 tons of "mammalian meal and flour" and 334 cattle were shipped here during the period. www.organicconsumers.org...
Classic example of a government agency using it's brute power to give the public the impression that is performing a vital job.
...The claim is that the USDA did this because of Pseudorabies, yet the government did not follow it’s own standard operating procedures of testing as outlined in the USDA’s own documents. The USDA spilled bodily fluids from the slaughtered pigs all over the road where any disease could be transmitted to other farms and other animals. Slaughter is not required for testing for Pseudorabies. These issues seriously puts into question the validity of the disease claim and/or the competence of the government officials involved...
The Henshaws were not provided with any test reports. It is doubtful that blood from a hog shot at the hunting reserve would have been viable for testing because of the time lapse from the death of the animal and the testing of the blood unless proper refrigeration techniques were used. Danny and Cindi were held under armed guard around the clock and not allowed to move around to see what was taking place.....
In the United States today, any animal owner might experience the same depopulation tactics that the Henshaws just experienced. Regulations vary from state to state. Animal owners might be paid a portion of what the killed animals were worth. In most states, no warrant is required to enter the farm and tests are not required to confirm a disease.
Gotta protect the capitalism, you know. Contrary to popular mythology, entrepeneurship and competition are actually antithetical to that particular economic system, since it creates, well, competition, when the actual goal is wealth consolidatiion via monopolization.
So we gotta shut down all the small farms, so agricorp can dominate the field (so to speak). The courts - from day one, they existed to protect the interests of the few from the needs of the many - are simply the mechanism by which this system is perpetuated in this particular case. We could replace all the justices with pretty much anyone of your choice, and the problem would remain because the problem is not individual. it's not even departmental; it's systemic.
International Harmonization www.cfsan.fda.gov...
The harmonization of laws, regulations and standards between and among trading partners requires intense, complex, time-consuming negotiations by CFSAN officials. Harmonization must simultaneously facilitate international trade and promote mutual understanding, while protecting national interests and establish a basis to resolve food issues on sound scientific evidence in an objective atmosphere. Failure to reach a consistent, harmonized set of laws, regulations and standards within the freetrade agreements and the World Trade Organization Agreements can result in considerable economic repercussions.
Participation in Codex Alimentarius
Cosmetics International Activities
International Organizations and Standard-Setting Bodies
International Office of Epizootics (OIE)
International Plant Protection Convention
World Health Organization (WHO)
Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO
Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA)
Joint Meeting on Pesticide Residues
Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Microbiological Risk Assessments
Pan American Health Organization
Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development
INTERNATIONAL COMMITTEE FOR ANIMAL RECORDING
PATENTING IN THE ANIMAL SECTOR
“...The Patenting Sentinel and Action Service (PSAS) is an important initiative of the International Committee for Animal Recording (ICAR) as regards patenting in the animal sector. This is an issue which is of uttermost importance for the future of all organizations involved in the sectors of animal recording and genetic evaluation. The latest developments in this field and the future prospects are causing increasing concern among industrialists and breeders, thus stressing the need for continuous updating on the progress of animal patenting issues worldwide and raising the awareness of professionals regarding their possibility to take action towards the protection of their professional interests.
Based on the above concerns, the Board of the International Committee for Animal Recording has considered ways to positively support ICAR member organizations and other interested entities in confronting the issue of patenting in animal breeding. The result of the deliberations is the ICAR Patenting Sentinel and Action Service, formed in March-April 2006....
The mission of the ICAR Patenting Sentinel and Action Service (PSAS) is to:
constantly update its members on patenting application legislation in the animal sector, so as to lead to a deeper knowledge of the theoretical and practical aspects of this issue;
monitor specific patent applications worldwide, which are of most interest to its members;
possibly take action in a rapid and effective way in relation to specific patenting applications.
Animal Patents: www.icar.org...
INTERNATIONAL ANIMAL PATENT SERVICES (CONNECTED TO FAO, OIE, and ISO.)
As the animal recording and evaluation industry evolves, so will ICAR membership. The recently revised by-laws provide the opportunity for expanded membership and a broader level of participation... Various industry sectors (by species as well as activity) will participate in ICAR as members in order to participate and access the global network, expertise and exposure that ICAR provides. ICAR will continue to build on its strength of neutrality and integrity as related to standards and guidelines for animal recording, evaluations and equipment approvals. This will include further strategic alliances with international organizations including EAAP, FAO, IDF, OIE, ILRI, WAAP and ISO.
Patent Questions and Answers by EFFAB (ex FAIP)
The concept of "Patent": "A patent is an exclusive right granted for an invention, which is a product or a process that provides, in general, a new way of doing something, or offers a new technical solution to a problem. In order to be patentable, the invention must fulfill certain conditions..." read more at the website of the World Intellectual property Organization.
Relation between Patenting and Intellectual Property: Patenting is one of the different forms of Intellectual Property. The latter "allows people to own their creativity and innovation in the same way that they can own physical property. The owner of IP can control and be rewarded for its use, and this encourages further innovation and creativity to the benefit of us all." read more at the website of the UK Patent Office.
General Overview of IP Protection Tools by the IPR Helpdesk. Go.
General Information Concerning Patents by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Go.
IP protection in animal breeding: "The field of animal breeding and genetics, especially as it relates to farm animals and livestock, encompasses a broad range of species, traits and processes. A simple laundry list of those items that might directly affect our field and require IP protection include, but are not limited to, genes and markers for genetic improvement, statistical methods for genetic improvement, transgenic and cloned animals, methods to measure traits (e.g. use of ultrasonic probes), electronic methods to identify animals, computer software and other written materials. Allied fields like nutrition and veterinary medicine will also have methods or processes such as vaccines, feed supplements or specific treatments." read the entire article by Rothschild M.F., Plastow G., Newman S.: Patenting in animal breeding and genetics. (2004) In: WAAP Book of the Year 2003 - A Review on Developments and Research in Livestock Systems, Eds: A. Rosati ,A. Tewolde and C. Mosconi, 269-278. 27.3b
Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) by WTO (World Trade Organization)Full text or Article 27.3b on traditional knowledge, biodiversity or Progress on Article 27.3b.
FAO is supporting harmonization of seed rules and regulations in Africa and Central Asia in order to stimulate the development of a vibrant seed industry...An effective seed regulation harmonization process involves dialogue amongst all relevant stakeholders from both private and public sectors. Seed quality assurance, variety release, plant variety protection, biosafety, plant quarantine and phytosanitary issues are among the major technical areas of a regional harmonized seed system. The key to a successful seed regulation harmonization is a strong political will of the governments involved www.fao.org...
In the EU, there is now a list of 'official' vegetable varieties. Seed that is not on the list cannot be 'sold' to the 'public' To keep something on the list costs thousands of pounds each year...Hundreds of thousands of old heirloom varieties (the results of about eleven thousand years of plant breeding by our ancestors) are being lost forever, due to some rather poorly drafted EU legislation. www.realseeds.co.uk...
wonder where these "consumer protection" entities are when produce and meat that's been literally grown on/ in crap and industrial waste is coming across the border to sit on our store shelves without any alternatives available
“Currently, we are particularly interested in receiving manuscripts that deal with some of the following subjects, although other submissions will continue to receive full consideration:
Implementing sustainable development strategies, Rio-Agenda 21 and Millennium Development” Objectives: The Journal of Environment and Development
Graduate School of International Relations & Pacific Studies
University of California, San Diego, MC0519
9500 Gilman Drive
La Jolla, CA 92037-0519, USA
Bioinformatics researchers at the University of California, San Diego and Genentech have developed a new, quicker way to sequence monoclonal antibodies www.universityofcalifornia.edu...
UCSD's Biotech Certificates Program is admired as the most advanced in the UC system.
Closer to the Heart of the San Diego 'Biotech Zone': The Program's Service Goals
The UCSD RA Program classes recently moved to the San Diego 'Biotech Zone'--into the same building as a major CRO, Parexel, and only blocks from another big CRO, Quintiles. Both CROs will contribute RA experts to classroom discussions of topics. Nearby are also the new headquarters of Novartis, represented on the Advisory Board of UCSD Biotech Certificates Programs, as is Invitrogen. Other Advisory Board members, Monsanto and Dow, together with its hometown subsidiary Mycogen, demonstrate regional strengths in agbiotech (which is expected to "absolutely boom" in the near future). The newest UCSD Certificate in Agricultural Biotech is under development, since the UCSD Biotech Certificates program aims to be comprehensive and progressive in service to all biotech sectors.
The one single issue that the State objected to was not the sale of the milk itself, or even the location, but the fact it was not pasteurized, which is required under Missouri law.....
..published in Magazine Digest - June 1938 Armchair Science is a British Medical Journal
Pasteurization's great claim to popularity is the widespread belief, fostered by its supporters, that tuberculosis in children is caused by the harmful germs found in raw milk. Scientists have examined and tested thousands of milk samples, and experiments have been carried out on hundreds of animals in regard to this problem of disease-carrying by milk. But the one vital fact that seems to have been completely missed is that it is CLEAN, raw milk that is wanted. If this can be guaranteed, no other form of food for children can, or should, be allowed to take its place.
Dirty milk, of course, is like any other form of impure food — a definite menace. But Certified Grade A Milk, produced under Government supervision and guaranteed absolutely clean, is available practically all over the country and is the dairy-farmer's answer to the pasteurization zealots.
Recent figures published regarding the spread of tuberculosis by milk show, among other facts, that over a period of five years, during which time 70 children belonging to a special organization received a pint of raw milk daily. One case only of the disease occurred. During a similar period when pasteurized milk had been given, 14 cases were reported.
Besides destroying part of the vitamin C contained in raw milk and encouraging growth of harmful bacteria, pasteurization turns the sugar of milk, known as lactose, into beta-lactose — which is far more soluble and therefore more rapidly absorbed in the system, with the result that the child soon becomes hungry again.
Probably pasteurization's worst offence is that it makes insoluable the major part of the calcium contained in raw milk. This frequently leads to rickets, bad teeth, and nervous troubles, for sufficient calcium content is vital to children; and with the loss of phosphorus also associated with calcium, bone and breain formation suffer serious setbacks.
Pasteurization also destroys 20 percent of the iodine present in raw milk, causes constipation and generally takes from the milk its most vital qualities.
“...While I believe a meaningful, uniform, universal ID system for all livestock with adequate tracking will evolve, as a state animal health official, I would be less than responsible if I did not encourage industry and government to move quickly to get a handle on our ability to traceback animals today for diseases such as brucellosis, tuberculosis, and others that present risks of exacerbation and the extreme costs associated with such...” Dr. Sam Holland, State Veterinarian, South Dakota from REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON LIVESTOCK IDENTIFICATION - 2005
Summary of Tuberculosis Surveillance in California Cattle
Number of Cattle Tested........1995.....1996.....1997.......1998.......1999......2000.....2001
By Animal Health Officials...10,576...5,100 ....2,861 .....3,530.....1,425 ....1,967.....2,500
By Private Veterinarians ...15,921...17,100...19,930...18,189...22,863...19,930...19,587
Submissions at Slaughter..........39..........58 .........64...........39...........58..........64.........385
Bovine TB was confirmed in three dairy herds during 2002-2003.[California] ....Although the source of the infections was not confirmed, the investigations indicate TB was most likely imported in infected cattle.... www.cdfa.ca.gov...
“The high prevalence of bovine tuberculosis in Mexican cattle was discussed. A multiagency investigation in New York city identified 35 cases of human M. bovis infection. Fresh cheese from Mexico was identified as the likely source of infection” (Winters et al., 2005). www.nzfsa.govt.nz...
in April 2001, the USDA’s Veterinary Services published an interim rule requiring Mexican feeder steers to originate from herds that had recently been tested for TB. The USDA then agreed to grant waivers to the whole-herd testing...www.boergoats.com...
Cattle crossing facilities on the U.S. side of the border are operated primarily by private firms... at Santa Teresa, NM, Chihuahuan cattle producers [Mexican] operate both sides of the cattle port-of-entry... www.ers.usda.gov...
For Mexican Feeder Cattle in Effect April 1, 2002... Dr. Logan... said, the disease is extremely rare in U.S. herds. How ever, more TB-lesioned cattle are being detected at slaughter, and ear tags indicate that many of these animals are of Mexican origin. www.tahc.state.tx.us...
On May 1, 2007, the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture reported a case of bovine tuberculosis (TB) discovered as a result of slaughter surveillance.... Subsequent testing of the index herd identified a TB- positive cow with a Colorado ID tag... The herd has been depopulated...Bovine TB was last reported in Oklahoma in 1982, and Oklahoma has been classified by the USDA as tuberculosis-free since 1984.
On June 14, 2007, the State of New Mexico confirmed that a dairy herd in Curry County was infected with bovine tuberculosis...Two infected herds were confirmed with TB in late 2002, .
TEXAS ANIMAL HEALTH COMMISSION 2009 – 2013 AGENCY STRATEGIC PLAN
The surveillance element or function is the most intensive of the six functions with respect to resources and personnel. Surveillance includes all activities designed and implemented to identify and locate any possible focus of infection or exposure to diseases of animal/poultry health significance in the livestock, poultry and exotic animal population. TAHC surveys animal populations for possible disease problems by collecting blood samples at livestock markets, on farms or ranches, and at slaughter plants.... Additionally, TAHC foreign animal disease diagnosticians investigate all reports of potential foreign animal diseases in order to achieve early diagnosis of a foreign animal disease, should it be introduced into the state.
USDA is moving toward supporting fewer labs nationwide, with the remaining labs serving as regional labs and supporting larger geographic areas..... If this funding is not maintained, this lab will be closed and the out-of-state samples will not be processed by remaining TAHC laboratories....
The first-point testing program is the “early warning system” for the brucellosis program, enabling detection of infection prior to sale of cattle within the state. With the discontinuation of first-point testing, slaughter testing will become the primary method for brucellosis surveillance. There is a key difference between first-point testing and slaughter testing. An animal identified through first-point testing as possibly infected is alive. This allows the agency to collect additional samples (blood, milk and tissue) and conduct additional diagnostic serologic and culture tests to determine if the animal is in fact infected with Brucella abortus. An animal identified through slaughter testing as possibly infected is no longer living and therefore additional testing of that animal is not possible. As a result, the process to be followed requires the identification of the herd the animal came from and conducting a whole herd test to determine whether or not infection is present in the herd. The traceability back to the original owner or farm of origin is also much higher in a first-point test positive versus a slaughter positive, because the animals are individually identified with permanent identification devices, are identified to an owner at the time of testing and market records improve traceability of the animals. ...
..All states are expected to collaboratively participate in cooperative disease control and eradication programs or face significant animal movement restrictions from USDA and other states. Movement restrictions would significantly reduce the marketability of Texas animals and increase the cost of market access.
[NAFTA and WTO trade agreements impact]
...New national disease control programs, emergency management responsibilities, and trade agreements with foreign countries have a significant impact on TAHC. These new or expanded programs continue to stretch TAHC’s already stressed resources to their limits.
[foreign diseases imported due to trade agreements and the Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures]
...The responsibilities of TAHC have significantly increased as programs for disease control and surveillance have expanded, animal and premises identification systems have been initiated, and participation in emergency planning and response activities impacting animal health require more agency resources. Additionally, new disease challenges are emerging. Some are domestic diseases that are increasing in significance. Others are foreign diseases that may be imported as result of the exponential increases in international importations of animals and animal products. Our industries and our economy are threatened by diseases and pests that heretofore we only read about in disease text books or heard about in lectures....
Since 1999, there have been seven foreign animal diseases diagnosed within the United States (West Nile Virus, Exotic Newcastle Disease, High Pathogenic Avian Influenza, Hemorrhagic Disease of Rabbits, Monkey Pox, Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy, and Wildebeest Associated Malignant Catarrhal Fever). Unfortunately, there does not appear to be an end in sight for outbreaks of foreign or domestic diseases and these diverse activities related to disease control and eradication....