Bill Would Legalize Unpasteurized ‘Raw’ Milk Sales In Iowa

Des Moines, Iowa — A bill eligible for debate in the Iowa Senate would legalize the sale of raw milk at dairy farms.

Esther Arkfeld of Harlan says when she lived in another state, she bought raw milk rather than formula for her baby but found out when she moved to Iowa five years ago it was illegal here.

Raw milk enthusiasts like Arkfeld say unpasteurized milk tastes better and has more nutrients. Critics say raw milk has more bacteria and is dangerous for pregnant women. The dairy industry opposes the bill. Justin LeVan is the secretary of the Iowa Dairy Foods Association, which represents dairy businesses.

Under the senate bill it still would be illegal to sell unpasteurized milk at restaurants and farmers’ markets, but raw milk and other products like cheese, yogurt, and ice cream that are made with unpasteurized milk could be sold legally at the dairy where it’s processed. The Senate approved similar legislation a year ago, but bills to legalize raw milk sales have never been considered in the Iowa House.



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