Organic Consumers Association

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Plight of Wisconsin Farmer Has Implications for Raw Milk Access & Private Food Clubs

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA's Health Raw Milk page and our Wisconsin News page.

Falls Church, Virginia - Wisconsin dairy farmer, Vernon Hershberger of Loganville, has retained the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defence Fund (FTCLDF) to represent him in his upcoming criminal trial on four misdemeanour counts for alleged violations of the Wisconsin food and dairy code. The trial was originally supposed to take place on September 25 in Sauk County Circuit Court in Baraboo but Judge Guy Reynolds has postponed the trial until January 7. The judge has set aside five days for the trial.

Hershberger had been representing himself since the criminal complaint was filed against him in January 2012. FTCLDF vice president and Wisconsin attorney, Elizabeth Rich, will be litigating the case. Rich has over twenty years experience in the Wisconsin courts.

Hershberger has been charged with operating a retail food establishment without a license, operating a dairy farm as a milk producer without a license and violating a holding order issued by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP). The holding order prohibited anyone from removing food products from coolers that had been taped in Hershberger's farm store.

The court's ruling in the Hershberger case could have a huge impact on the availability of raw milk for Wisconsin consumers. DATCP has been attempting to limit consumer access to raw milk, a ruling in Hershberger's favour would be a major setback for the agency.
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