UPDATE: Senate committee passes raw milk bill

UPDATED Tuesday, November 12, 2013 --- 10:46 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Wisconsin dairy farmers could sell raw milk directly to customers on their farms under a bill that's passed a Senate committee.

The latest version of the raw milk bill passed on a 3-2 vote Tuesday, with all Republicans in support and both Democrats against.

The proposal faces an uncertain future, with the state's dairy industry against it and Gov. Scott Walker expressing reservations. Supporters say raw milk is safe and has health benefits, while opponents say it puts Wisconsin's dairy industry at risk.

The earliest the full Senate is expected to consider it is next year.

The bill would require those wishing to sell raw milk to be registered with the state, undergo stringent testing requirements, and keep a log of all their sales available for inspection by government officials.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press


UPDATED Monday, November 11, 2013 --- 9:00 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A state Senate committee plans to vote on approving a bill that would legalize raw milk sales in Wisconsin, but several obstacles remain to the measure becoming law.

The Senate Financial Institutions and Rural Issues Committee planned a vote Tuesday on the proposal that has bipartisan support. However, the Senate also ends its work for the year on Tuesday, making it unlikely the bill will get a chance at passage until next year.

And even then, its prospects are murky.

Gov. Scott Walker has said he isn't sold on the idea, saying he doesn't want to do anything that would harm Wisconsin's $2.6 billion dairy industry.

Supporters say raw milk is safe and has health benefits, but opponents say not pasteurizing milk is a public health risk.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press


Posted Wednesday, October 2, 2013 --- 12:23 p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Gov. Scott Walker still isn't sold on raw milk.

Walker spoke about his reservations Wednesday when asked about the issue at the World Dairy Expo in Madison. A bill to legalize on-farm raw milk sales in Wisconsin has been introduced in the Legislature and has bipartisan support.

Walker says he will look at the proposal, but he wants to make certain that any consideration revolves around protecting Wisconsin's $2.6 billion dairy industry.

Walker says the effects of legalizing raw milk must be looked at both from the impact on the farm industry and public health concerns.

Supporters of legalizing raw milk sales say it has health benefits and is safe, but opponents say not pasteurizing milk needlessly puts people's health at risk and jeopardizes Wisconsin's dairy industry.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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