Miller Farms penalized for illegal raw milk drop-offs
Fifteen miles east of San Antonio, Miller Farms’ dairy production has encountered legal troubles. Miller supplies Grade A quality grass-fed raw milk to San Antonio and neighboring areas both via retail sales on the farm and drop off points around town. These drop off locations are usually held at private residences and make acquiring the milk convenient for customers who cannot regularly make trips to the LaCoste farm. Though raw milk is legal to sell in Texas for human consumption, it is illegal to deliver such milk off premises, even if pre-paid.
A tip-off from a drop site’s frustrated neighbor alerted authorities to the off-farm purchasing. Though there was nothing wrong with the milk (as contamination is often assumed of raw dairy), the state temporarily revoked Miller’s license and forced the farm to dump 700 gallons of milk as a penalty. The wasted milk equates to thousands of dollars worth of profit (think $7/gallon) that has now been lost for the small farm.
The dairy’s permits have been reinstated in return for Miller promising not to participate in off-site commerce. However, this limitation in drop-off locations has affected hundreds of San Antonio families who rely on Miller’s milk to feed their families, and who consider it superior in nutrition and taste. Social media has been abuzz the last week with frustrated San Antonio customers, spreading the news in an effort to raise awareness and fight to get the laws changed in the state of Texas. Though participating in off-site commerce is considered illegal, supporters of Miller say this is another example of red tape and technicalities that do not benefit the farmer or consumer. Buyers are fighting for the lawful sale of raw milk both on and off the farm — a win-win for everyone. These raw milk fans are encouraging voters to get in touch with their state representative and push to get HB 46 — a bill that would legalize sales of raw milk at farmers’ markets, drop points, and through delivery sales — passed.
For more information about the raw milk challenge, visit farmandranchfreedom.org