Monday, May 3, 2010

To Pasteurize or Not to Pasteurize?

Here is an article from Sustainable Food highlighting the controversy over raw milk. The article doesn't really come down on either side of the battle lines. I'm not sure where I fall on the argument either. I don't buy raw milk, but I've tried it once or twice. I haven't heard any arguments for raw milk that make me feel compelled to regularly risk the potential pathogens lurking within. However, I'm in no rush to make the sale of raw milk illegal. We allow raw chicken to be sold and let consumers make their own decisions about how to deal with the (much more significant) health risks it involves. I'm not sure why milk should be any different. What do you think?


  1. I'm all about choices, too many choices are already being taken away in this country. If they want to drink it raw I think it's great. I mean breastmilk is raw!

  2. Raw milk contains friendly acid-forming bacteria that retards the growth of pathogenic bacteria. Pasteurized milk, on the other hand, reduces all microorganisms. Contamination after pasteurization allows pathogens to thrive. Raw milk sours safely. Remember all the old recipes calling for sour milk? Our great grandmothers knew all about it.

    Then there is nutrition. Anyone interested in that? The enzymes in raw milk are all available. In pasteurized milk, less than 10% are available. The calcium in pasteurized milk is not even available to us because the enzyme, phosphatase is so greatly reduced that our bodies cannot absorb the calcium. I could go on and on.... Loyce

  3. "However, I'm in no rush to make the sale of raw milk illegal." If you ever supported that, Mom/Loyce would never let you into our house again.

  4. I am all about choices too, Amy. My personal choice has thus far always been non-homogenized pasteurized milk (from local, organic, grass-fed cows/goats) mainly because raw milk makes me nervous. I'd be equally nervous about non-pasteurized breastmilk from a stranger.

    I'm open to being convinced otherwise. Can you direct me to more sources of information on this, Merry?