Updates–Water and Milk in the Raw

I grew up on a farm long ago in an age when everything seemed raw. We’d play in creeks, drink from bubbling springs, and squirt milk from our Guernsey’s udder straight at an unsuspecting brother’s face. But times have changed. Water quality is a major issue and the types sold in plastic bottles range from Aqua Fina to Zephyrhills. And while milk might come in long-recognized cartons such as Anderson Erickson, other names like Organic Valley have moved in–and apparently someone found a way to squeeze “milk” from almonds and coconuts.

Debates about nutrition, labeling, and cost have heated up also, and if you’re like many of us, it is sometimes hard to figure it all out. These links might give you some insight, but many more opinions and news releases are available. As always, we recommend that you look to science and the most credible sources possible.

Raw Water, Raw Deal?

A new drinking water trend is sparking debate–some people are dropping bottled water for natural, untreated spring water known as “raw water.” Proponents tout it as healthy and “spiritual.” Opponents warn of health dangers and high costs. As this report points out, some drink the water to avoid chlorine and other chemicals. This overview quotes those who are “weary of tap water,” but this editorial dismisses the trend as “wacko” and says the term “raw diarrhea” might be more appropriate.

Does Raw Milk Leave a Cool Mustache?

The latest skirmish on the raw milk scene came in New Jersey recently when the “raw milk moms” were ordered to stop using the product. Some states outlaw the sale of raw milk, and as you might imagine, opinions vary about safety, nutrition, and free choice. This site touts the benefits of the unprocessed product, and this site cites the dangers of drinking it.

Note: A forthcoming CAST issue paper will look objectively and factually at this issue: Scientific Evidence for the Risks and Benefits of Raw Milk.

Related blogs: This past entry looks at water issues and the pasture creeks that kids used for swimming, fishing, and dam building. This past entry considers the modern cow–with Fitbits and robotic stalls–and the hand-milked cows that knew how to kick and swing their mud-tinged tails.

by dan gogerty (top pic from rxflyfishing.jpg, cartoon from ifunny.mobi, and cat pic from pbs.twing.com)

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