Legislation that would allow farmers to sell raw milk was approved by the Assembly Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee Thursday.
In order to obtain a permit, the bill (A-518) would require an applicant to certify that no growth hormones were used in the production process, post signing that indicates the milk is not pasteurized, allow regular inspections by the state Department of Agriculture, and be in compliance with all applicable dairy laws in New Jersey.
“This legislation gives New Jersey consumers the opportunity to purchase raw milk in our state, instead of traveling to Pennsylvania, New York or the other 37 states which already allow it,” Assemblyman John DiMaio (R-Warren), a co-sponsor of the bill, said. “People throughout the country have been drinking raw milk for generations because they like it or believe it is beneficial. The consumer who goes to a farm to purchase this product is truly on a destination trip – there isn’t a mix-up or confusion about what kind of milk they are buying which could potentially occur if it were sold at a retail outlet.
“Many New Jersey farmers are struggling to survive and giving them the opportunity to market raw milk will save jobs and maintain their livelihood,” DiMaio added. “The legislation provides for the necessary safeguards that establish the standards a licensee must maintain in order to receive a permit and protect the consumer.”
—TOM HESTER SR., NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM