May 4th 2010
John F. Sheehan, Director
Div. of Plant and Dairy Food
Office of Food Safety
Bldg. CPK-1, Rm. 3D-055
5100 Paint Branch
College Park, MD 20740
Dear Mr. Sheehan
I am writing in regards to the investigation of Mr. Daniel Allgyer of Kinzers, PA on allegations of interstate commerce of raw milk. I wish to express my disappointment that the FDA is pursuing this case when there are so many greater threats to public health.
Many of the greatest threats are due to large-scale industrial agriculture, centralized food production and distribution, inadequate testing of new food and pharmaceuticals, and inadequate inspection and enforcement. A few examples: contamination of the food supply with novel substances and organisms, air and water pollution, and loss of ecological and agricultural diversity.
Small, traditional operations like Mr. Allgyer's are part of a robust, diverse, and sustainable agricultural community. The main threats they pose are to those who seek to control and monopolize the food supply.
I do appreciate the need to enforce regulations, but enforcement needs to be fair and even-handed. There also needs to be a willingness to review, and if needed revise or repeal, regulations so that they truly serve the cause of public health, and not the interests of a few large corporations.
The ban on interstate sales of raw milk is restrictive and unfair to consumers and farmers and is a barrier to free enterprise. I am asking my representatives in Congress to support HR 778, which will effectively repeal the ban and free FDA resources for more important activities. In the meantime and under current circumstances, I fully support Mr. Allgyer's decision to not cooperate with this investigation.