Josh Wolfson at the Star-Tribune, keeping us all updated on the Wyoming Legislature’s consideration of various ill-conceived food regulations, reports that a legislative committee has just killed a bill that would have legalized some sales of raw milk in Wyoming.
The House Agriculture Committee defeated the bill Thursday by a 6-3 vote. Two days earlier, the same committee killed legislation that would have removed government oversight of home-produced foods sold directly to customers.
The raw milk bill would have allowed sales through what are known as "herd-share agreements." Basically, consumers purchase a share of a cow or goat, pay a rancher for a portion of its care, and in return, get some of its milk.
I haven’t seen any excerpts of the committee’s debate, but will assume that the bill went down over concerns about public safety. It was probably bad timing for the bill to be proposed in the first place; first, because 2010 saw at least 15 raw dairy outbreaks or recalls, including the Bravo Farms cheese E. coli outbreak; and second, because Wyoming has already spoken on the issue in the first place. Raw dairy’s recent track-record has given legislators no reason to reconsider the state’s position.