Our former colleague and still good friend Ken Odza was in our offices last week; I was in a meeting and just had the chance to say hello.
By pure coincidence, one of Ken’s favorite topics was in the news this week. Ken had written two big pieces on raw milk for this blog, which can be found here and here. Tyler wrote about another development here.
What happened in Oregon is sad: 20 people were apparently sickened in a single outbreak, including four children, and two of the victims may have long-term complications. E.Coli O157:H7 is not fun for anyone.
The real issue, as the article points out, is what the right level of regulation would be. It’s not easy to answer. Drinking raw milk is simply dangerous; it’s like playing Russian roulette without knowing how many chambers are in the gun or how many are filled. Ban it and the users go underground. Legalize it and yes, some bad batches will not be caught by inspectors (this happens with a lot of other foods, too, in case you hadn’t noticed). You can try to educate people about it, but if there’s anything we know now it is that official education on almost any topic will lead to dissent. There’s no perfect solution in a free society.