Some like it raw

If you're frustrated by the fact that you can't buy raw milk in Virginia, don't have a cow– buy one!

There's a great article in the Staunton News Leader about how local dairy farmers get around Virginia regulations that ban the sale of raw milk. Basically, multiple folks invest in an actual cow, called a "cow share," and in return they get a gallon of raw milk every week.

While humans have been drinking raw milk for centuries, regulations requiring pasteurization– a heating process that kills bacteria like E. coli and salmonella– became popular during the last century as dairy farms began pumping out milk on a massive scale.

Today, the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control insist raw milk is unsafe. However, local dairy farmers like Nathan Vergin, who was interviewed for the article and operates Silky Cow LLC in Staunton, says that modern technology now makes it easier to provide proper sanitation. Besides, he says, there's more of a risk of getting E. coli and salmonella at fast food joints and restaurant buffets, where food is handled much more frequently, than from a milking cow.

Folks who drink raw milk swear by it. Dish once had a breakfast that included raw milk with farmer Joel Salatin and a documentary filmmaker who claimed that her sickly son was restored to health with the stuff. Salatin swears by it too. And Dish has to admit, it's tasty stuff. 

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