Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Change for Milk and Dairy Labeling?

A recent Federal court ruling dealing with the labeling of milk in Ohio could have far-reaching implications.

Much of our milk comes from cows that have been administered hormones (known as rbGH or rbST), which increases milk production.

Dairy items coming from cows not administered hormones (all organic and some conventional) will surely advertise that, but will also have a statement declaring that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has determined no marked difference between milk derived from cows with or without hormones.

The ruling by the Sixth Circuit of the United States Court of Appeals has two important aspects.

First, the court ruled that Ohio milk can be labeled hormone-free without the usual accompanying disclaimer, completely overturning the Ohio state law that didn’t allow any hormone-free claims at all.

Second, the court countered the FDA’s no-difference-between-milks finding: "[The] evidence precludes us from agreeing with the district court's conclusion that there is no compositional difference between the two types of milk."

For further information about the case and its meaning, read informative articles in Food Safety News and Rodale News.

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