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Posted at 04:01 PM ET, 05/16/2011

Raw-milk advocates have a cow on Capitol Hill


Leah Mack of Union Bridge, Md., milks a cow across from the Capitol at a protest in favor of raw milk. (By James Buck/The Washington Post)
Boy, that grass growing outside the U.S. Capitol tastes sweet. And so does the unpasteurized milk from the cow who got to sample the federal greenery Monday — at least according to the raw-milk advocates who brought the dairy cow to the District.

Grassfed on the Hill, a private buying club whose members purchase raw milk directly from a farm in Pennsylvania, led a protest Monday
Charlie Syski, 7, of Brookville, Md., wants his raw milk! (By James Buck/The Washington Post)
against the Food and Drug Administration for targeting their supplier, farmer Dan Allgye r. The group milked a dairy cow they brought onto the lawn across the street from Congress, then drank a toast of the still-warm milk.

What’s their beef? Raw milk sales are banned in Maryland, Virginia and D.C. Fans of the untreated stuff set up a cooperative distribution network to get the dairy drink to the metro region, but transporting uncured milk across state lines is a crime, says the Justice Department.

The FDA warns that raw milk can contain dangerous bacteria, including salmonella and e. coli.

That didn’t stop Grassfed members from bringing gallons of raw milk in coolers to pass out to thirsty rally-goers on the lawn, who grabbed the plastic cups faster than they could be filled by volunteers.

Advocates said they like knowing where their food comes from, and some believe raw milk can help people with a range of health issues such as allergies and gastrointestinal problems.
Volunteers at the rally gave out samples of raw milk. (By James Buck/The Washington Post)

Take our poll and tell us whether you’d drink raw milk, and tell us why or why not in the comments below.

By James Buck  |  04:01 PM ET, 05/16/2011

 
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