Unpasteurized, “raw” milk is now legal in the state of Georgia for human consumption. Georgia’s legislature successfully passed a bill that allows the sale of unpasteurized, “raw” milk, and it has now been signed into law by Governor Kemp. While Georgians were previously able to purchase raw milk as pet food, sales for human consumption in retail settings and on and off farm were banned.
The new law allows for the sale and delivery of raw milk by a producer directly to the “consuming public for the purpose of human consumption.”
“Producers will need to obtain a permit from the state, and they must also meet various requirements that include periodic inspection of producers’ facilities, regular testing for disease prevention, sampling, labelling and other requirements,” says Alexia Kulwiec, Executive Director for Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund (FTCLDF).
The final text of the law, dubbed the Georgia Raw Dairy Act, or Georgia House Bill 1175, can be found here for those interested in reading its content.
FTCLDF put out a call to action earlier this year asking our Georgia members to get engaged in the process and to share information with lawmakers. Both dairy farmers and consumers communicated the importance of raw milk sales and raw milk access to the viability of small farms, and the health of consumers. Members were also asked to weigh in on how some of the more rigorous testing and inspection details required under the new law might impact producers.
Many of our producer and consumers members attested to the high demand and desire for unpasteurized dairy products and urged passage of the bill.
“This just proves that grassroots advocacy has real value and gets real results,” says Kulwiec. “Congratulations to all who supported this effort, and to producers and consumers in Georgia who will now enjoy expanded access to raw milk.”