Skim milk means that all the milk fat, or cream, has been removed from the milk. That understanding is rather universal amongst dairy farms and consumers, which is why a ruling by a Florida judge has been seen as surprising, to say the least.
In 2012, a Calhoun County, Florida third generation dairy farm was told to either begin injecting Vitamin A into their dairy cows, or lose the “skim milk” label. In this case, they’d have to call their milk “imitation” milk. Ocheesee Creamery made a federal case out of what they felt was untruthful labeling. However, a district court judge rendered the rule fair and just on behalf of the states and federal government. In other words, the state or the federal government has every right to firmly request Vitamin A injections and to remove “skim” labels and replace them with “imitation” for any offending creameries. This flies in the face of the very definition of “skim milk,” of which they note and assert that they simply don’t care. According to wctv.tv, the Creamery plans to appeal again. “You would think if they want truth in labeling, then that is the truth. It is skim milk at its purest form,” said Ocheesee Creamery’s Heather Falb.
The ruling comes more than seven months after the case was argued in Tallahassee’s federal court.ADVERTISEMENT
“We are pleased with the judge’s ruling as this case has always been about ensuring consumers know the nutritional value of the products that they are buying and feeding to their families,” said Florida Department of Agriculture Spokesperson Jenn Meale.
The jersey cows on this 160 acre farm are milked twice a day.
Right now the creamery dumps out as much as 400 gallons of skim milk a day because its forbidden to sell it “as is.”
The Ocheesee Creamery and its attorney tell us they intend to appeal to a higher court.
“Hopefully that will turn out differently than this one did, but we’ll have to wait and see,” Falb said.
Ocheesee attorney Justin Pearson says the creamery will appeal to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta.
This is an egregious failure in the world of labeling. In simple terms, the original label for “skim” is absolutely correct. A lack of a Vitamin A injection most certainly does not render the cow’s milk as “imitation.” We are going bad places fast these days.