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State Ag Departments Banning Hormone-Free Labels on Milk

State Ag Departments Banning Hormone-Free Labels on Milk

Milk suppliers in Pennsylvania can no longer label their milk growth hormone-free.

November 11, 2007 —

A quick glance at milk carton’s label let’s us know if the milk has not been made with artificial bovine hormone (rBGH). If there is a part of the label that says the milk comes from cows who are not fed rBGH, then we know that milk doesn’t have growth hormones in it that could be unsafe to our family’s health. That part of the label is very important to consumers. Now the heads of the agriculture departments in Pennsylvania (with Ohio following suit) are banning milk carton labels that state the milk does not come from rBGH cows.

The rGHB not-in-our-milk health safety movement has picked up momentum over the past few years, with many milk manufactures banning rBGH for their cows. Whole Foods, Trader Joes, Starbucks all of rBGH milk, and some other chains like Kroger, Costco and Publix use hormone-free milk for their house brands. The largest milk bottler, Dean Foods, is instructing its suppliers in certain U.S. regions to move away from growth-hormoned milk.

Monsanto, the manufacture of rBGH, has fought the not-in-our-milk movement. RBGH is approved by the U.S. federal government, but is illegal in many countries. Dennis Wolf, a former dairy farmer and now head of the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, has not only banned the hormone-free labeling, but also the pesticide-free and antibiotic-free labeling.

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