13 Dec 2012

Govt may allow increased farm gate sales of raw milk

1:51 pm on 13 December 2012

The Government has decided that farm gate sales of raw milk can continue and it's likely to increase the amount of unpasteurised milk that can be bought directly from farmers.

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has been considering changes to the rules under the Food Act which allows people to buy up to five litres of raw milk from farmers for their own use or to give to their family.

MPI received nearly 1700 submissions, most supporting an increase in the limit and for raw milk sales to also be available off the farm.

Food Safety Minister Kate Wilkinson says she has asked MPI to do further work, including scientific risk analysis, on increasing the daily farm gate limit.

She says farmers will also be exempt from the current requirement to have a costly Risk Management Programme for farm gate sales of raw milk, but they will have to meet animal health and hygiene requirements.

Mark Houston, chief executive of raw milk supplier Village Milk in Golden Bay, says the minister and her officials should be congratulated, especially for considering allowing sales off the farm.