Organic Crime: The Raw Milk Underground

Hey you, yeah you. Pssst. Over here. We’ve got some milk. Yeah, the good stuff. Unpasteurized. Shhh. Keep it down, the FDA is listening.

The Brooklyn Paper is reporting (sort of) on their aborted attempt to infiltrate Brooklyn’s raw milk underground. Why underground? Because it’s illegal to transport raw milk across state lines with intent to sell it for human consumption. Why?

An FDA report on illnesses caused by raw milk over the last five years says there have been 18 “outbreaks” of bacterial illness involving raw milk or raw milk cheeses in 15 states. Those outbreaks have sickened 451 people, a few of those seriously enough to be hospitalized. The report lists types of bacteria that might be found in raw milk, including campylobacter, escherichia, listeria, salmonella, yersina and brucella. It also lists diseases raw milk products can cause, such as tuberculosis, diphtheria, polio, strep throat, scarlet fever and typhoid fever.

But don’t let that dissuade you, the Brooklyn Papers would be informant, “Deep Milk”, maintains that the pasteurization process kills a bunch of the healthy stuff along with the horrible diseases. Heaven forbid.

Sadly, just as the paper was about to pull back the curtain on the seedy (but well-nourished) milk underground “Deep Milk” got cold feet:

“I am really sorry for wasting your time,” she said, claiming she got orders from the top. “But we can’t help you anymore at the risk of the government finding out, so the story can’t run at all.”

Tony Soprano? Is that you?—MEGHANN MARCO

Organic crime in Bay Ridge [Brooklyn Papers via Brooklyn Record]
(Photo: Matt Browne)