Senate Bill 6377, co-sponsored by Sen. Joe Zarelli, R-Ridgefield, would explicitly ban the sale of unpasteurized milk from unlicensed dairies through “cow-share” agreements, says the Columbian.
The bill would close a loophole that allows individuals to purchase one or more “shares” in a milk cow, goat or sheep from an unlicensed dairy in return for a portion of the milk produced.
The bill authorizes the state Department of Agriculture to issue a cease-and-desist order to anyone found selling raw milk without a license. Doing so would be a Class C felony punishable by a fine. The civil penalty would be in addition to any criminal liability a dairy faced as a result of people getting sick from drinking its’ milk.
Eighteen people, including 15 children, were sickened after drinking unpasteurized milk contaminated with E. coli, produced by Dee Creek Farm, an unlicensed dairy.
Oregon as well as 20 other states currently ban the sale of raw milk completely. Transporting raw milk across state lines is also a violation of federal law.