(Toronto – October 10, 2011) Michael Schmidt has been fighting since 1994 for the right of men, women and children in Ontario to drink raw milk. He is the founder of Cow Share Canada, which provides health standards for raw milk production, and which lays down some of the most stringent hygiene standards.
Over the last 17 years he has made every effort to co-operate with the authorities to find a solution for the legalization of raw milk in Ontario and Canada. Yet, despite this, his farm was raided in 1994 and again in 2006 (25 armed officers stormed in and terrorized the entire farm family.)
Acquitted on all charges by Justice Kowarsky in 2010, the Province of Ontario subsequently decided to appeal the acquittal and Justice Tetley found Schmidt guilty September 28 2011 on 15 of the 19 charges.
In addition, Fraser Health in British Columbia has filed to find Michael in contempt of court and impose a $55,000 fine (case to be heard November 2nd 2011).
On September 29, in the face of continued persecution by the Provincial governments for his “crime” of believing that informed consumers should be able to choose what they eat and drink, Michael Schmidt started the Hunger Strike for Responsible Food Freedom.
Michael Schmidt has stopped consuming any food and now only drinks water. His demands are simple.
“I respectfully ask that the Ontario and BC governments agree to a constructive dialogue on how we can provide a framework to enable people to make real choices about their food and what they eat, beginning with raw milk and the implementation of a framework that grants legal standing for cow share operations in Ontario and BC. This objective also includes the end of the current prosecutions of cow shares which meet proper production standards.”
Farmers around the country who believe, as Michael does, that people and not governments, should choose the food they consume, have joined the raw milk fight over the years. These farmers are in real danger today and many of them risk losing everything.
Currently eight people have joined Michael on this Hunger Strike for Responsible Food Freedom:
-Max Kane, Wisconsin (in court many times for his work supporting raw milk farmers)
-Vernon Hershberger, Wisconsin (raw milk farmer also a victim of several Government raids)
-Bernie Cosgrove, Alberta (farmer)
-And five others who do not want to be named are participating in this Hunger Strike for Responsible Food Freedom.
There is also a large group in Toronto who are on a rotational fasting in support and respect to Michael Schmidt and others on this Hunger Strike For Responsible Food Freedom.
The movement is growing. More people in Canada and the US are joining every day. And they are determined that the government will not tell them what they can eat.
For up to the minute info and posts from Michael Schmidt and supporters visit: http://thebovine.wordpress.com/