Last updated on 2 April 2014

Video of raw milk event now available online

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The Food Standards Agency’s consultation event on the future of raw milk regulation is now available as a video-on-demand. The event, which was chaired by broadcaster Julian Worricker, was held yesterday, 31 March 2014. It was streamed live online.

31 March 2014 Raw milk event
Click here for the raw milk webinar video-on-demand
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The meeting was organised to discuss the future of raw milk regulations in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and was part of the consultation running until the end of April 2014. More than 140 people gathered in central London to take part in the discussion and hear speakers including representatives of the FSA, raw milk producers and consumers, Dairy UK and scientists. A range of presentations given at the event can be found via the links below.

Speaker biographies

Steve Wearne – Director of Policy, Food Standards Agency

Steve Wearne was appointed Director of Food Safety in July 2013, the role becoming Director of Policy two months later. Previous to this he was Director of FSA Wales. Steve is a scientist by training, with a degree in biochemistry and a spell of postgraduate research in molecular biology. Steve joined the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food in 1990 and held a range of posts in food science and food policy development, before transferring to the Food Standards Agency when it was launched in 2000. His first post in the Agency was head of the Private Office and Private Secretary to the first Chair of the FSA, Sir John Krebs (now Lord Krebs).

Philip Ridley – Campaign for Real Milk

Philip Ridley is a representative for The Weston A Price Foundation, which campaigns for ‘wise traditions in food, farming and healing.’ The foundation says it is dedicated to restoring nutrient dense foods to diets and is concerned about ‘malnutrition from modern processed foods’. The Campaign for Real Milk is a project of the foundation. It campaigns for full fat un-homogenised unpasteurised milk from grass fed cows produced under regulated conditions.

Professor Sarah O'Brien – Advisory Committee on the Microbiological Safety of Food (ACMSF)

Professor Sarah O'Brien was appointed to the ACMSF in 2001. A Consultant in Public Health Medicine, she is currently Professor of Infection Epidemiology and Zoonoses at the University of Liverpool. Her research interests include foodborne zoonoses. Previously she was Head of Gastrointestinal Diseases Division at the Health Protection Agency Centre for Infections where she was responsible for assessing data and generating, through surveillance and research, the evidence base for the origins and spread of gastrointestinal infection. She has published widely on these subjects. Sarah is also a member of the Food Standards Agency's Epidemiology of Foodborne Infections Group.

Peter Campbell-McBride – raw milk consumer

Peter is an engineer who spent the last twenty years before retirement working with medical imaging systems, principally MRI, CT, and Ultrasound. He and his family have been raw milk drinkers for over ten years. Peter now supports his wife’s work as a medical doctor, who has been published worldwide on the combined effect of digestive function and neurological conditions, presenting at many international conferences. Peter has also been involved with raw milk regulations in the USA.

Steve Hook – Partner, Hook and Son

The Hook family have been farming for over 250 years. Steve and his father Philip run a 70-cow organic dairy herd and started selling unpasteurized milk in 2007. Today, they sell all of their milk as unpasteurized milk, cream and butter, via two local doorstep rounds, eight farmers markets in London, and via the internet. Hook and Son supply nearly half of England’s current raw milk market, and now employ 17 people. Steve’s family and farm life was featured in the recent documentary film The Moo Man released in 2013.

Debbie Vernon – Ellie’s Dairy

Debbie Vernon and David Shannon founded Ellie’s Dairy in 2004. They started with three goats and now have around 400 animals of which around 200 are adult milking goats. The company is based on the North Kent Downs and is thought to be the largest producer of bottled raw goat’s milk in the country. David is from a dairy and beef cattle farming family, Debbie was an archivist and IT manager. Although not certified organic, Debbie says they farm ‘ traditionally’ and work to the highest standards of responsible and ethical farming. She says they believe in raising their animals in as natural an environment as possible.

Luisa Candido – Dairy UK

Luisa is the Nutrition and Technical Manager at Dairy UK. Her main responsibility is providing legislative and regulatory updates to dairy producers and she leads on industry responses regarding technical issues. Luisa is also in charge of coordinating Dairy UK’s position on nutritional matters within the European Union and she is a member of a number of committees within the European Dairy Association and the International Dairy Federation. She is currently conducting Dairy UK’s response on the review of raw milk controls. Before joining Dairy UK Luisa worked for the Food and Agriculture Organization as a supervisor of the Food Security and Nutrition Forum. She has a BSc in Nutrition from King’s College London and is a registered Associate Nutritionist.