Step 1. Find your elected representative at the above link. Call the number for their DC office and ask to speak to their staffer who handles agriculture issues. If that staff person is busy, ask for their email address. Also leave a message with the staffer who answers the phone stating that you support the letter from Reps Smucker and Pingree and that you would like Rep ____________ to sign on as well.
Step 2. Once you have the email address for the staffer responsible for agriculture issues, please email them asking them to sign onto the letter. Use the sample letter and talking points below. The deadline for signers is Wednesday May 23rd. Request a response. Make sure to include your address in your email to the office.
Step 3. Follow up with a phone call the next day if possible.
Background: On April 26, 2017 the Real Food Consumer Coalition filed a citizen petition with FDA in support of exempting raw milk farmers from regulatory enforcement if they provided a clear warning label and instructions for milk pasteurizations. The FDA to this date has failed to complete the request review. It is concerning that the federal government continues to interfere with consumers’ freedom of choice by prohibiting the interstate sale of raw milk products.
Reps. Smucker (R-PA) and Pingree (D-ME) are circulating a letter to FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb that encourages the agency to use enforcement discretion before the agency prosecutes farmers and consumers for the interstate transportation and sale of raw milk.
The letter clearly expresses how Americans should have the freedom of choice to drink raw milk.
This Congressional attention will hopefully expedite the FDA's attention to the issue and urge them into a favorable ruling on the petition.
Sample letter and talking points for your emails to Representatives (please change names and language as fitting for your Rep):
Today, I would like to bring to your attention something that is important to me. This involves consumer food choices. I am with the Real Food Consumer Coalition (RFCC). Last year, the RFCC filed a Citizen's Petition requesting a change to FDA policy. To summarize the issue:
1.) The FDA has chosen aggressive and selective enforcement against the interstate transportation of fresh milk. This disproportionately affects small scale, family farmers and the people and families who depend on the products from these farmers. It negatively affects a wide and diverse segment of Americans.
2.) The only way to change the enforcement against small dairy farms is to change the policy. Please see the April 2017 Citizen's Petition (attached) requesting that change in FDA policy.
3.) Since the FDA has not answered the petition to change this policy, Congressman Lloyd Smucker from PA and Congresswoman Chellie Pingree from Maine have written a letter to the FDA asking for them to rule in favor of the petition. See the letter attached.
As a constituent, I am requesting that ____________________ join as a signer on the letter.
Please find attached a one-page petition summary, the full petition and the draft letter from Reps Smucker and Pingree asking for the FDA to review the petition.
We are still looking for more Congressional signers to add to the letter..
Should you wish to sign on to the letter, or have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out to Liz Reitzig at RFCC by email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (301) 807-5063. Thank you for your consideration!
I can be reached at (555) 555-5555 if you would like to discuss why this issue is so important to me as your constituent.
Thank you for your consideration and support!