Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

Local News

March 4, 2013

Local dairy farmers support bill to bring raw milk to area markets

MIXON — A local dairy owner who is a certified raw milk provider calls a recently filed bill to expand options for selling unpasteurized milk in Texas “a good thing,” adding health guidelines also would needed to be implemented to ensure a safe product.

“It would be a real good thing if (House Bill 46) would pass, because farmers could sell raw milk at farmers' markets or deliver it to our customers,” said Mark Ganske, owner of the Way Back When Dairy in Mixon. “But (legislators) are going to have to make regulations (to meet health and safety concerns).”

State Rep. Dan Flynn of Canton, recently filed the bill during the legislation's early filing period. State Sen. Bob Duell, of Greenville, filed a raw milk bill during the 2011 session but it did not get a committee hearing, according to the Texas Tribune.

Ganske's family started the dairy in 1948 and began offering raw milk to their clients nearly a decade ago. They also were into the large-scale commericial side of dairy farming, selling pasteurized milk until last fall, when Ganske said they sold their commercial herd.

Now, the dairy focuses on providing raw milk, cream and, by April, butter.

“We're getting quite a few people coming in now, they've learned that we're back open after sold we sold our commercial herd,” Ganske said. “We've also been told that they come by because they heard our radio ad, and there's word of mouth bringing people in.”

Last summer, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a letter on the ongoing public health hazard of consuming raw milk.

“The role of raw milk and other unpasteurized dairy products in the transmission of infectious diseases is well-documented,” said the CDC, describing how the pasteurization process heats milk to a certain temperature to kill disease-causing bacteria.

“Raw milk was recognized as a source of severe infections over 100 years aog, and pasteurization of milk to prevent these infections is one of the public health triumphs of the 20th century,” it said.

The government gives “a lot of precaution,” Ganske said, but conscientious raw milk providers understand the need to provide a safe environment.

His products are Grade A certified, because “we have a state inspector visit our facilities twice a month,” to meet health standards, he said.

If the proposed raw milk bill can also “control (health and safety issues) so that fresh, raw milk is available to the public, it'd be a great thing. Because they need to manage testing of milk somehow so that there is no (bacterial) outbreak,” Ganske said.

While older generations in the area may recall drinking milk straight from the cow, it's not something their grandchildren have experienced, because the government is fully behind pasteurization of dairy products.

“I just wish the younger generation could have that opportunity, too,” he said.

HB 46 remains pending before the House Public Health Committee.

Text Only
Local News
  • Bullard group rallies behind alcohol petition

    A petition calling for a city-wide city election this November that would make all areas of Bullard wet, including those which fall in Cherokee County, has proven successful, as more than the required 221 signatures have been collected.

    July 19, 2014

  • mom and kids_6776.tif Jacksonville woman celebrates 100th birthday surrounded by family, friends

    Ethel Terry, a lifelong resident of Jacksonville, celebrated her 100th birthday with an open house on July 15 at the Twin Oaks Care Facility in Jacksonville.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cemetery grass.tif Extra rainfall produces more abundant lawns, extends hay season

    Steady periods of rain this summer have been a homeowner's dream, as lawns appear more lush than in previous years.
    But for city workers, that same growth has taken on nightmarish proportions.
    “It's a maintenance nightmare,” said Ben Briley, director of the City of Jacksonville Parks and Recreation Department.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cherokee County arrests: July 8-14

    The Daily Progress will publish a list of arrests from the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office on a weekly basis.

    July 19, 2014

  • Detective recovers nearly $7K in case

    When a Jacksonville woman became a victim of a scam, Jacksonville Police Detective Greg Compton stopped at nothing to solve the case.
    In early January, Compton said a neighbor of a 94-year-old woman reported that someone had “taken advantage of her.”

    July 17, 2014

  • Bullard ISD names interim leader

    During a meeting Monday night, the Bullard ISD Board of Trustees appointed Joe Dan Lee as Interim Superintendent.

    July 17, 2014

  • City to continue summer mosquito spraying schedule

    Next week, the City of Jacksonville will continue implementing its summer mosquito spraying program.

    July 17, 2014

  • 18wheelerWreck 0715.tif Double 18-wheeler wreck snarls morning traffic

    No injuries were reported Monday morning after an 18-wheel tractor-trailer bore the brunt of damage when it collided with a logging truck in front of it, according to Jacksonville Police officer Matthew Odom. The wreck occurred at the intersection of Jackson and Canada streets.

    July 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Heart transplant David.tif Jacksonville man recovering after life-saving transplant

    A Jacksonville man is on the road to recovery after a life-saving heart transplant, according to his wife.
    On July 2, David Woods received a new heart from an unknown donor. The surgery took about six hours, and he remained in the intensive care unit for four days afterwards, said his wife, Paula Woods.

    July 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • County changes speed on 4 roads

    Speed limits along four Cherokee County roads were set to 35 miles per hour following a public hearing Monday at the County Courthouse.
    Commissioners voted to lower the speed per request of residents living along CR 4910, CR 4911, CR 4912 and CR 4918, despite the fact that no one showed up for the public hearing, said County Judge Chris Davis.

    July 15, 2014