This is a letter I am sending around to local and state politicians. If you are of a similar mind please feel free to do the same.
To get you started, here's the link to Pataki's comment section (I will be adding more names shortly):
Please enter the requested info and cut and paste this into the comments section (changing the signature to your own). For other politicians please
1. Cut and paste it to your own email.
2. Change "Governor Pataki" to the politicians name.
3. Change the signature to your name and address.
4. Send it all over the world and make food a little better.
Dear Governor Pataki:
For all the benefits of living in New York City, there some exchanges we make in order to coexist in a place with such a concentration of people. I think foremost among them would be how many of us live without cars or even easy access to a car. Because almost everything you could ever want is findable in one of the five boroughs this is seldom a big dilemma. However, the current state of laws and policies regarding raw milk in New York State have created a special situation that I think our legislators need to address.
Currently it is only legal to purchase raw whole milk and its products in New York from licensed farmers on their farms. Although I am sure this works fine for people outside the city, it essentially keeps most of us that live here from being able to procure these products. Because of this special situation, I propose enlarging the scope of the law that allows licensed farms to sell raw milk on their farm to include their stands at our established farmers' markets.
Because many New Yorkers cannot get to farms to buy produce, a system of very strong farmers' markets exists. Greenmarket, a program of the Council on the Environment of NYC, works in conjunction with the Mayor's office of New York and maintains a very efficient system for regional farmers to get their wares to those of us who would not otherwise be able to get to the farms.
Were the law to see these established stands as an extension of the farm and allow the licensed farmers to sell their raw milk legally within city limits we would no longer be deprived this legal right by situation.
The truth is the laws and policies of the United States and the State of New York are creating circumstances in which the largest percentage of milk available to the public is a hollow shell of the nutritious product it once was. These laws are born of a laziness inherent to American policy that says, "milk is dangerous if improperly handled and people motivated by apathy and profit will inevitably mishandle it, therefore better to strip it of nutrition and taste than insure that producers do their job." This all should be addressed going forward and will be when the current state of affairs gets in the larger public conscience.
At this point, there is a group of small, local farmers, properly producing milk. By making it possible for them to sell to those of us in the city who want to buy, you would be encouraging the local economy, encouraging the more healthful methods of farming lost on the factory farms currently producing the milk available to us, and expand one of the few areas local farmers have that is actually making them some money. I see expanding the current raw milk policies to include farmers' market sales as a simple change that is win win all around. I very much hope you will take the time to look at it and see how much this simple little change could improve the quality of life of many of your constituents.
Thank you for your time.
a helpful map with links to your State Senators: http://www.senate.state.ny.us/Senatorbio.nsf/Public_NYCMap?openform