‘Rules, rules, rules and paper trails’
‘‘They're taking commonsense away by regulation, I'm sick and tired of being told what I can and can't do’’
The ‘‘rules, rules, rules and paper trails’’ involved with testing and regulation will force a popular raw milk vendor to close just eight months after opening.
Customers ranging from older people looking for a nostalgic hit to younger people who can’t believe how different raw milk tastes, buy about 100 litres a day from a vending machine near Carterton.
Sadly for these people the service will close on Friday, September 22.
Operators Renee and Dave Smith said the amount of regulation and testing needed made it unfeasible to continue providing the raw product.
Renee Smith said there was an update of regulations and guidelines around raw milk production just before they started their operation in January but they thought they would be fine coping with the rule changes.
But the paperwork and expense involved, when added to their standard dairying operation, ended up taking a toll on their quality of life.
They soon found they were missing out on time with their children and also sometimes not even able to get a day off, she said.
‘‘It got to the point we were doing far more work on it than it was worth. We just wanted to give people a choice but it ended up becoming too difficult. We are as sad about having to close it as everyone else.
‘‘The costs got higher as well. I received a $1000 bill today that I wasn’t expecting, everything has come to rules, rules, rules and paper trails.’’
Customer Jim Upward was sad to hear the news because since the raw milk vendor had opened he had become used to having proper milk again.
Milk processed in factories was put through processes that completely changed it from what it was when it came out of the cow, he said.
‘‘They’re taking commonsense away by regulation, I’m sick and tired of being told what I can and can’t do. This was innovative, and gave people a choice. I congratulated them when they started it off, really disappointed.’’
A Ministry of Primary Industries spokeswoman said the regulations were to better manage the health risks of raw milk.
Renee Smith said running the raw milk vending machine became too time consuming and costly.