Morningland Dairy Raw Milk Cheese



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Rebuttal/Remedy Response to Milk Board, & Press Release - Oct. 6, 2010

Posted by morninglanddairy on October 6, 2010 at 6:16 PM Comments comments (1380)

Dear Morningland customers, friends, et al,

On Friday, October 1st, 2010, Morningland Dairy received from the Missouri State Milk Board several memorandums and a letter that ordered the destruction of ALL of Morningland's cheese. Today we are sending a formal but brief objection to several of the statements made in these memorandums and the destroy order, as well as a proposed remedy. We have also issued a press release and are contacting the appropriate governmental agents with all of this information and asking them for their assistance.

**Please go to the Recall Information page to see the full Rebuttal/Remedy letter.** Below is the press release:

=====================FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE===================

Contact: Doreen Hannes 417 962 0030/ email:

Date: October 6th 2010

Subject: Family Run Dairy Ordered to Destroy 50,000 Pounds of Cheese

Subheading: Battle Over Raw Dairy Products Has a New Epicenter

Morningland Dairy has issued an objection to the Missouri Milk Board’s “order to destroy” their inventory of raw aged cheese. The cheese is being held on their property under an embargo issued by the Missouri Milk Board on August 26th, 2010. The embargo on all Morningland’s product was issued in response to tests done by the California Department of Food and Agriculture on cheese seized in a raid on Rawesome Foods in Venice, Ca. on June 30th. The embargo halted all production and sales of Morningland cheese.

Missouri Milk Board gave Morningland a verbal order of destruction on September 24th. Joseph Dixon, owner and General Manager of Morningland, then requested that Gene Wiseman, Executive Secretary of the Missouri Milk Board, provide written notice of the order to destroy and the method of destruction. Wiseman wrote the order to destroy on October 1st and it was hand delivered by Don Falls of the Missouri Milk Board to Morningland Dairy on October 1st, but it did not include the destruction procedures.

Denise Dixon, owner and General Manager of Morningland Dairy says, “Morningland has been producing raw aged cheese for 30 years, and in that time, absolutely no reports of illness have been made by anyone who has consumed our product. We are, and remain, wholly committed to providing good, healthful food to our customers. The order to destroy 50,000 or so pounds of our cheese is not associated with even one complaint of illness, and we believe it’s an over reaction at best.”

In their objection to the destruction order, Morningland offers a remedy based on sound and verifiable scientific testing. Denise Dixon says, “It is our hope that reason and common sense will prevail. Until that happens, it appears that the State of Missouri and the FDA are more interested in putting us out of business than allowing consumers to have a choice in their food.”

At this point there is no written assurance from the Missouri Milk Board indicating that Morningland will be allowed to resume production or distribution of their products.



Thank you for your continued prayers,

Joseph, Denise, Jedadiah and Morningland families

"DESTROY IT ALL" - September 24, 2010

Posted by morninglanddairy on September 24, 2010 at 10:29 AM Comments comments (122)


There have never been any illnesses in our 30 years of production, and thus far none of the authorities has done confirmed testing on our cheese. Our cheese that was allegedly tested in California had been in California for well over 4 months, and no-one seems to know how it was handled for 7 weeks between being placed in an un-iced cooler (when it was confiscated) and when it was allegedly tested. We understand that by California statutes, confiscated food is supposed to be tested right away, and that  we were supposed to have our own sample to test ourselves, but neither of these things was done. The FDA did test our cheese plant and milk barn by taking 100 swabs from equipment, walls, the floor, etc., and having them tested, and they found nothing. But now our inspector has told us that we must destroy ALL of the 1000's of pounds of cheese we still have in order to get back into business.   We said that before selling any of our cheese, we would have it tested, batch by batch, to confirm that it is good, but we were told that the cheese would still be 'suspect'.  We asked them, "Then, what good IS the testing?"  No reply.

We now wait for the written order from the Missouri Milk Board.

September 19, 2010 - How You Can Help

Posted by morninglanddairy on September 19, 2010 at 9:56 PM Comments comments (5)

Dear Customers, Friends, et al,

Thank you for your offers to help. First and foremost: Pray to the one, true God in heaven for His truth and righteousness. Second, call your congressmen, your state senators, and your local officials and ask them why drugs, genetically modified foods, big corporations who are massive polluters, and dairies that pump animals with hormones and antibiotics, etc. have government approval, while small companies like ours who try hard to make a healthful product from healthy animals, and who have harmed no-one, can be shut down as the result of one obviously faulty test. It appears that we are being targeted for the use of raw milk. How can it be that the government has the right to choose what we eat?

Thanks, again,

Joseph, Denise, Jedadiah, and our Morningland Dairy families

2 Chronicles 7:14 - If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.


Posted by morninglanddairy on September 17, 2010 at 6:41 PM Comments comments (4)

Dear Customers, Friends, et al,

The embargo on our cheese still remains.  Two FDA officials came again to Morningland yesterday (Thursday) and closed their investigation, but informed us, at the same time, of their plans to open a new investigation next week. One FDA official informed us that, despite the ongoing embargo of our cheese, that the FDA had been given permission to remove cheese for testing purposes on Thursday.  When we explained that we had made the decision to have all of (at least) our present cheese tested before shipping, and that, due to the embargo, we could not do testing yet and therefore we have no cheese to sell at present, the FDA agent threatened to note our reply as a refusal and said that forceful action might then be taken.  After phone calls were exchanged between the agent and her superiors, the agent informed us that testing of our cheese would be done at a later date.


No cheese producing, no cheese sales, because we are still on hold...


Thank you for your continued prayers, patience, and support.


Joseph, Denise, Jedadiah, Morningland employees and families

Sept. 14, 2010 - Recall Info - GOOD NEWS

Posted by morninglanddairy on September 14, 2010 at 6:54 PM Comments comments (2)

Dear Morningland customers, friends, et al,

This morning we received a verbal declaration from an FDA official that all swabs used to test our cheese plant and our milk barn came back negative (meaning CLEAN.)  :)

This was an official environmental test. 

September 13th, 2010 Recall info - ?

Posted by morninglanddairy on September 13, 2010 at 1:24 AM Comments comments (2)

This is to let folks know that we are still waiting to learn something new about our recall situation. Results from the testing done by FDA on our cheese plant and our milk barn are not yet available. As for the meaning of the 'weakly positive' results, we do not know, and are asking for an explanation, too. ‘Wish we could say more.

September 12th, 2010

Posted by morninglanddairy on September 12, 2010 at 8:37 PM Comments comments (1)

Well, for a little GOOD news! :)


We have been having wonderful cooler weather and RAIN!  Everything has greened back up nicely and we have been able to stop feeding hay and allow the cows to graze again. 


We are only milking 20 cows at the moment as the rest are dry, preparing to calve.   So if we are forced into a downtime, its a good time for it I guess.  Thanks everyone for hanging in there with us.


The calving started yesterday as #56 (a very good little crossbred cow), gave us a beautiful little heifer calf.  Very spunky little thing!  #56 had a heifer in 2008 who is herself preparing to calve at any time.  If she is anything like her mother, she will be nice.


Here is the new addition to our herd.  Born yesterday, pictures taken tonight.  You can see the attitude just radiating from her. ;)




Sept. 7, 2010

Posted by morninglanddairy on September 7, 2010 at 11:04 AM Comments comments (60)

Dear Morningland Customers, Friends, et al,

We have received our lab results on the 14 private samples we sent in, showing "99% weakly positive" for Listeria monocytogenes on 5 of the samples, and 1 sample that tested "weakly positive" and "positive". We have since realized that when we took the samples we may have cross contaminated. No official tests have been taken to date. No matter what clean results we get back at this time, all the cheese is still considered suspect, since, according to one state official, "These pathogens are always present, just not always detectable." This has been the apparent route taken by officials since Friday, Aug. 27th, 2010.


We recently discovered the following in the California Food and Agriculture Code (# 32732), which reads in part: No prosecution which is based upon a sample of milk, cream, a product of milk or cream, or a product resembling milk products shall be had unless a duplicate of the smple is left with the accused.


We continue to solicit your prayers and support, and we thank all of you sincerely,


Joseph, Denise, Jedadiah, and the Morningland Dairy employees and families


Posted by morninglanddairy on August 30, 2010 at 9:48 PM Comments comments (50)

Dear Customers and Friends,



As of today, August 30th, 2010, we at Morningland Dairy are working with the Missouri State Milk Board and the FDA to clarify reports of contaminated cheese samples being discovered in California. At present, we have not received any official notice of the codes found on the samples so that we can identify the dates they were made.



We are also presently testing cheese samples through a St. Louis, MO laboratory to confirm the quality of our cheeses. According to the lab, we should have the test results by Monday, Sept. 6, 2010.



In our 30 years of production there have been no reports of illness connected with eating our cheeses, but we are being requested by the FDA to recall all of our cheese sold since January 1st, 2010. We are complying with that request. We ask that our customers return their cheese or refrain from consumption while we diligently investigate this matter.


We are concerned for you, our customers, and we apologize for the inconvenience and the concern you must be feeling. We ask for your prayers, your patience, and your continued support as we strive to continue to provide a healthy, high-quality, artisan raw milk cheese.





Joseph, Denise, Jedadiah and the Morningland Dairy employees and families

August 23rd, 2010

Posted by morninglanddairy on August 23, 2010 at 5:35 PM Comments comments (46)

I just found out I could ad pics to the blog!  Yes I know, I'm slow......So here goes.


Eight bred heifers are now running with the dairy herd as those who read this blog will know . They start calving at the beginning of September. They are learning the routine and learning to go through the dairy barn like civilized cows. Since they haven't had grain in about 9 months, they are also re-learning to eat a bit of grain preparatory to their calving. They aren't sure they like it yet.

For the first two weeks, they wouldn't come any nearer to the barn, than the bottom of the holding pen. Then we managed to shove a couple into the barn and they discovered that it didn't eat them. By the end of about four weeks, they were all walking through the barn at the end of milking. Now, they are all getting locked in for a few minutes at a time so that they get used to just standing in the barn. Most are very calm about it. A couple think that something fishy is going on.

#808 is our star. She loves the barn, loves the feed, and is now accustomed to getting sprayed with teat dip before leaving the barn. Because she is so calm, she gets to come in the front, a position most heifers do NOT like.

Most of these girls are springing, some are obviously due later.




Remember this girl?  She was the last calf born in late June. All other calves were at least two months older, so we decided to leave #009 with her mother, instead of bottling her. Here she is, barely 8 weeks old, and HUGE. No grain, just mamas milk and pasture. She thinks she is a big girl and should get to walk through the barn at the end of milking too. We train our girls young........LOL!!

Forgive the dirt. She lays in the holding pen and chews her cud while we milk.



Now that I know I can add can expect me to blog more often.  I am a picture fanatic!