Vernon Hershberger's Food Rights Trial 2010-2013

September 2, 2022

Vernon Hershberger won his case against the State of Wisconsin and is free to operate his private food club. No current charges.

Amos Miller is currently on trial with federal regulators for shipping meat nationwide through his Amish-owned private food club.

Background

Vernon Hershberger of Wisconsin was ordered to stop providing raw milk to his private food club in June of 2010. At first it was a hold order, which he rejected, then criminal charges were brought against him. He saw victory in 2013.

Hershberger was represented by Glenn Reynolds and Elizabeth Rich from the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund.

June 7th, 2010: Wisconsin: DATCP Raids Hershberger Farm, article by Pete Kennedy, Esq.

August 28, 2012: FTCLDF to Represent Hershberger

May 25, 2013: Vernon Hershberger Trial Verdict: Acquitted on Three of Four Charges, article by Pete Kennedy, Esq.

Sauk County jury acquitted dairy farmer Vernon Hershberger on three of four criminal charges for violations of the Wisconsin food and dairy code after a contentious five-day trial.

Prosecution was carried out by the State of Wisconsin. This was not a federal case, Wisconsin state agents went after Mr. Hershberger.

He won through Jury Nullification.

Wisconsin has yet to succeed in passing pro- raw milk or pro- private food club/ herdshare legislation. Small localized herdshares exist, but on unsecured legal grounds.

Here’s a photo, video, and link dump from the times.

Photos

Vernon Hershberger continues to sell his dairy products, including unpasteurized milk, even though the state says he doesn’t have a license. Above, he works on a personal garden next to his home, which is near the shop he keeps and sells his dairy products. Ken Leiviska / Times-Press

State and local police serving a warrant on Hershberger’s farm.

Protests included fresh, unpasteurized, raw milk.

David Gumpert hilariously captioned this photo: Vernon Hershberger (right) and a supporter in Loganville, WI.

On the left is Michael Schmidt, notorious farmer in Canada where raw milk is banned nationwide. He is in and out of jail.

Videos

Vernon refuses a search warrant.

Video essay from Cop Block.

Derrick Horton posted hundreds of clips (many under 30 seconds) on YouTube covering his trip to attend a protest supporting Vernon Hershberger. Hundreds of tiny clips, I wish someone would make a chronological playlist or highlight reel.

Here’s a few videos from a speaking engagement in support of Vernon Hershberger.

Relaying from this article David Gumpert posted in 2016.

One of the things that strikes me now about the trailer is how long and arduous the legal journey was. Hershberger’s trial lasted only five days, but the inspections and demonstrations and legal hearings stretched over several years.

Vernon Hershberger won his case. The charges were dropped and he was able to continue serving raw milk to his community.

Credits

Re-Visiting Vernon Hershberger Food Rights Trial on Video, from David Gumpert

Life has been good for raw milk farmer since winning landmark case, from Madison.com

Hershberger still farming, from Wiscnews

The Inside Story of a “Juror Revolt” in Amish Raw Milk Trial, from Modern Farmer

4 Questions Raised by the Amish Raw Milk Trial, David Gumpert for Modern Farmer

Raw Deal, from Milwaukee Mag

Local chef stands up for raw milk with Food Freedom Fundraiser, from OnMilwaukee

Vernon Hershberger of Wisconsin, from FTCLDF

The Vernon Hershberger Trial Begins Today, from FTCLDF

Vernon Hershberger, Wisconsin, from the WAPF

Raw milk farmer Vernon Herschberger — the tragic reality of human kindness, from The Bovine

Wisconsin Farmer to Stand Trial for Selling Raw Milk, from The Daily Beast

ON TRIAL: Raw Milk Farmer Vernon Hershberger Faces 30 Months In Jail, from OffTheGridNews.com

VICTORY: Vernon Hershberger Acquitted Of Raw Milk Charges, from OffTheGridNews.com




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