White Lies? Milk Label Accuracy in Question

US - Got hormones? Don't expect to find the artificial kind in the milk manufactured by at least three New Jersey dairy companies, which has labels on their packaging claiming to contain "no artificial growth hormones."
calendar icon 12 November 2007
clock icon 1 minute read

The statement may appeal to consumers, but the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture wants the labels scrubbed.

The three New Jersey companies, which include Cumberland Dairy in Deerfield Township, Cumberland County, along with 13 others from Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut and Massachusetts, were identified by the agriculture department last month and asked to change their "inaccurate or misleading" labels by Jan. 1.

Later this month, the labeling of milk products will be discussed during hearings by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture that could lead to similar action here as in Pennsylvania.

"We want to establish clarity," said Dan Wunderlich, the New Jersey Department of Agriculture's coordinator of dairy and enforcement programs.

Investigations of milk and dairy-product labeling in New Jersey have been going on since last year. Wunderlich declined to name which companies are under investigation.

"We've looked at anything that can be construed as misleading to the consumer," Wunderlich said.

So what makes a label misleading?

While a company can claim that it uses no synthetic hormones in the production of its milk, there are no scientific tests that can prove that, Wunderlich said.

Source: The Press of Atlantic City

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