Oh, say it isn’t so!
Why? Cabot, owned by Agrimark, accepts milk from several surrounding states. Many of these farms have not committed to removing rBGH from their farms. Vermont farmers have made the rBGH free commitment– if only all the milk was sourced here!
So the state fined Agrimark for essentially false advertising. They had to pay a fine and donate lots of cheese to the Vermont Foodbank. According to VT Digger:
“The settlement requires Agri-Mark to pay $65,000 to the State of Vermont, to donate $75,000 worth of dairy products to local food banks, and to take steps to prevent misrepresentations in the future and accurately inform the public as to the rBST status of its products.”
As a result Cabot is required to list on their website which cheeses are guaranteed rBGH free, and which aren’t. The chart itself is useless, because it says that any of it’s cheese could contain growth hormones. You have to look at individual packages to find out.
Look on the package, to see if it says, “growth hormone free”. It is doesn’t say that in the little green box, there is no way to know if the cheese contains it.
|Notice the label of “No Artificial Growth Hormone”|
|The Pepper Jack cheese has no label of “No Artificial Growth Hormone” and therefore could contain it.|
I really just want to be able to trust Vermont based Cabot on this one, without having to look each time. I guess that is too much to ask. Soon, I’ll need my laptop and several hours to go grocery shopping. I’m thinking of converting to only locally made, organic cheeses for my family, and I am hoping to eat and cook with less of it.
I am disturbed by Cabot’s misleading consumers of because here on Non-Toxic Kids, I encouraged readers to buy Cabot cheeses after they proclaimed in 2009 they would no longer use rBGH. I also have fed these cheeses to my children for years, and am concerned about the effects of these hormones on their little growing bodies. Why worry? rBGH has been linked to increased rates of breast cancer and prostate cancer in this study published in the Lancet.
Cabot, how about taking a leadership role on this issue: refuse to accept milk from farms that continue to use growth hormones. We all learn from our mistakes– and this would show consumers you take their wishes and safety seriously, so we don’t have to worry which bar of cheese we pick up, as long as it’s Cabot.