Dear Editor: In the United States, between 1998 and 2008, 187 hospitalizations and two deaths were reportedly related to raw milk.

Compare these numbers to those related to community-acquired methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), which kills nearly 20,000 Americans yearly.

One study in Iowa at a large swine farm found that 49 percent of animals and 45 percent of workers tested positive for MRSA.

Factory farms breed deadly organisms such as MRSA and E. coli and have a negative impact on public health. Small farmers selling small amounts of whole raw food directly to consumers will never create the health risk that factory farms pose.

When are the organizations designed to protect the health of Americans going to address our real food safety issues?

- Lori Seaborne, physician assistant, Madison


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