Cazenovia The Cazenovia Beverage Trail has a new, although unofficial, location at which patrons can stop and get a homemade drink — but this drink is non-alcoholic.
It is, in fact, milk.
Fresh, raw milk is an up-and-coming commodity in terms of local production and local consumption in this age of “buy local,” and Ju-Vindale Holsteins, located at 2074 Ballina Road, recently became the second dairy in Cazenovia and one of the few in Madison County to become licensed by the state to sell directly to the public the fresh, raw milk its cows produce.
“I believe in offering the best quality product that we can produce,” said Vincent Wagner, who owns, along with his wife Juliet, the 270-acre farm in Cazenovia that three years ago was named a Dairy of Distinction by New York state. “Raw milk is not new at all … There are benefits to raw milk, but [many in] society think it’s wrong.”
Fresh, raw milk is milk that comes straight from the cows to the holding tanks to the bottles with no pasteurization, no homogenization and no chemicals added. It is, in fact, the way all Americans drank their milk until pasteurization — a process that heats milk to specific temperature for a specific period of time in order to kill microorganisms that could cause diseases such as typhoid fever, tuberculosis and diphtheria — was invented in the 1860s and became routine in the U.S. beginning in the 1920s.
The debate over the health benefits of raw milk today continues with proponents of non-pasteurized milk saying it is more beneficial to humans because the vitamins, minerals and beneficial bacteria and enzymes it contains get lost in the pasteurization process (some of which are then chemically added back in), while opponents such as the CDC and FDA say unpasteurized milk is too dangerous to drink because of the bacteria, parasites and viruses it contains if they are not eliminated by pasteurization.