Missouri is considering the legalization of retail raw milk and cream sales. No floor votes at the Missouri General Assembly have been scheduled, but two House committees are supporting House Bill 1977.
If the bill is passed, Missouri would be the third state to legalize the sale of raw milk, in addition to Alaska and Georgia. Alaska used rulemaking for its efforts, while Georgia used legislation.
Georgia's HB1175 bill, which would authorize and regulate the handling, production, transporting, and sale of raw milk and raw milk products for human consumption, was passed on March 3, 2022 in the House and has since moved to the Senate.
In Missouri, HB1977 was referred to as the "Downsizing State Government Committee" when it first received a hearing, and on January 20, 2022, it received a "do pass" recommendation. On March 2, 2022, it went to the House Committee on Rules and Administrative Oversight, which also gave it a "do pass" recommendation.
The bill's sponsor is Representative Ann Kelly (R), and the bill would legalize selling "Grade A" retail raw milk and cream produced in Missouri. Sales would be allowed at grocery stores, restaurants, soda fountains, or similar businesses, as long as the milk carries a warning label indicating that the milk is not pasteurized.
Missouri's current law allows farm-to-consumer sales and delivery of raw milk products, but does not allow the type of retail sales that HB1977 would allow. "Grade A" retail raw milk and raw cream would encompass products from farms that adhere to sanitation and bacterial standards that aim to meet or exceed those of "Grade A" pasteurized milk.