Doug Powell, the former Kansas State University professor who reports from Down Under on his popular Barfblog, says that while raw milk is legally sold in Australia as “bath milk” in stores alongside pasteurized milk, those days may be drawing to an end. Michael Baird, premier of New South Wales and leader of the New South Wales Liberal Party, responded to the December death of a child in Victoria and the hospitalization of four others linked to raw milk by pledging to work with other state and territory leaders to stop the sale of unpasteurized milk. And, after the Australia and New Zealand Ministerial Forum on Food Regulation this past week, ministers responsible for food safety expressed “extreme concern” about raw milk sold as “bath milk” with a disclaimer that is is “not for human consumption.” They called for a consistent approach across all Australian jurisdictions with action at the national level that would provide “a joint public health, food safety and consumer law solution.” After the outbreak in December, Victoria Consumer Affairs Minister Jane Garrett ordered a gag-inducing substance poured into raw milk being sold in stores with “bath” labels, a move that Powell says has “infuriated food activists” and sparked some weekend protests outside government offices. Dr. Rosemary Lester, Victoria’s chief health officer, defended the decision to put the bittering agent into the “bath milk.” She said the action was taken “to stop people from putting themselves and their children at risk.” However, Garrett’s action was called “knee jerk” by organic food store owner Rebecca Freer, who denies raw milk had a role either in the child’s death nor in the hospitalizations of the four others. Freer promised “violent resistance” to any government ban on raw milk. Only pasteurized milk may be sold for human consumption under the Australian New Zealand Food Standards Code. Any dairy farmer who sells raw milk for human consumption may be fined up to $60,000 and have all licenses suspended. The threat of fines and suspension, however, do not prevent an underground or black market system from doing business, a fact acknowledged by Garrett, the consumer affairs minister who has been the target of the protests. By spiking raw milk sold for bath and cosmetic purposes to make it less likely to be drank, she said the province will be protecting the elderly, children, and pregnant women who are most at risk from the dangers of raw milk. Activists want the government to look at other options, such as New Zealand’s recent decision to allow raw milk purchases at the farm gate, and the United Kingdom’s adoption of a “green cap” system for identifying raw milk. Meanwhile, the South Dakota State Senate has approved Senate Bill 45 to treat raw milk for human consumption as its own dairy category. SB 45 is the product of a working group put together by South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture Lucas Lentsch. South Dakota permits raw milk sales, but it currently treats raw milk as an exemption in dairy laws.