About Our Globally Recognized Raw Milk Testing Program
As a world-leading innovator and pioneer in raw milk production food safety systems, we are deeply committed to the safe production of high-quality raw milk. Our company was the first to develop and implement a comprehensive Risk Analysis Management Program (RAMP) ten years ago and we continue to improve our food safety program as better technology becomes available.
Our company utilizes industry standard testing-technologies to provide extremely low risk, safe, and healthy raw milk. We achieve our high standards using a team approach, ensuring all risk elements are addressed from our grass to your glass. Every batch of milk is Triple-Tested by three different entities: the Fresno County Health Department, California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), as well as a third party laboratory.
As part of our food safety plan, all milking from one day is tracked by a unique “lot ID.” This allows us to efficiently connect our milk batches to all test results.
Our one-of-a-kind Test and Hold Policy:
In consulting with industry lab specialists, we have identified an efficient and effective sample collecting method that allows accurate representative testing for each batch of milk. We collect 20 unique and individual samples from each lot ID and then combine the separate samples into one composite to be sent to all three testing labs. Each lot ID must be cleared of E.Coli O157: H7 and other bad bacteria by all three labs prior to product distribution.
The History of the OP Food Safety Program:
Organic Pastures remains an international pioneer and has been recognized for significant improvements to raw milk food safety. The beginnings of the Organic Pastures raw milk food safety awareness began in 1997, long before Organic Pastures was founded, when Mark McAfee attended Chapman University and become certified in HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points). Originally an apple grower, Mark was soon recognized as Best of the West Fruit Grower for his advances in field food safety hazard reduction.
In 2000, Organic Pastures published the first production standards for raw milk. In 2007, Organic Pastures collaborated with top researchers worldwide, including Dr. Ron Hull Ph.D. of Australia, Dr. Caterina Berge of UC Davis, and Dr. Ted Beals M.D. of Michigan to develop the beginnings of our current Food Safety Program: RAMP (Risk Analysis and Management Plan). Organic Pastures’ RAMP plan contains a comprehensive set of conditions that ensures consistent, safe, and healthy milk. Daily checklists verify standards for all non-critical, GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices), SSOP (Sanitation Standard Operation Procedures), and CCP (Critical Control Point) raw milk safety elements have been met. To verify the effectiveness our food safety program, our RAMP team utilizes the Mpengo DQI 45 application to rapidly test for SCC and mastitis pathogens. We proudly publish our RAMP Food Safety Plan and lab results.
Organic Pastures is honored to be an example for the Raw Milk Institute as a dairy that meets the highest national and international raw milk safety standards.