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TO REGULATE THE IMPORTATION OF MILK AND CREAM
TUESDAY, MAY 11, 1926
UNITED STATES SENATE,
Washington, D.C. The committee met, pursuant to call, at 10.30 o'clock a. m., in room 326, Senate Office Building, Senator George W. Norris presiding.
Present: Senators Norris (chairman), Gooding, Norbeck, Deneen, Sackett, Ransdell, Caraway, Ferris, and Mayfield.
Present also: Senator Lenroot, of Wisconsin, and Senator Copeland, of New York; also Representative Taber, of New York.
The CHAIRMAN. The committee will be in order. The committee was called together this morning for hearings on Senate bill 4126 to regulate the importation of milk and cream in the United States, for the purpose of promoting the dairy industry of the United States, and protecting the public health.
I will ask to have the bill put in the record at this point. (The bill referred to is here printed in full, as follows:)
[S. 4126, Sixty-ninth Congress, first session]
A BILL To regulate the importation of milk and cream into the United States for the
purpose of promoting the dairy industry of the United States and protecting the public health
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That on and after the date on which this Act takes effect the importation into the United States of milk and cream is prohibited unless the person by whom such milk or cream is shipped holds a valid permit from the Secretary of Agriculture.
SEC. 2. Milk or cream shall be considered unfit for importation (1) when all cows producing such milk or cream are not healthy and a physical examination of all such cows has not been made within one year previous to such milk being offered for importation; (2) when such milk or cream, if raw, is not produced from cows which have passed a tuberculin test applied by a duly authorized official veterinarian of the United States, or of the country in which such milk or cream is produced, within one year previous to the time of the importation, showing that such cows are free from tuberculosis; (3) when the sanitary conditions of the dairy farm or plant in which such milk or cream is produced or handled do not score at least seventy points out of one hundred points according to the methods for scoring as provided by the score cards used by the Bureau of Dairy Industry of the United States Department of Agriculture at the time such dairy farms or plants are scored; (4) in the case of raw milk if the number of bacteria per cubic centimeter exceed two hundred thousand and in the case of raw cream seven hundred and fifty thousand, in the case of pasteurized milk if the number of bacteria per cubic centimer exceed one hundred thousand, and in the case of pasteurized cream five hundred thousand; (5) when the temperature of milk or cream at the time of importation exceeds fifty degrees Fahrenheit.
SEC. 3. The Secretary of Agriculture shall cause such inspections to be made as are necessary to insure that milk and cream are so produced and handled as to comply with the provisions of section 2 of this Act, and in all cases when he finds that such milk and/or cream is produced and handled so as not to be
unfit for importation under clauses 1, 2, and 3 of section 2 of this Act, he shall issue to persons making application therefor permits to ship milk and/or cream into the United States, provided that in lieu of the inspections to be made by or under the direction of the Secretary of Agriculture he may, in his discretion, accept a duly certified statement signed by a duly accredited official of an authorized department of any foreign government that the provisions in clauses 1, 2, and 3 of section 2 of this Act have been complied with. Such certificate of the accredited official of an authorized department of any foreign govern. ment shall be in the form prescribed by the Secretary of Agriculture, who is hereby authorized and directed to prescribe such form, as well as rules and regulations regulating the issuance of permits to import milk or cream into the • United States.
The Secretary of Agriculture is authorized to suspend or revoke any permit for the shipment of milk or cream into the United States when he shall find that the holder thereof has violated this Act or any of the regulations made hereunder, or that the milk and/or cream brought by the holder of such permit into the United States is not produced and handled in conformity with or that the quality thereof does not conform to all of the provisions of section 2 of this Act.
SEC. 4. It shall be unlawful for any person in the United States to receive milk or cream imported into the United States from the importer thereof unless the person by whom such milk or cream was imported holds a valid permit from the Secretary of Agriculture.
SEC. 5. Any person who knowingly violates any provision of this Act shall, in addition to all other penalties prescribed by law, be punished by a fine of not less than $100 nor more than $1,000, or by imprisonment for not more than one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
SEC. 6. There is hereby authorized to be appropriated, out of any moneys in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, the sum of $50,000 per annum, to enable the Secretary of Agriculture to carry out the provisions of this Act.
SEC. 7. Any laws or parts of laws inconsistent herewith are hereby repealed.
SEC. 8. Nothing in this Act is intended nor shall be construed to affect the powers of any State, or any political subdivision thereof, to regulate the shipment of milk or cream into, or the handling, sale, or other disposition of milk or cream in, such State or political subdivision.
SEC. 9. When used in this Act
(a) The term “ person means an individual, partnership, association, or corporation.
(b) The term “ United States means continental United States.
SEC. 10. This act shall take effect upon the expiration of ninety days from the date of its enactment.
The CHAIRMAN. Gentlemen, I thought we would be able to con clude the hearings on this bill to-day, and it would not take very long, but the department wants to be heard, and they are not ready now. We will go on and hear everybody we can to-day, who is here. I understand there are some gentlemen from Canada who wanted to be heard.
Mr. SCOTT. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. I did not know until just now that you were here. What is your name?
Mr. SCOTT. Scott is my name. I am general counsel for the National Dairy Council of Canada.
The CHAIRMAN. Is there anyone else with you? Mr. Scott. Mr. Stephan, the vice president of the Dairy Council of Canada.
The CHAIRMAN. Suppose we go ahead, Senator Lenroot, and youcan call such witnesses as you want to who are here to-day, then we will hear Mr. Scott and Mr. Stephan after you have concluded, and then we will adjourn the hearing subject to call, with the idea of letting the department be heard. I do not know yet what their attitude is going to be on the bill.
STATEMENT OF HON. IRVINE L. LENROOT, UNITED STATES
SENATOR FROM WISCONSIN
Senator LEN ROOT. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee, right on that subject, this bill has been prepared in cooperation of the National Cooperative Milk Producers Association, the Department of Agriculture, and the other dairy interests of the country. The bill has been partially framed in the department.
The purpose of this bill is to provide an inspection law for the importation of milk and cream into the United States from foreign countries. Its purpose is two-fold: one with relation to the public health and one to require the same standard with regard to the production and distribution of milk and cream that is required of dairy farmers in the United States. They are to-day under a very great handicap because, as the committee knows, the standards required in the United States are very stringent, and in many of our larger cities, for instance, they prohibit the sale of any raw milk within the city that is not certified to have been produced from tuberculin-tested herds.
I want to say in the beginning that the bill is not introduced with any spirit of hostility to any other country, but because it seems very unfair to allow competition from other countries of milk. that is produced under insanitary conditions, that is not subject to the same test that is required for milk produced in the United States.
With reference to the bill itself, in its major features, I think all except one are taken from the standards required by the Board of Health of the State of New York, and I would like at the very outset to place in the record excerpts from the sanitary code published by the Public Health Council of the State of New York.
I would like also to place in the record excerpts from the sanitary code, department of health, of New York City.
Next, I would like to submit a memorandum showing the importations of milk and cream in this country during the years 1922, 1923, 1924, and 1925, and at this point I would like to say that England is now proposing almost identically the same kind of an inspection law that this bill provides, and I would like to put into the record an article from The Milk Industry, volume 6, No. 10, 1926, page 83, head office, Temple Avenue, London, which shows what England is proposing to do in this same matter.
Dr. Harvey Wiley, who is very well-know to every member of the committee, the other day wrote me and asked for a copy of the bill, and I yesterday received a reply which I would like to put in the record at this point, which reads as follows:
I thank you very cordially for sending me a copy of S. 4126. I have looked over it with some care, and I think upon the whole it is an excellent measure.
I should like to call your attention, however, to one word in line 6, page 4, which reads:
"Any person who knowingly violates," etc.
The word “knowingly ” has wrecked many food laws in which it has been found. An earnest effort was made by the adulterators to have the word 'knowingly" in our food and drugs act, but they never succeeded in getting it in. It is almost impossible to prove knowledge, that is, guilty knowledge. Your bill will be immensely improved if you will have the word “knowingly eliminated. I did not happen to see it if it be present in any part of the bill