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Microbes and Microbiota: Benefits and Risks

Awesome to Serve on RAWMI Board and SRA Dose-Response Specialty Group

Wondering what was up that I had not posted a single blog last month? Good news about stimulating work and pro-bono service!

I hit the ground running in 2019, with new opportunities to provide professional service for two related non-profit organizations:

  • Raw Milk Institute (RAWMI) Board of Directors Officer

  • Society for Risk Analysis (SRA) Dose-Response Specialty Group (DRSG) Officer

RAWMI

is is a non-profit international organization dedicated to promoting and supporting the safe and hygienic production of raw milk and raw milk products for direct human consumption. RAWMI teaches well-established scientific principles and good manufacturing methods to assist farmers to produce hygienic safe raw milk. RAWMI assists farmers in developing and writing up risk assessment and management plans (RAMP) covering their whole farms.

I am honored to start my second month of service on the RAWMI Board with four other dedicated professionals.

  • Mark McAfee, Chairman, Founder of McAfee Farms and Organic Pastures Dairy Co., LLC

  • Dr. Joseph Heckman, Professor of Soil Science at Rutgers University

  • Dr. Sylvia Onusic, Nutrition Specialist and Licensed Dietitian-Nutritionist

  • Sarah Smith, Engineer, Homeopath, Homesteader, RAWMI Secretary

Mark McAfee

Mark McAfee

Joe Heckman

Joe Heckman

Sylvia Onusic

Sylvia Onusic

Sarah Smith

Sarah Smith

SRA DRSG

is a subsection of SRA that focuses on the relationships between underlying causal mechanisms for toxic effects, population dose-response relationships (including inter-individual variability), and implications for regulatory choices. We are interested in probabilistic methods for projecting responses to assist in analyzing the benefits of measures that are expected to alter population exposures to chemical, physical, and microbial hazards.

In 2019, interest is expanding not just in modeling likelihood and severity of illness from doses of chemical toxins and drugs, but also in microbial pathogens and how the gut and food microbiota influence health and disease.

DRSGlogo_0.jpg

Intersections

A fascinating topic at the intersection of RAWMI and SRA DRSG is the assumption that the presence of a potential pathogen in foods is predictive of risk. Risk practitioners understand that both the presence and level of toxicants and pathogens is needed to model likelihood and severity of the risk of illness.

I will return to this topic with some real world examples in the near future.

Also, the SRA Whole Truth, Whole Milk Campaign is winding down this month. I am honored to be partnering in this work with Cornell Professor Emeritus Rodney Dietert and SRA Past President Warner North to document evidence for benefits and risks of raw milks with dense, diverse microbiota intact. To date, we have raised $15,738, and more than 520 people viewed the campaign, more than 50 backed it, and 11 are following the campaign.

Prof Emeritus Rod Dietert

Prof Emeritus Rod Dietert

Dr. Warner North

Dr. Warner North

You can still donate at any level. Thank you in advance for your generous support.

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