|Until the pasteurization process came into vogue in the early 20th century, all milk was raw milk. People have been consuming raw milk since cows were domesticated about 10,000 years ago.
In the 1800s as people moved into urban areas, many US dairies began commercially producing low quality raw milk in the inner cities of Boston and New York and others. These dairies would feed their cows poor quality "brewer's mash." The resulting milk was very weak and nearly blue from lack of protein, mineral, and fat content. During this same time period, the dairy industry did not use or have access to refrigeration, stainless steel, milking machines, rubber hoses, hot water, or chlorine as a sanitizer. TB and Brucellosis were rampant (not to mention horse manure on the streets, flies, and lack of public sanitation and sewage) and the cows were milked by hand without mechanical machines. The cows stood in manure and there was no access to pasture (sounds like some confinement dairy farms of 2010). The resulting unhealthy milk from these sources literally killed millions.
Why milk is pasteurized
The heating of milk to high temperatures reduced the horrible blight of dairy-related illness. However, during this same time period, milk from the countryside taken from pasture grazed healthy and clean cows was the best medicine of the day. In fact, the Mayo Clinic used this high quality country raw milk as a basis for many disease curing therapies. This was the untold story of raw milk. Because of pasteurization successes, commercial interests prevailed and all dairies (the good, bad, and the ugly) then began to pool their milk so that "nobody would die," even if milk quality was very poor. This was great news for milk mass marketing, and creameries created high profits. These pasteurization practices continue today with the chief benefit being extended shelf life.
The legacy of pasteurization
Pasteurized milk is a dead product, now causing allergies and lactose intolerance to huge sectors of the population. Natural organic raw milk has in it vitally important living things. These include the following: beneficial bacteria, enzymes (including lipase, protease, and others) lactase forming bacteria, and many enzyme based pathogen killing systems. The common practice of pasteurization inactivates or dramatically reduces the effects of these important active (living) elements. As a result, you may be lactose intolerant when drinking pasteurized milk, but not lactose intolerant when you drink raw milk. This is because lactase enzymes are being formed when you digest raw milk. That is why we say, "only living milk brings life."