“Hormone-free milk”? Not in Pennsylvania (or anywhere else)

Okay, here’s a government action I can agree with: Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture Dennis Wolff ordered 16 dairies in Pennsylvania to correct their milk labels because they gave false or misleading information to consumers.

Wolff said in a news release that 16 of the 140 dairy companies the department has reviewed use inaccurate or misleading labels because they contain claims that cannot be verified, or they imply their product is safer than others by telling consumers what’s not in the milk.

Wolff said claims such as “antibiotic-free” and “pesticide-free” are misleading because all processed milk sold in Pennsylvania is tested at least 10 times to guarantee that it is free of such substances. They are illegal in milk.

Some milk labels say “hormone-free,” but all milk contains hormones. Some labels claim the absence of synthetic hormones, but no scientific test can determine the truth of this claim.

The Ag Department said that such false claims may cause some consumers to become afraid of drinking milk and may substitute other less-healthy drinks.