Pennsylvania will allow hormone labels on dairy products
A decision by Pennsylvania agriculture officials that dairy products sold in the state could not be labeled as synthetic-hormone-free sparked a consumer outcry and a review by Governor Ed Rendell. Yesterday, officials more or less reversed that ban: dairies will be allowed to advertise that their cows aren’t shot up with synthetic hormones, which increase milk production. However, dairies touting the non-injection of their bovines will not be allowed to use the language “hormone-free,” as some hormones occur naturally in cows, and must also include a disclaimer that no significant difference has been shown between milk from injected and non-injected cows. Concerns about the hormones’ effect on humans have been so far unsubstantiated, though the effects on the cows — such as increased risk of udder infection and reduced number of pregnancies — are better documented.