Got Milk? Lawsuit Reaches End of the Road
Joseph and Brenda Cochran filed a lawsuit in 2003, saying that being compelled to contribute to the National Dairy Promotion Board which funds the got milk? campaign, violated their freedom of speech. The couple says they differentiate their own raw milk products by not using synthetic growth hormones, and therefore a generic marketing campaign has no benefit for them.
In April 2004, the Cochrans appeared to have a chance after the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia overturned a lower court, ruling that had gone against them. But USDA and seven dairy farmers who support the assessment appealed that decision to the U.S. Supreme Court. In February, citing a decision in a beef check-off case, the Supreme Court remanded the got milk? case to the 3rd Circuit, which last month reversed its 2004 ruling and affirmed the original opinion.