From The Cornucopia Institute's The Authentic Almond Project: "California-grown raw almonds are no longer raw, following enactment of a federal rule in September 2007. The USDA has mandated that raw almonds are to be sanitized using treatment processes that the industry generously describes as “pasteurization.”
The rule requires treatment of raw almonds with a toxic fumigant or high-temperature heat. The scheme has imposed significant financial burdens on small-scale and organic growers, lacks scientific justification, has damaged domestic almond markets, and does not address the unsustainable methods used on the industrial-scale almond orchards where the only two documented Salmonella outbreaks have occurred. And the treated almonds can still be deceptively labeled as “raw!”
There is a legal challenge to the raw almond treatment mandate. A lawsuit seeking to overturn the almond pasteurization rule was filed on Sept. 9, 2008 in the Washington, D.C. federal court. Fifteen almond farmers and handlers are plaintiffs in the complaint."
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