Press Bulletin No. 35.
(BY A. W. BLAIR).
The laws enacted by Congress to regulate the butter in-
dustry of the United States, recognize four grades of but-
ter, as follows: Genuine dairy butter made from milk
or cream, or both; "process" or "renovated" butter;
"adulterated" butter and oleomargarine. There is no
Federal law governing the manufacture and sale of genu-
ine butter, but the production and sale of the other three
are regulated by laws enacted by Congress August, 1886,
and May, 1902.
"PROCESS" OR "RENOVATED" BUTTER.
"Process" or "renovated" butter is made.from the in-
ferior grades of butter collected by the peddler in sections
where there is little knowledge, skill or care in butter pro-
duction. This inferior product is melted, refined and
made to resemble genuine butter. The melted butter is
March Ist, 1903.
relined by skimming, settling, creating, washing and
other processes. But after being thus treated it becomes
an oil or fat almost free from taste or odor, and it must
therefore be treated in such a way that it will have re-
stored to it the butter characteristics. For this purpose
the processed butter is usually granulated by cooling and
churning or mixing with milk, cream or buttermilk, and
may or may not have salt and artificial coloring added.
Having passed through this treatment butter that was at
at one time rancid, sour, moldy or otherwise faulty and
unmerchantable, looks, smells and tastes like genuine
butter, and has become a marketable product. The law
above referred to, provides that every manufacturer of
renovated butter sliall.pay a special tax of $50 per year,
and also that he shall pay a tax of f' per pound on his
manufactured product. Anyone evading the special tax
becomes liable to a fine of not less than one thousand nor
more that five thousand dollars, in addition to the t;x.
If in "renovating" or "processing" butter, any acid,
alkali, chemical or other foreign substance (including
any fat or oil other than butter fat) is introduced into
the butter, or if itis made to hold abnormal quantities
of water, milk or cream, it is, in accordance with the act,
to be treated as "adulterated butter." Renovated butter
containing 16%, or over, of moisture is classed as "adul-
trated butter." Manufacturers of adulterated butter
must pay a special tax of $600 per year and must also pay
a tax of 10f per pound on their output. Wholesale deal-
ers in adulterated butter must pay a special tax
of $480 per annum and retail dealers $48 per annum.
Fines are provided for failure to pay these taxes.
All other "butter compounds" or "substitutes" which
are variously known under the names of oleomargarine,
oleo, butterine, lardine, etc., when made in imitation of
butter, are by act of Congress classified as "oleomargar-
ine." The method of manufacturing oleomargarine as
described by Mr. Armour, of the firm of Armour & Co.,
in one of the Senate documents of the 49th. Congress is as
-follows: "The fat is taken from the cattle in the pro-
cess of slaughtering, and after a thorough washing is
placed in a bath of clean, cold water, and surrounded
with ice where it is allowed to remain until all animal
heat has been removed. It is then cut into small pieces
by machinery and cooked at a temperature of about 150
degrees, until the fat, in liquid form, has separated from
the fibrine or tissue, then settled until it is perfectly
clear. Then it is drawn into graining vats and allowed
to stand a day, when it is ready for the presses. The
presses extract the stearine, leaving the remaining pro-
duct, which is commercially known as oleo oil, which,
when churned with cream or milk or both and with
usually a proportion of creamery butter the whole being
properly salted, gives the new food product, oleomargar-
ine." Butterine is made from selected leaf lard in a very
similar manner to oleomargarine.
Manufacturers of oleomargarine are required to pay
the same tax that is required of manufacturers of adul-
terated butter, that is, a special tax and a tax of iop on
the pound; excepting that when the oleomargarine is free
from artificial coloring matter intended to make it look
like genuine butter, the tax is if per pound.
Section 8, act of August 2, 1886, as amended by section
2, of the act of May 9, 1902, provides: "That any per-
son that sells, vends or furnishes oleomargarine for the
use and consumption of others, except to his own family
table without compensation, who shall add to or mix with
such oleomargarine any artificial coloration that causes
it to look like butter of any shade of yellow shall also be
held to be a manufacturer of oleomargarine within the
meaning of said act, and subject to the provisions
Fines are provided for failure to pay these taxes as in
the case of "process" or "adulterated" butter.
It is now conceded that there is nothing ,injurious
about oleomargarine when properly made, and some even
prefer it to butter, but the wrong comes in its being
placed upon the market as "dairy butter," "creamery
butter," etc., at the price of the best creamery butter.
The cost of manufacturing oleomargarine is much less
than the cost of producing good butter and for it to be
placed upon the market as butter, at the price of the best
butter, is manifestly an injustice to the dairymen to say the
least. If it is placed upon the market. under its right
name and on its merits, there can be no objection to it.
The great trouble in the past has been that the law has
THF FLORIDA MARKET.
-Renovated butter is certainly more objectionable than
oleomargarine, and should not be placed upon the market
except when properly labeled; while adulterated butter
if sold under its right name would have a very limited
sale and that at a low price. Borax and boric acid have
been, and are used to some extent, as a butter preserva-
tive, and while they may not always prove injurious, yet
it is only just and right that the purchaser should be in-
formed of their presence by a proper label.
Whether under the new Federal law there is much
oleomargarine, "renovated" and "adulterated" butter be-
ing shipped into Florida, I am unable to say, but certain it
is that material under the name of butter is being
shipped into the state from Western cities which are
the centers of the great packing house industries. If it
can be shown that these packing houses have gone into
the dairy business then perhaps we may feel assured that
we are getting creamery butter. That great quantities
of these materials have been consumed here in the past
there is no doubt.
I think we may hardly hope for any great reform in this
direction, until there is a state law, with provision for
its execution, to work in conjunction with the Federal
law. Florida, with her mild winters and many natural
advantages, offers excellent opportunities for dairying,
and were it more largely engaged in by the farmers of the
state, many thousands of dollars could be kept in cir-
culation at home, which now go to the North and West to
pay for a grade of butter inferior to that which may be
1i State papers please copy or notice.