Missouri's Attorney General has filed a lawsuit seeking preliminary and permanent injunctions as well as civil penalties against a Kiefer dairy equipment business and its owner.
In a news release from Chris Koster's office, he alleges Gary Allen Schier, who owns Schier Company of Kiefer, which buys and sells new and used dairy processing equipment, violated the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act.
Koster says Schier misrepresented to Missouri consumers that dairy-processing equipment sold by his company is long-lasting, reliable, and compliant with federal and state pasteurization standards.
In the release, Koster goes on to say the FDA sets national standards for dairy sanitary processing regulations, which are adopted and enforced by the states. Missouri dairy farms and creameries cannot operate unless their processing equipment passes inspection by the Missouri State Milk Board to ensure compliance with these pasteurization standards.
At least two Missouri dairy creameries purchased equipment from Schier. The first, Dairymen’s Best Creamery, LLC, located in Houston, Missouri, was in the process of building a dairy manufacturing facility to provide locally sourced milk products to schools. The second, Ozark Mountain Creamery, is a family owned and operated dairy farm and creamery located in Mountain Grove, Missouri.
After delivery, the equipment ordered from Schier was found to be inoperable or non-compliant with pasteurization standards.
Without operable and compliant machinery, Koster says Dairymen’s Best Creamery, was forced to close its doors.
“Missouri farmers need quality equipment to continue to produce their top-quality products,” Koster said. “This company cheated our farmers and we intend to hold them accountable.”