In an unnecessarily provocative announcement, the Food and Drug Administration declared their intention to crack down on almond milk and other non-dairy milk products. Their contention? These sources of milk are actually not milk, according to a new set of guidelines that the FDA will later publish.

The agency’s commissioner Scott Gottlieb referenced milk’s current definition, stating: “Milk is the lacteal secretion, practically free from colostrum, obtained by the complete milking of one or more healthy cows.” Essentially, the government wants to impose a strict, “by the letter of the law” interpretation, allowing for zero leeway to facilitate alternative products like almond milk.

Technically, it’s not a complete FDA crackdown. According to Newsweek, the agency “will soon begin gathering public comment on the issue, before acting to redefine milk products.”

If this is a genuine open forum, consumers should blast the FDA for interference against the free market.

Make no mistake about it: the FDA seeks to protect the dairy industry, which has suffered in recent years as consumers shift towards almond milk and non-dairy milk alternatives. While every government wants to protect their native industries, what the agency is doing is similar to an international tariff.

As the thorny issue of Brexit demonstrated, there’s no real evidence that protectionist policies improve the target industry, or the broader economy. Moreover, at the heart of capitalism is consumer choice. Without this critical freedom, capitalism cannot exist.

If someone wants to enjoy almond milk, and is willing to pay for it, that’s their prerogative – the FDA nor the dairy industry should not be allowed to manipulate the consumer market.

The other overlooked component in these FDA crackdowns – this isn’t the agency’s first rodeo against non-dairy products – is that food and beverage products from the dairy industry aren’t healthy. No other species on this planet drinks milk outside of their weening years. Certainly, no species besides humans drink another species milk.

Plus, animal-based proteins almost always produce an acidic response in the human body. One of the few exceptions is goat cheese (and that might have to be re-termed since it’s not related to bovine excretions). But in almost all other cases, animal-based proteins catalyze an acidic balance, which eventually sparks calcium production from our bones to return our bodies to an alkaline state.

Put another way, drinking milk doesn’t promote bone strength; instead, it robs our bones of calcium! Multiple medical studies prove that dairy-milk consumption makes our bones brittle in later life. By ingesting this foreign substance, we are destroying our lives, not improving it.

Of course, promoting alternatives like almond milk would make us less dependent on the healthcare industry, which doesn’t fit the broader agenda.