Update on the benefits of flavored milk in school!


Adapted from: www.milkdelivers.org. You can click on the link to get more information. New Study Reveals Negative Nutritional Impact of Removing Chocolate Milk from Schools A study presented at the School Nutrition Association Annual National Conference reveals that eliminating chocolate and other flavored milks from school cafeteria menus resulted in a dramatic drop in milk consumption along with a substantial reduction in nutrients—which are not easy or affordable to replace. The study included nearly 700 measurement days over three months at 58 elementary and secondary schools across the country. When flavored milk was not available, many children chose not to drink milk and missed out on the essential nutrients that milk provides. On days when only white milk was offered in cafeterias, milk consumption dropped an average of 35 percent.

When flavored milk leaves the lunchroom, essential nutrients leave with it. The study results indicate to replace the nutrients lost from the decline in milk consumption: * Required three to four different food items to match milk's nutrient contribution. * Added back more calories and fat than were being reduced. * Added back roughly half the sugar, netting a savings of only 15-28 grams per week. * Cost an incremental $2,200 to $4,600 more annually per 100 students.

"When flavored milk was not an option, many children wouldn't take the white milk or if they did, they wouldn't drink it," said Linda Stoll, MPH, executive director of food services at Jeffco Public Schools in Jefferson County, Colo., who participated in study. "The white milk frequently got thrown away." Keep Flavored Milk from Dropping Out of School. Without Flavor, Consumption Drops!
All seven school districts experienced a consumption decline when flavors were not available. Overall, milk consumption dropped an average of 35 percent. Two districts found that milk consumption dropped by an average of 43 percent when only white milk was offered. In addition, five of the individual schools participating in the study saw consumption drop by more than 50 percent. The study also revealed that the drop in consumption did not recover over a year's time. Even the 40 schools that were in their second year of a limited-or no-flavors policy did not see students moving to white milk. On average, students at these schools drank 37 percent less milk compared to when they had flavored milk available every school day.

Nutrients Down the Drain "It's important for parents and school professionals to recognize the implications of removing chocolate milk from school meals," said Rachel K. Johnson, PhD, RD, a professor of nutrition at the University of Vermont who reviewed the study and provided consultation on the impact of the flavored milk changes on the children's nutrient intakes. "As the study demonstrated, there could be well-meaning but negative consequences of limiting the availability of flavored milks." "Milk ranks among the top sources of calcium, vitamin D, protein, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and vitamin A," Johnson said. "Schools would need to re-plan their menus to ensure they deliver the important nutrients that are lost due to reduced milk consumption."

More About the Study One of the largest studies of its kind, it is the first to measure the actual amount of milk discarded and estimate the amount of key nutrients lost. Conducted in seven school districts across the country to quantify the impact of curtailing the availability of flavored milk in schools on children's milk consumption and intakes of key shortfall nutrients. Analyzed milk consumption in a variety of elementary schools that either eliminated chocolate and other flavored milks, or limited the days they were offered. Measured both the amount of milk selected by students and "plate waste"—the amount discarded—to calculate the ounces of milk consumed or wasted. Conducted in 2009 by Prime Consulting Group and funded by the Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP).

Industry Innovations Recognizing that many schools want to reduce the sugar content in all their menu offerings, more than 90 industry-partner milk companies across the U.S. have proactively reformulated flavored milk to lower its added sugars, fat and total calories, while preserving its nutritional value. These new products aim for 150 calories and less than 25 grams of sugar per 8-ounce serving, while striving to provide a product with a taste students will accept so they will continue to choose and enjoy drinking this nutritious beverage.

Click on this link to read more about the benefits of keeping flavored milks in schools.
Click on this link to see why flavored milk needs to stay in schools.
Click on this video link to learn why flavored milk is an important element in your child's nutrition at school.