A recently introduced bill that would allow schools to give students more milk choices will enhance the efforts of school nutrition programs to provide nutritious meals and teach healthy eating behaviors, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation.
The National School Lunch Program, designed to provide wholesome, nutritious meals for children, must follow the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which recommends three dairy servings each day. While low-fat and fat-free white or flavored milk meets DGA standards, the NSLP excludes low-fat flavored milk. The School Milk Nutrition Act of 2017 (H.R. 4101) gives schools the flexibility to offer-low fat (1%) flavored milk.
“We welcome the proposed pilot program to increase milk consumption through school venues such as classroom breakfast programs, athletic facilities, a la carte sales, vending, etc. Grants offered through this pilot program will help school nutrition officials find new and creative ways to provide children with nutritious, wholesome meal and snack choices,” AFBF President Zippy Duvall said in a letter to the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Glenn Thompson (R-Pa.).
Duvall also noted the organization’s support for the expansion of fluid milk choices for participants in the Women, Infants, and Children supplemental nutrition program.
“An allowance for reduced-fat (2%) milk for families in the WIC program will enhance dairy product options,” he wrote.