Holy cow — students are not going to like this idea.
The New York City Department of Education has proposed eliminating chocolate milk from school menus. The department wants to replace the sweet drink with options that contain less sugar.
While the idea may be well-intentioned, both parents and experts say that it is not a necessary change. Norma Reid-Archibald, a dietician and nutritionist with NYU Langone Hospital Brooklyn, says that the ban is a bad idea because students need the calcium.
“I need them to have another option — there’s calcium, vitamin, potassium. All important,” Reid-Archibald said.
The dietician and nutritionist says school kids are currently served skim milk, with 90 calories. The chocolate milk served has 120 calories and only eight additional grams of sugar.
“Don’t worry about the sugar for this particular meal … because it’s a minimum part of their overall daily intake that these students are consuming.”
Still, while the idea has only been floated recently and no one has come out with vocal support, it hasn’t been utterly rejected either.
“Our priority is the health and well-being of our students, and every day, we offer a variety of healthy, delicious, and free meal options that exceed USDA standards,” the department said in a statement. “No decision has been made about chocolate milk."
The president of the New York Farm Bureau sent a letter to schools Chancellor Richard Carranza, asking on behalf of the state’s more than 4,000 dairy farms to drop the proposed ban.
Other cities where schools have banned chocolate milk include Washington, D.C., Rochester, Minnesota, and San Francisco, National Dairy Council spokesperson Lisa McComb said.
At least two cities, Los Angeles and Detroit, reversed their bans on flavored milk.
"LA was because of the cost of dealing with the waste which was reduced once chocolate milk was reinstated and Detroit when a new school nutrition director was hired and saw benefits from the nutrition of milk," McComb said.