Free Milk Program For Children

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From Your Health Journal…..”What a nice story about some primary schools in New Zealand will be receiving free milk next year at school. Many children do not drink enough healthy liquids – filling up with empty calories from ‘liquid candy’ consumption. After age 2, it is important for children to consumer about 3 cups of non or low fat milk each day. Milk contains all of the macro-nutrients – carbohydrates, protein, and fat. It is important to supply children with vitamins A & D, riboflavin, phosphorus, calcium, and potassium. Dairy is rich in many vitamins and minerals, great for strengthening bones and muscles. A very heart warming article helping children lead healthier lifestyles.”

From the article…..

Otago primary school children can expect to receive a free daily serving of milk next year, as part of a national bid to become ”the dairy nutrition capital of the world”.

Fonterra’s ”Milk for Schools” programme will be rolled out in Southland primary schools first, at the start of term 1, January 28, and will then spread through the country during the year.

By the middle of term 2, all areas of the South Island are expected to be receiving school milk.

In launching Milk for Schools yesterday, Fonterra chief executive Theo Spierings said he hoped all New Zealand schools wishing to take part would be receiving the low-fat 180ml servings by the end of term 1, 2014.

Fonterra would also provide fridges to keep supplies cool.

A previous government-backed free school milk scheme in New Zealand was stopped in 1967.

Otago Primary Principals’ Association president and Bathgate School principal Whetu Cormick said Milk for Schools was a positive initiative for children across the country. Many lower-decile schools already had access to other health initiatives, such as Kick Start Breakfast and Fruit in Schools, and the milk scheme would provide some equity across all New Zealand schools, he said.

The programme was trialled in Northland this year, and University of Auckland research showed Northland children’s milk consumption at school and at home had increased significantly since the pilot began.

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