Dairy groups push back against proposed school chocolate milk ban

Published: May. 24, 2023 at 2:10 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - The U.S. Department of Agriculture is considering a nationwide ban on chocolate milk from school cafeterias.

They cite concerns with added sugars and some say the sweet drink contributes to rising levels of childhood obesity.

New England Dairy says that there’s only a 26-calorie difference between non-flavored milk and chocolate milk that’s served in schools. They also say school chocolate milk is formulated to contain less sugar than the chocolate milk you might buy at the grocery store -- about 8 grams per serving. The nonprofit says there are concerns about what this could mean for local farmers who provide milk to schools as well as kids missing out from the essential nutrients they get from the drink.

“I do think, overall, in school milk consumption will go down if flavored milks are banned from being in schools,” said the group’s Michael DeAngelis.

In New England, about seven percent of all milk produced winds up in schools.