Tague Calls on Public to Lobby for Whole Milk in Schools

Assemblyman Chris Tague (R,C-Schoharie) is asking the public to show their support for his legislation to bring back whole milk in schools (A.2321) after the downstate-driven majority in the Assembly blocked the bill from coming out of committee to the full house up for a vote. Tague has launched a petition on his Assembly website so the public can show its support for the popular measure and motivate lawmakers in Albany to reinstate whole milk in schools – a product that was needlessly banned, to many parents’ surprise, during the Obama Administration.

“So many people are surprised to learn that whole milk is not an option for their kids at school,” said Tague. “As parents learn this, they want to give their kids that option back because not only is it considered the healthiest option by many doctors, nutritionists and parents but it’s also good for our farms and our economy. Everyone wins, and I feel that families should at least have the choice.”

Since first introducing the bill in 2022, Tague said he has received overwhelming support from parents, educators, nutritionists, farmers and more. Specifically, his legislation would allow schools to purchase whole and 2% milk produced in New York state. A similar program is already in place in Pennsylvania and is very successful.

During President Obama’s administration, as part of his efforts to curb childhood obesity, the federal government prohibited whole and 2% milk from being served in schools. However, this had no impact on childhood obesity. Childhood obesity has actually continued to rise in the last decade. New research has now shown “low fat” products can contribute to obesity, and many experts now believe restrictions like these may even further exacerbate America’s obesity epidemic.

Additionally, this federal restriction led to a decrease in milk consumption among children and a rise in milk dumping in upstate dairy farms, many of which have been struggling financially or have closed in recent years. Tague’s legislation would address all of these concerns by allowing school children to get the same nutritious milk products that they are accustomed to at home at school, and help stabilize the dairy industry across our state.