Assemblyman Robert Smullen (R,C,I,SAM – Meco) joined a group of state lawmakers, including Congresswoman Elise Stefanik, farmers, and supporters in Albany for a press conference held by Assemblyman Chris Tague (R,C,I – Schoharie) to call for the reintroduction of whole and 2% milk options in New York’s school cafeterias before the conclusion of legislative session this week. The legislation (A.9990) is sponsored by both Minority and Majority and would allow schools to once again purchase these milk options, as opposed to just skim milk.
“While the federal prohibition on these milk options may have been well-intentioned at the time, new science shows that whole and 2% milk has myriad health benefits and children and parents should have the option to make their own dietary choices,” Smullen said. “Giving our schools this option back is a win-win-win for students, teachers, and especially our farmers who rely on the sale of whole milk to schools to remain viable. Well-nourished students make healthier and better performing students, and I am calling on Majority lawmakers in the Legislature to join us and pass this legislation before session adjourns for the summer this week.”
The federal government prohibited the sale of whole and 2% milk in public schools 10 years ago in an attempt to combat childhood obesity. Since the restriction took place, childhood obesity rates have continued to rise and new studies show that children who consume whole and 2% milk are at lower risk for high blood pressure, type-two diabetes, heart disease, and have increased satiety without weight gain.