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L.A. would be biggest city to ban flavored milk in schools

June 5, 2011 |  1:44 pm

Jaila Brooks drinks chocolate milk during lunch at Marina del Rey Middle School.

Los Angeles Unified would be the largest U.S. school district by far to eliminate flavored milk from its campuses. Schools in Berkeley, Compton and San Diego, as well as those in Boulder, Colo., Minneapolis and Washington, D.C., have decided to drop flavored milk in at least some meals.

New York City schools still serve chocolate milk.

A cup of the fat-free chocolate milk served in L.A. schools has 120 calories, with 20 grams of sugar. Strawberry-flavored fat-free milk has 130 calories, with 26 grams of sugar, the same as a cup of Coke. Unflavored 1% milk has 120 calories, with 14 grams of sugar. (Milk contains some natural sugar.)

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is considering new rules for school meals, following recommendations from the nonprofit Institute of Medicine for more fruits and vegetables and calorie limits.

The institute did not recommend a ban on flavored milk, and there are no federal standards for sugar consumption. L.A. Unified limits sugar for individual items but not for the meal.

Read the full story: L.A. schools consider dumping chocolate milk


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-- Mary MacVean

Photo: Jaila Brooks drinks chocolate milk during lunch at Marina del Rey Middle School. Flavored milk accounts for about 60% of the milk students take for their meals in L.A. Unified. Credit: Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times