American School Milk Battle Won by Jamie Oliver
Author: Jamie Oliver Foundation
Synopsis and Key Points:
Jamie Olivers Food Revolution celebrating victory in its on-going campaign to get children fed properly at American schools.
Main DigestLAUSD Due to Announce Removal of Flavored Milk - Food Revolution "Milk Day of Action" Showed Parents Across the U.S. Want Plain Milk For Their Kids.
Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution (www.jamiesfoodrevolution.com) is celebrating victory today in its on-going campaign to get children fed properly at school.
Known most recently for his battle with the Los Angeles Unified School District in his primetime ABC television series, Jamie Oliver and his Food Revolution have also been working behind-the-scenes, helping parents in Los Angeles and across the country get flavored milk removed from schools. Today the LAUSD Board votes to approve a new milk contract, paving the way for no flavored milk next fall.
"I couldn't be happier that new LAUSD Superintendent John Deasy is honoring the commitment he made to me on the Jimmy Kimmel Show. This is a giant step forward for the health and future of 680,000 kids in Los Angeles, and leads the way for more school districts around the country to follow," said Jamie Oliver.
Jamie continued, " With flavored milk, kids are getting loads of sugar and other food additives they simply don't need to grow and learn. In the Food Revolution the little battles set us up for the next win. All these little battles count; they matter. It's not just milk. It's caring about what we feed kids 180 days a year."
Parents and students across the country showed they care on Thursday, June 9th, when Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution celebrated its first "Milk Day of Action," an event to engage their grassroots members in a coordinated way. More than 330 Food Revolutionaries were equipped with a 12-page planning "Playbook," detailed milk fact sheets (www.jamieoliver.com/us/foundation/jamies-food-revolution/__cms/uploads/JOFR_milkfactsheet_6.3.pdf), templates of letters to school officials, sample flyers, a Sweetened Milk Calculator, and most importantly, ways to connect with each other (www.facebook.com/home.phpsk=group_124526307624417). They staged assemblies, wrote letters to school officials, hung student-made posters marketing the benefits of unflavored milk and even donned white milk mustaches.
Some highlights from The Milk Day of Action include:
Amy Vachon staged quite a show in Watertown, Massachusetts. She and her team distributed white MOO wristbands to students and started a moo-in, where the entire cafeteria started mooing on cue. Kids from two classes and the whole after-school program decorated the cafeteria with pro-pure-milk artwork. Her team arranged for the white milk to be free courtesy of local pediatricians. 95% of the kids chose white milk. Amy told us, "It was a very positive first step! I'm so happy to read that others have gotten their school systems to make changes, and hoping the momentum will keep gaining strength for our kids."
Sarah Tymczyszyn from the Palos Verdes Unified School District in Southern California banded with other parents to convince her District Food Services Director to eliminate all sugary milk from elementary school meals (except on Fridays when chocolate milk will be offered as a treat) for a four-month trial. If all goes well, the flavored milk will be removed permanently.
Faced with a lot of resistance in an otherwise progressive school district, Amy Bartlett Bevan from South Berwick, Maine, used the Milk Day of Action to educate students and their parents about the benefits of plain milk. She had students fill milk jugs, one teaspoon at a time representing the nearly 2 gallons of sugar a single student drinks annually by consuming flavored milk and gathered signatures that were presented to their principal.
Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution sees an emerging trend to remove flavored milk: more than 40 school districts nationally have already started the process. Adding Los Angeles to the list will set an exciting precedent for other large districts to follow (mapalist.com/Public/pm.aspxmapid=187759).
More stories from the "Milk Day of Action," as well as resources and tool-kits for ways to improve school lunch as well as learn cooking skills, can be found at www.jamiesfoodrevolution.com. Jamie says, "Get involved, guys. It's easy to make change. You just need to get everyone in your school behind you. Teach your faculty and lunch cooks why white milk is better. They will become your ambassadors for the kids."
Note about the Jamie Oliver Food Foundation: Even after the TV show ends, the JOFF, the new nonprofit created to support Jamie Oliver's mission, will be providing activists with ongoing support and resources so that the milk campaign can continue.
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