Lawmaker Encourages More Milk Consumption

Assemblyman Billy Jones thinks more New York state should do more to encourage people to drink milk, not less.

That’s why Jones, D-Plattsburgh, vehemently disagrees with a proposal to ban flavored milk in New York City’s 1,200 schools. During a Joint Legislative Public Hearing on Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposed 2020-21 state budget, several state legislators joined Jones in pitching ideas and programs as well as asking questions about issues in the state’s agriculture industry. Richard Ball, state agriculture commissioner, told Jones state officials are working to showcase New York-produced products once a week in New York City schools and are working to increase the share of new New York products, particularly dairy, in all New York schools through programs like the Farm to Table program and the No Student Goes Hungry Program.

“We’re going to put a pilot program out about getting rid of the half pints we grew up with,” Ball said. “There’s very little imagination in the creation of that half-pint. It looks very much the same as it did when you were in school. We’re looking at bulk milk containers, keeping it colder, keeping it fresher and saving money for the schools, things like that. School milk and getting more school milk, not less. We’ve seen a decline in fluid milk consumption. I think that’s something we’re going to continue to look at.”

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