Chocolate milk may be banned from Los Angeles schools

Chocolate milk, with all of its added sugar, has become a new target for people concerned with childhood obesity in Los Angeles. Most of the milk consumed in schools is chocolate milk.

Damian Dovarganes / AP
In this photo taken Tuesday, May 3, 2011, chocolate milk cartons are seen at the Belmont Senior High cafeteria in Los Angeles. With schools under increasing pressure to combat child obesity by offering healthier food, the national staple of kids’ cafeteria trays has come under attack over the very ingredient that helps make it so popular:sugar.

As concern grows about child obesity, more people are asking why sugary flavored milk remains a staple of school lunches across the country.

Flavored milk makes up about 70 percent of milk consumed in schools. Most of that milk is chocolate.

Los Angeles schools Superintendent John Deasy is the latest official to push to remove flavored milk from school menus. He's supported by many parents and even British TV chef Jamie Oliver. Oliver has made revamping school food one of his signature causes.

Others argue that if flavored varieties are removed, students won't drink milk. A number of medical groups and the milk industry point to studies saying children who drink flavored milk meet more of their nutrient needs and aren't heavier than non-milk drinkers.

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