IARN — Milk is a part of the school meal program, but not always the first choice for children at the lunch table. So, Midwest Dairy is looking for ways to weave dairy into other parts of the meal.
Julie Mattson Ostrow, Midwest Dairy’s Vice President of Dairy Experience and Wellness, says Midwest Dairy created ways to allow children other options for nutritious dairy products.
“So, we’ve had some really good success in helping support various programs. One of them is a breakfast program, having something at mid-morning really helps to fuel their brain. We also work with schools to provide some support, especially in this last year with the pandemic, and having to serve in alternative methods, some of that were remote. One of the really exciting dairy foods schools are really turning towards are smoothies, made with milk, and made with yogurt. There’s also one super simple, kids love it in school, that we’re promoting, it’s called hot chocolate milk. This is simply chocolate milk that you have in a carton, that is warmed up and it’s amazing it’s delicious and how simple could that be.”
She says the work helps build trust between students and dairy and focuses on them choosing dairy outside the school building as well.
“They are 100 percent of our future consumers. So, the things that we can do to show them how delicious dairy is, and in various ways, will carry over into that next part of their life. So, we’re working to show them, not only does it taste good, and it’s good for you, but it’s also good for the planet. Kids want to know that, they want to know where their food is coming from, and that the people who produced it took care to do that and did so responsibility, and dairy farmers have an awesome story to share.”
Mattson Ostrow adds it’s important to incorporate milk and dairy products into school foodservice opportunities for students and adults to enjoy because of its nutritional value. Learn more and find resources available at midwestdairy.com.
(Story courtesy of NAFB)