Michelle Obama’s not going to like this one. This July, the Trump administration is bringing back chocolate milk to the National School Lunch program.
In the previous administration, Michelle Obama headed a program that aimed to fight childhood obesity. The program banned foods high in salt and flavored milk. From day one, the program drew much criticism. It also caused a lot of problems in school cafeterias. Namely, it was unpopular amongst students and required huge costs from the schools.
Moreover, Michelle Obama’s program was considered to be a stretch for the federal government. Thankfully, the Trump administration is on the way to dismantle the failing program.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Thursday published a new interim rule, due to take effect on July 1 after a period of public comment, which relaxes sodium limits and whole-grain requirements on school lunches and also allows flavored milk with 1 percent back into school cafeterias nationwide.
You hear that, kids? No more slop that looks like this. Chocolate milk is back!
By July, students will have much more appealing foods to choose from.
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue commended the decision:
This is not reducing the nutritional standards whatsoever. I wouldn’t be as big as I am today without flavored milk. Schools need flexibility in menu planning so they can serve nutritious and appealing meals. Schools want to offer food that students actually want to eat. It doesn’t do any good to serve nutritious meals if they wind up in the trash can.
Perdue is referencing the various criticisms the former first lady’s lunch program had. A significant amount of waste and costs were tied up to the program. Oftentimes, healthy meals were wasted. Students pitched them right into the garbage. They were too unappetizing.
The School Nutrition Association summed up the end result of Obama’s efforts:
Overly prescriptive regulations have resulted in unintended consequences, including reduced student lunch participation, higher costs, and food waste. Federal nutrition standards should be modified to help school menu planners manage these challenges and prepare nutritious meals that appeal to diverse student tastes.
For a while, school cafeterias were suffering and losing tons of money. Moreover, cafeteria workers felt guilty serving unappetizing meals to the kids. Oftentimes, the food left children hungry. It just wasn’t filling enough for the whole school day.
Now, schools will work to diversify menus that appeal to kids’ tastes. Thankfully, looks like the Michelle Obama slop will no longer appear on the menu.
When President Trump stepped into office, the School Nutrition Association knew an ally was finally with them. The administration heard them out and decided to implement some changes. Now, the doomed program can finally come to an end.
However, that’s not to say Michelle’s heart was in the right place. Obesity really is a problem in America. Unfortunately, her efforts were just a textbook case of big government unable to handle a program it should have no part in.
Unfortunately, she overstepped frequently. Just look at her White House spending versus Melania Trump.
Let’s hope the Trump administration can work with schools to finally bring back good lunches.