Echo Park resident and caterer Jennie Cooks and Silver Lake resident Rebecca Crane have helped launch a campaign seeking to remove a popular staple from L.A. Unified cafeterias: chocolate-flavored milk. Chocolate milk, and its pink cousin strawberry milk, contain too much sugar, according to many food and health activists. On Monday, concerned parents and food activists bearing jugs of milk filled with sugar showed up at a meeting of L.A. Unified food managers. That meeting was canceled at the last minute but the anti-flavored milk rally, organized with the help of Cooks and Crane’s Food for Lunch group, continued outside the district headquarters. There, on a grassy traffic median, the food activists were interviewed by British chef and TV host Jamie Oliver, who has been refused access to school cafeterias.
What’s so bad about chocolate milk? One of the activist on hand explained that to the L.A. Times:
“A school carton of chocolate milk has 2 teaspoons of sugar, said Emily Ventura, an organizer of the demonstration. A child who drinks two cartons every school day for a year would consume 14 cups, or nearly a gallon jug full, of sugar, she said.”
A district official told the Times that L.A. Unified’s dairy contract expires in June, adding that “certainly anything is on the table as we go through the budget options.”