HARRISBURG – Rep. Dan Moul (R-Adams), Republican chairman of the House Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee, joined with Reps. John Lawrence (R-Chester) and Clint Owlett (R-Tioga/Bradford) in praising congressional action to put whole milk back in the nation’s schools.
Moul, Lawrence and Owlett each represent rural, dairy-producing districts, and have been leading efforts in Pennsylvania to restore whole and reduced-fat milk to school lunch menus. Last spring, they held a joint news conference on the topic with representatives of Pennsylvania’s dairy industry. The House later passed a package of bills, sponsored by Lawrence, that included a measure to permit Pennsylvania schools to purchase and dispense whole and reduced fat (2%) Pennsylvania milk for students. The bill received overwhelming approval in the House, but the Senate failed to act.
They released the following statement:
“Whole milk is delicious and nutritious and should be available to our school children. Whole and reduced fat milk was removed from our nation’s school lunch menus during the Obama administration on the premise that it would curb childhood obesity. However, this regulation has been detrimental to Pennsylvania school children and our Commonwealth’s struggling dairy industry.
“Fat-free and skim milk are now the only choices available to children through school lunch programs. This milk lacks the flavor and appeal of whole milk and a lot of it ends up in the trash, depriving children of its health and nutritional benefits, and turning off many would-be milk drinkers for a lifetime.
“Agriculture is Pennsylvania’s No. 1 industry and dairy is its largest segment. A decline in milk consumption has a significant impact on Pennsylvania dairy farmers and the more than 52,000 jobs the industry provides. In fact, Pennsylvania has lost more than 2,100 dairy farms since the federal regulation went into effect.”
Moul, Lawrence and Owlett are now praising efforts by U.S. Rep. Glenn “GT” Thompson, who represents the 15th Congressional District and chairs the U.S. House Committee on Agriculture, for getting his bipartisan Whole Milk for Healthy Kids Act through committee and on its way to consideration by the full House.
“We agree with Thompson and the bipartisan group of lawmakers who supported his bill that science does not back up claims that whole milk is unhealthy for school children. We are grateful for his leadership in Congress to restore whole and reduced fat milk to the nation’s school lunch program and bring much-needed relief for our struggling dairy farmers.”
Representative Dan Moul
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Donna Pinkham