WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Good news for milk-pushing moms this September: kid-favorite flavored milks will have less calories and sugar, according to the Milk Processor Education Program.
MilkPEP—which runs the National Milk Mustache "got milk?" Campaign—said on Monday that flavored milk cartons will contain fewer than 150 calories and 22 grams of total sugar on average this school year.
Milk provides calcium, vitamin D and potassium that is critical for children's development but in short supply in kids' diets, according to the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
Milk is the number one food source in America for these essential nutrients, according to MilkPEP's.
Cartons of flavored milk will carry just 31 more calories than white milk as the result of a five-year process of industry reformulations aiming to "provide nutritious new products with the same great taste kids love," said MilkPEP.
The healthy trend among milk processors will reduce added sugar in fat-free and low-fat chocolate milk by 38 percent.
"There are a lot of kids that don't want to drink plain white milk; they really love drinking flavored milk and that's very important for the essential nutrients in milk," said MilkPEP CEO Vivien Godfrey. "It's a happy balance between some added sugars but making sure that the kids actually drink the milk as opposed to taking the white milk on the lunch line and not in fact drinking it."