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Parkway Schools will Celebrate New Year with New Milk Choices

Parkway students will see a change in their school milk choices when they return from winter break in January. They will participate in a school milk test jointly sponsored by Prairie Farms, the Milk Processor Education Program and the St. Louis Dairy Council. The test will experiment with new flavors and packaging to help increase milk consumption in schools. About 165,000 students at almost 300 area schools will participate in the school milk test. The participating schools will be divided into three different groups, which will each receive a combination of enhanced packaging with colorful, kid-friendly graphics and new flavors of milk including an improved chocolate and the introduction of strawberry and vanilla. The test will begin on January 3 and run through the end of the school year. “Everyone knows that milk is a great source of calcium and other essential nutrients, but for years milk has been losing ground in schools to other beverages like soda and juice,” said International Dairy Foods Association Vice President Tom Nagle. “We know that children will drink milk if it is presented in packaging and flavors that they like and this test will tell us exactly what they prefer. Then, we’ll take the findings of this test and share them with other milk processors and schools to help improve school milk offerings across the country.” The test will divide the participating schools into various categories. One group of Parkway schools will have new milk packaging and offer white, strawberry, chocolate and vanilla flavored milk. Another group of Parkway schools will offer the same flavors but with packaging with different graphics. The study also includes schools that are making no changes to their milk selections (none in Parkway) as the control group. Currently Parkway schools offer skim white milk, whole white milk, 1 percent white milk and 1 percent chocolate milk. The study will add 1 percent vanilla milk, 1 percent strawberry milk and an enhanced 1 percent chocolate milk, replacing what has been available.