Nearly 160 million children around the world currently receive and benefit from dedicated school milk programmes. The benefits of providing school children with milk are plentiful: dairy’s well-known natural nutrient-richness provides an abundant supply of high-quality protein, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, iodine, and vitamins B2 and B12.
On World School Milk Day, over 100 participants from around the world joined IDF for a virtual seminar that discussed its latest bulletin on school milk programmes, as well as speakers from the US and India, who presented case studies of current programmes and their important impact on childhood nutrition.
In addition to the celebrations, today also sees an important development as IDF announces its latest project – the development of a Global School Milk Knowledge Hub, to be launched in early 2021. This interactive online hub will bring together important information on the role of milk and dairy products in healthy diets produced by sustainable food systems and the UN sustainable development goals.
It will provide case study examples and data to assist those wishing to implement school milk programmes in their country and will be an invaluable source of information for those who want to learn more about school milk programmes worldwide. IDF with its vast network and knowledge on the topic is a key element in bringing all this information together.
IDF Director General Caroline Emond: “On World School Milk Day 2020, we’re proud to announce that IDF is preparing to take an exciting next step towards achieving its vision of ‘Helping to nourish the world with safe and sustainable dairy’ with an announcement of the imminent launch of our Global School Milk Knowledge Hub. We look forward to sharing further details over the next few months”.
The importance of school milk worldwide School milk programmes play an important role in the nutrition of children, helping to address issues of malnutrition and encouraging healthy eating habits. Evidence showing the multiple benefits generated through school feeding programmes is growing. Research has demonstrated that the school environment can have a major impact on attitudes to food, with school milk programmes helping to address issues of malnutrition and encouraging healthy eating habits. Analysis shows that a quality education, combined with a guaranteed package of health and nutrition interventions at school, such as school feeding, can contribute to child and adolescent development.
About IDF’s school milk bulletin
Following on from its previous research into the area, earlier this year, IDF shared an extensive review of global school milk programmes, introducing data on their important impact on childhood nutrition. Compiling research from global experts in the field on different programmes around the world, IDF bulletin ‘The contribution of school milk programmes to the nutrition of children worldwide’ provides insights on the range of products, along with raw data and a literature review. Available to download now, the 2020 edition includes a review on the evidence of the nutritional benefits of these programmes, offering new perspectives into the global impact of school milk programmes.