Students and MPPs will milk "cows" at Queen's Park to celebrate World School
Milk Day

MISSISSAUGA, ON, Sept. 23 /CNW/ - Students from a Toronto elementary school will converge on the front lawn of Queen's Park to experience, first-hand, where milk comes from and to celebrate World School Milk Day. The event takes place at 11:00 am on Tuesday, September 29.

World School Milk Day is an initiative of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. It is designed to raise public awareness about the importance of school milk programs and the health benefits they provide to students. More than 40 countries will celebrate this year.

Registered Dietitian, Shannon Crocker says "Children need healthy foods and drinks at lunch to help them perform their best in school. Sugary beverages like fruit flavoured drinks and soft drinks provide a lot of calories with little nutritional value and they displace healthier options kids need to optimize learning. And great news for kids, the chocolate milk that they love is just as nutritious as white milk," Crocker adds.

Almost one million elementary school students in more than 2,600 Ontario schools will celebrate World School Milk Day with a free carton of milk provided by Ontario dairy farmers, processors and milk distributors. In 2009-10, the school milk program is expected to operate in more than 2,800 schools, representing more than 70 per cent of Ontario's elementary schools.

The Queen's Park event will include nearly 70 elementary students, school officials, school milk program volunteers, dairy industry representatives and MPPs. The Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, and the Minister of Children and Youth Services both hope to join the students in milking the life-sized "cows".

Several school milk program volunteers and supporters will be recognized for their outstanding service and dedication. Each year, thousands of volunteers donate more than a million hours of time to ensure that elementary students are able to have milk with their lunch. As a result, millions of Ontario students have benefited from the program over the past 22 years.

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Ontario World School Milk Day is officially recognized September 30, however celebrations in individual schools may be held on any given day throughout September. Ontario WSMD is made possible only by the co-operation of schools and the entire dairy industry in Ontario, milk processors, milk distributors and dairy farmers.


For further information: For further information: For media inquiries about interviews with dietitian Shannon Crocker or other spokespeople, contact: Roy Maxwell - (905) 637-2463, (905) 483-2463 (cell),

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