February 13, 2020
Sen. Nancy Skinner
State Capitol, Room 5094
Sacramento, CA 95814
Re: Support for Senate Joint Resolution Relative to Federally Subsidized School Meals
Dear Senator Skinner:
I am writing on behalf of Farm Sanctuary and our more than 1.2 million members and constituents to express support for your Senate Joint Resolution Relative to Federally Subsidized School Meals. This sensible measure urges the U.S. Congress to stop promoting the consumption of cows’ milk through federally supported school meals, and to require fluid milk substitutes for cows’ milk without requiring paperwork from a doctor or parent/guardian.
Passing this measure will make an important statement and encourage long overdue reforms in agriculture policies that have served industry interests at the expense of human health, animal welfare, and environmental sustainability. The dairy requirement in federally subsidized school meals is helping to perpetuate an unsustainable industry by purchasing surplus dairy products and dumping them in school feeding programs, where students are often pressured to take milk that they cannot digest.¹ This program is increasingly being recognized as racially discriminatory, since lactose intolerance is common among members of minority groups including African-Americans, Asian-Americans, Native Americans, and Hispanic Americans.
Milk production levels have continued to increase in the United States in recent years despite the fact that total milk consumption is falling,² and it makes no sense for government programs to continue incentivizing this excessive production. It’s time to end government subsidies that are perpetuating this failing industry.
Thank you for introducing this sensible measure.
President & Co-Founder
1 Monica Eng, Lactose intolerance: When drinking school milk makes students feel sick, CHICAGO TRIBUNE, November 26, 2012.
2 United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service. “Dairy Data.” https://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/dairy-data/.
Accessed February 13, 2020. See Data Sets “U.S. milk production and related data (quarterly and annual)” and “Fluid beverage milk sales quantities by product (Annual).”