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Friday, April 02, 2010

orange cows?

We watched Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution last week and were completely disgusted and saddened by the way children are "nourished" in the school systems. Growing up we only had "hot lunch" once in a while since our parents were already paying tuition, uniforms, etc. We were also picky eaters who wouldn't eat outside our pizza/hamburger/taco comfort zone so like the kids on the show, would have ended up throwing much of our lunch out. We ate our home made lunches, though not much healthier I am sure.

Many years later, sister and I are both vegan, which has caused us to go beyond reading ingredient labels and start cooking real food. It's been a great journey and we are constantly finding new vegetables, grains, spices and recipes to try. My niece is also vegan, so we have to be slightly more kid friendly at times, but she is getting better at trying new things. She already eats way more vegetables than we had at her age. I think the list stopped at corn for us, which I now know is a grain and not a vegeatable. So maybe we ate zero.

Anyway, my niece brought home a St. Patrick's Day project which was a milk carton with grass sprouting out the top. There was a picture of a bald leprechaun pasted on one side and on the other side a little rhyme about helping him to grow some hair. She was over the picture and poem so she tore them off last night. I didn't give the milk carton much thought since it seemed like a basic elementary school project. Later on, I asked my sister had she seen the plant and she took a look at it.

I nearly lost it. It wasn't even regular milk. It was one of those flavored milks like they showed on Jamie Oliver's program. It wasn't even chocolate or strawberry- it's called "orange splash". Is that like melting a 50/50 bar and drinking it? I have no idea. I am glad my niece does not eat the school lunches, but I am still disappointed and disgusted that this is offered to children. People get upset about cigarettes being marketed to children and so on but this is equally, if not more disgusting and dangerous in my opinion. Child obesity and diabetes are on the rise. There are 24 grams of sugar in a half pint of this "milk". The best part is that the first ingredient is fat free milk, and the second ingredient is high fructose corn syrup. Are they going to start making "got (orange) milk?" shirts now?

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