Tetra Laval, the parent company of Tetra Pak, Sidel and DeLaval, today launched a school milk program together with the government of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar.
The three-year program will benefit approximately 45,000 primary school children, helping to improve the consumption of this nutrient-rich drink at critical growth ages and to boost development of the local dairy industry.
“The school milk program is an initiative by Tetra Laval and Tetra Pak to play an active part in the development of Myanmar. For decades, our Food for Development Office has worked with governments around the world to promote children’s health and education by initiating and supporting school milk programs,” said Rusty Kekuewa, Tetra Pak Vice President for South and Southeast Asia.
Milk is a complete food product that contains vital nutrients required for children’s growth. Its benefits include calcium that builds stronger bones and teeth; proteins for the creation of new cells and repair of damaged cells; vitamins B and C for development of brain cells; vitamin A for eyes and eyesight; and vitamin D for absorption of calcium.
The Myanmar school milk program commences with the new school year that starts this month. It will provide packaged ready-to-drink, long-life UHT* milk at school to children in Nay Pyi Taw, Yangon and Mandalay for the next three years. The Ministry of Education has nominated 205 schools to participate in this program.
“The school milk program will not only improve nutrition for school children, but it will help create a milk drinking habit throughout our country. This will provide health benefits for all and benefit the development of the dairy industry in Myanmar,” said a government official.
Initially, milk for the school milk program will be processed and packed in neighboring Thailand. “In time we hope that manufacturers in Myanmar will see an opportunity for providing UHT milk locally, supplied by local dairy farmers,” said Kekuewa.
Through its Food for Development Office and network, Tetra Pak cooperates closely with governments, development agencies, NGOs, local dairy processors and farmers to support school milk programs and dairy industry development. In 2012 8.2 billion packages of milk and other nutritious drinks in Tetra Pak packages were provided to 67 million children in schools in over 60 countries.