…and good riddance

CNN.com – So much for the school milk carton – Dec 29, 2004

…Encouraged by a milk industry study that shows children drink more dairy when it comes in round plastic bottles, a growing number of schools are ditching those clumsy paper half-pint cartons many of us grew up with.

“Those damn square containers are awfully hard for kids,” says New Hampshire Agriculture Commissioner Steve Taylor, who has watched the trend spread to some 320 schools in New England. “Teachers say you can spend the whole lunch period just walking around and opening those containers.”

Good idea: easier to drink the milk if the kids can actually get to it!

My elder kids went through school during the ‘plastic bag’ period, and though the milk could be drunk, it was just very unappealing to drink anything from a plastic bag (per my kids). Now we’ll hear how the round bottles are ecologically unsound. My families’ answer: pack your own lunch. You know what you’re getting and you don’t pack things you cannot get into.


  1. Are the teachers so incompetent they can?t even teach a kid how to open a milk carton or are kids just devolving so rapidly they are approaching the IQ of, well? milk?

  2. Beary Potter says:

    How long has it been since you’ve met the challenge of the weak, waxy, cardboard type milk cartons in a school lunchroom? Some days, they can create quite a wrestling match!

  3. Ah, that brings back memories of grade school at a Catholic institution! The school didn’t have a cafeteria or serve hot meals (this was well over 30 years ago, remember); so we ate lunch in our classrooms. At lunchtime, the teachers used to collect all the change parents sent with their kids to buy milk, count up the number of regular and chocolate milks to be bought, and then designate two students to go to the milk machine and actually buy the milk. It was a very coveted assignment.

    In any case, I tend to agree. It’s not always easy for kids, particularly kindergarteners or first or second graders, to open those annoying cartons. Sometimes even I have trouble opening milk cartons.

  4. Hi! I came here from the blog Cut to Cure, and this post brought back fond memories for me of my grade school experience with the milk-in-bags. Everyone at my school could open them, but what we thought made our school district stop using them was all the other things we did with them.

    For starters, once you punch in the straw, this milk container is now a ready-made squirt gun. But the best was that if you threw them against a wall, they splattered most satisfactorily all over the place. I’d always assumed the district took them away because we made such a mess.

    For the record, though, I drink milk all the time (then and now), and never had undue trouble getting into cartons. My gut-reaction to pulling the cartons in favor of bottles is that the kids are wusses.