It’s Not The “Got Rice?” Campaign, But Here’s Susan

on Friday, Jan. 14th

After more than a decade, the dairy industry’s milk promotion campaign is still going strong, with relevant and sometimes surprising sex symbols sporting the lacto-’stache. (Recently: Sophia Vergara, Lauren Conrad, Jennifer Hudson, and Apolo Ohno, among others).

The National Milk Mustache Campaign’s newest “got milk?” ad featuring actress Susan Sarandon is being released just as she’s re-emerging within an edgy, if ironic, scene (you can read about her foray into ping-pong here). Sarandon was one of People’s 50 Most Beautiful, and even as rumors fly about her romantic involvement with her significantly younger business partner, she’s consistently praised as being a down-to-earth Hollywood mom to her three children. Which is perhaps why she’s also the face of the related “Pour One More” campaign. It’s a push to get mothers to pour their kids another cuppa (cold milk), being paired with a dairy-industry funded study that reports nine out of ten  Americans “aren’t getting the essential nutrients we need.” Naturally, the industry’s solution is to “Pour One More.”

But, we checked in with UC Berkeley’s Nutritionist Emeritus Joanne Ikeda, who agrees that one of the predictors of consuming a more nutritious diet is drinking milk on a daily basis.  (Of course, vegans and the lactose intolerant have plenty of non-dairy options to get their calcium). Ikeda conducted studies focused on “minority” populations living in California including Mexican Americans, African Americans, and Native Americans. She told us by email, “I am concerned that soft drinks have replaced milk in the diets of teenagers and pre-teens. Only 13.5 percent of teenage girls and 36.3 percent of teenage boys age 12 to 19 in the U.S. get the recommended daily amount of calcium.”

If you are going to give your youngun’ milk, we’d suggest Strauss Milk, from the spectacular and sprawling Tomales Bay dairy. And further, we have a perfect candidate for the next “got milk?” ad – complete with accompanying media and a hook, to boot.

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