In a memo to food service managers at public schools, the state of New York announced flexibilities amid a milk carton shortage recently.
Due to the unexpected nationwide shortage of paper milk cartons, many School Food Authorities are not able to obtain milk in half pints for their school meals programs. Although schools are expected to meet the fluid milk requirements to the greatest extent possible, supply chain disruptions, including disruptions that limit milk variety or affect serving size, are considered a temporary emergency condition. The New York State Education Department announced schools are allowed to pour milk from larger containers into individual cups, offer one type of milk instead of a variety, offer an alternate form of fluid milk such as low-fat or fat-free lactose-free, or as a last resort, not offer fluid milk altogether.
However, juice cannot be offered as a replacement, and schools must still adhere to National School Lunch Program guidelines.