HC Deb 11 March 2003 vol 401 c240W
David Burnside

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the likely impact on children's health of the proposal to remove the daily one pint milk token for low income families with children under five. [102430]

Ms Blears

The proposals for the reform of the Welfare Food Scheme are underpinned by the evidence of the scientific review undertaken by the Panel on Child and Maternal Nutrition of the Committee on the Medical Aspects of Food and Nutrition Policy (COMA) in 1999. The review concluded that the scheme does not meet the wider nutritional needs of pregnant women, mothers and young children due to its reliance solely upon milk provisions.

The reform proposals, which were published for consultation in October 2002, involve broadening the range of foods under the scheme to include fruit, vegetables, and cereal-based foods, in addition to milk.