Should schools ban sugary drinks?

Some two weeks or so ago, I was invited by Fly Ace Corporation (importer of juice brands like Welch’s, Mott’s, Rauch, etc.) to a unique event. It was simply called Juice Party. With juicing as the new “it” activity when it comes to leading a healthy lifestyle, it wasn’t surprising that an event like this would eventually surface. Well, I’m all for fruits and juices so I was more than happy to check out what was in store.

Healthy Beverages Options Act 4021

There were lots of fruit juices at the venue, as expected. Welch’s, Mott’s, and Rauch have always been household favorites but I was excited to try the other brands in their roster too.

Healthy Beverages Options Act 4021

I’ve been drinking Mott’s Apple Juice ever since I was a little girl. My grandmother was a hoarder of all things imported at Duty Free and I lived with her, that’s why.

Healthy Beverages Options Act 4021
The same goes for Welch’s.

Healthy Beverages Options Act 4021

We could have as much juice as we wanted so it was a good chance to try different brands to take the guesswork out of grocery shopping.

Healthy Beverages Options Act 4021
I tried almost everything!
Healthy Beverages Options Act 4021

So anyhow, the guest of honor for the event was Atty. Leni Robredo, wife of the late DILG Secretary Jesse Robredo. Atty. Leni is pushing for the Healthy Beverages Options Act 4021, which aims to regulate the availability of beverages to children in schools. The proposed statute provides that all schools shall educate the students with regards to the effects of unhealthy sugary drinks on the body. HB 4021 seeks to ban softdrinks, drinks containing caffeine and additional sweeteners, and fruit-based drinks containing less than 50% real fruit juice from schools. The selling or provision of potable water, fruit juices with at least 50% real fruit juice content, and low or fat-free or calcium-enriched milk. Fly Ace Corporation supports the Healthy Beverages Options Act 4021.

Did you know that there are actually different kinds of fruit juice?

  1. 100% Juice – 100% real fruit content and derived directly from any fruit.
  2. Nectars – 24% – 50% fruit juice content with additional water and sweeteners such as honey, corn syrup, sugar, etc.
  3. Fruit Drinks – Contains a small proportion of fruit juice content and has sugar additives like citric acid, artificial flavors, colorants, and stabilizers. 

Even before the advent of this act, my children’s schools have refrained from selling sugary drinks like sodas and for that I am grateful. I remember sodas being the popular drink of choice at the school cafeteria when I was in gradeschool so this is definitely a step in the right direction. However, I was surprised when Atty. Leni said that some members of congress are actually opposing the Healthy Beverages Options Act 4021… saying something to the effect that children need these drinks. I’m like… why??? Do kids need sugar and caffeine? I mean, I’m all for freedom of choice and I admit to having let my own children try drinking sodas and other beverages deemed unhealthy on occasion but I am wholeheartedly for taking away caffeinated and super-sweetened drinks from schools. I say let the children be educated about what goes in their bodies and so they can make the choice themselves in the future.

Healthy Beverages Options Act 4021

So we recently finished a big bottle of Welch’s Grape Juice. Check out the ingredients. I love that there are no additional sweeteners, no artificial flavors and colors, and no preservatives! I always check the labels when I go grocery shopping so this actually comes as no surprise to me. 😀

Should schools ban sugary and caffeinated drinks? What do you think? Why or why not?

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