Parliamentary activity
Parliamentary drop-in event
  
The SNMA parliamentary drop-in took place on 2nd November, with 13 MPs attending, including Shadow Defra Secretary Rachael Maskell and Shadow Education Secretary Angela Rayner.

Following the event, we sent the MPs who attended photos of themselves with Dr Hilary, a local press release and a briefing. Labour MPs Alex Cunningham and John Cruddas published an account of the event on their websites. Shadow Education Secretary Angela Rayner MP and Conservative MP Sheryll Murray highlighted their support for school and nursery milk on Twitter.

  
School Food APPG presentation
    
On Wednesday 16th November saw Dr Hilary gave a presentation to the School Food APPG in the House of Parliament, with around 30 stakeholders from relevant sectors there to find out more about the health benefits of school milk.
 
The presentation was extremely well received and through post-event discussions and actions we re-engaged on school and nursery milk issues with SNMA stakeholders including Linda Cregan, the CEO of the Children’s Food Trust and co-chair of the School Food Plan Alliance; and Jackie O’Neil and Cat Byrne of the DfE Healthy Pupils Unit. At the event, we also discussed the possibility of Dr Hilary featuring in a school milk video with Sally Shadrack, chair of Lead Association for Catering in Education (LACA).
 

Meetings and engagements 
 
We currently have meetings arranged with:

  • Mary Glindon MP, Shadow Farming Minister (17th January)
  • Diana Johnson MP, Vice Chair of the School Food APPG and Vice Chair of the Fit and Healthy Childhood Group (30th January)
 
We are arranging the details of a meeting with:

  • Lucy Powell MP, former Shadow Education Secretary
 
We are also approaching further individuals from our key stakeholder list and the MPs in the top ten areas of our obesity and dental health league table that we have not yet met.
  
  
House of Commons oral questions
  
During a Defra oral questions session in the House of Commons, Labour MP Nic Dakin asked a question supplied to him by the SNMA on the assessment the Government has made of the importance of the provision of school and nursery milk in supporting dairy farmers. Farming Minister George Eustice responded that there was a European Union scheme to support school milk, which is “worth a few million pounds”, but played down its importance compared to the nursery milk scheme.  
  
  
House of Commons written questions
    
We have secured the tabling of seven written questions over the last month. Labour MP George Howarth tabled three written questions on school milk and the Eatwell Guide. Additionally, SNP MP Martyn Day has tabled a question asking how much milk is purchased by nursery and primary schools.
 
Three have received answers. Martyn Day asked what representations Defra has received from the dairy industry since the March 2016 publication of the revised Eatwell Guide. Farming Minister George Eustice said that he holds quarterly meeting with DairyUK, the NFU and AHDB Dairy.
 
Mr Day also asked the Education Secretary how much milk is consumed in nursery and primary schools. Children’s Minister Edward Timpson said that the Department do not keep records of milk consumption.
 
Labour MP Nic Dakin asked what steps the DfE is taking to ensure that school pupils and their parents or guardians are aware of the health benefits of nursery and school milk consumption. Mr Timpson responded that the DfE has encouraged schools to create a culture that promotes health, and that school governing boards are responsible for their food policies. Additionally, Mr Timpson stated that the Department are working closely with stakeholders on plans to implement the new European School Milk Scheme from August 2017.

  
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