No pop by default

Davis may make milk and water standard beverages for kids’ meals

City officials in Davis are considering a proposal that would require restaurants to make water or low-fat milk—rather than soda—the standard beverages offered with children’s meals.

At a Davis City Council meeting earlier this month, staff noted that about one-quarter of Davis students in fifth, seventh and ninth grades are obese, and “sugary beverages play a central and unique role in the obesity epidemic,” according to The Sacramento Bee. Julie Gallelo, executive director of First 5 Yolo, a county organization that advocates for children’s health, said the default beverage that comes with a kid’s meal is typically soda, and if parents want milk or water instead, it often comes at an extra cost.

The council instructed staff to draft an ordinance that would require servers in all of the city’s 120-plus restaurants to ask, “Would you like milk or water with that?” If passed, the ordinance would be the first of its kind in California.