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State wants to regulate drink choices at daycares

READ MORE: State wants to regulate drink choices at daycares

State lawmakers have their hands full this week coming up with a new budget. And as if that weren't enough, the House also approved a bill that legislates how much juice and milk kids can get in private daycares.

If this bill becomes a law, it will prohibit private child daycares from serving sugar-sweetened beverages to kids of all ages. Southeastern Preschool Educational Center Administrator Amy Selders thinks it's a good idea.

"As much as we know about childhood obesity and things like that, it's much more prevalent now and anything we can do to keep the children healthy, provide them with healthy food choices when they're young and then hopefully they'll continue to make those choices when they're older," says Selders. "I feel like that's a great idea."

The new legislation would also prohibit serving whole milk to kids two years or older, serving flavored milk to any child, and would limit juice to six ounces a day. Juice also could not be served in a bottle.

But critics say the government would have too much control over how parents decide to raise their kids, which is likely part of the reason the state standards were recently toned down.

Wake County Representative Paul Stam says "this is a prime example of a well-intentioned idea (but) parents who choose child care should not be subjected to the nanny-state mentality that government always knows best for the family."

This bill must be approved by the Senate and signed into law before it would affect daycares. If passed, the new restrictions would not include 100% fruit juice.

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