Remember Singapore had a national milk scheme where children were fed free milk in schools?

Did you know that in the past, the Singapore Government had introduced the School Milk Programme because many of Singapore’s children were underweight?

Back in the day, many of Singapore’s children were underweight, and hence, the scheme was introduced to improve the nutritional intake of children and to inculcate in them good nutritional habits.

school milk scheme

In addition, under this scheme, normal students could buy milk at discounted prices, while underweight children and those from needy families would receive milk free of charge.

The School Milk Scheme back then was well-known for its triangular milk packets which became iconic in Singapore.

Magnolia pyramid-shaped Tetra Pak

In the late 1950s, Magnolia started using Tetra Pak packages which had a unique pyramid shape.

While the school milk scheme was officially implemented by the Singapore government in 1974, the idea that milk could nourish and improve the nutrition of growing children goes back to 1936, when a free milk programme was introduced to the students at Pasir Panjang Boys’ School by a government health officer named J.W. Scharf.

milk distribution at a school 1950s

The School Milk Programme was later discontinued in 1988, due to high milk consumption’s link to obesity among schoolchildren.

It was also in the 1980s that Singapore’s living standards had climbed to a level where obesity levels among children had increased, and fewer were underweight.