Health officials in Missouri are welcoming the agreement by the nation’s largest soft drink makers to stop selling their sugar-filled products in the nation’s public schools. It’s a gradual phase-out of Coke, Pepsi, 7-Up, and the like over the next four years. State Health Director Julie Eckstein says it’s great news that these private companies have taken it upon themselves to do something to deal with the high levels of obesity among young people. Eckstein says about 85 percent of Missouri’s schools will implement the changes with the start of the next school year, with soft drinks being replaced by such things as bottled water and fruit juices. It’s hoped that by cutting down on the fat and calories being ingested by kids, the obesity rates among children will be reduced, as well.