New York Plans to Ban Sale of Big Sugary Drinks

New York Plans To Ban Sale Of Big Sugary Drinks

Wed 13 Jun 2012

Story by Food Revolution Team

New York City could soon be the first city to have a ban on large sugary drinks in eateries, movie theaters and street carts, regulated by the health department, across the city.

The proposal put forward by Mayor Michael Bloomberg, would put a ban on the sale of sweetened drinks, including soda, sports drinks, ‘energy’ drinks, sweetened teas and coffees and sweetened fruit drinks, over 16 ounces which contain more than 25 calories per 8 ounces from next March.

More than 50% of adults in New York are overweight or obese (1) and many drink one or more sugary drinks each day. Mayor Bloomberg believes that this ban is a necessary one in order to help combat the obesity epidemic and the number of deaths per year from overweight and obesity and the health complications they generate.

While there are many arguments and debates of the impact the sugar has on health and whether soda consumption is linked to obesity, Health commissioner of New York City, Dr. Farley blames sugary sweetened drinks for some of the increase in the rates of obesity in the city. Dr Farley has also stated that the city has seen higher rates of obesity in neighborhoods where soda consumption was more common.

The proposal (which would not apply to diet sodas, > 70% fruit juices without added sweetener, milkshakes or alcohol, nor would in apply to drinks sold in grocery stores or convenience stores) is anticipated to be submitted to the New York City Board of Health this week, it is then expected that there will be a series of public hearings during a 90 day comment period. During this time, the public, restaurants, vendors and sellers will be able to weigh in with their thoughts on the proposed ban. If passed, the ban could come into place as early as March 2013.

The beverage industry however has different views when it comes to limiting sugary drinks and linking them with the obesity epidemic, read this interview to see some of Coca-Cola’s views on the proposed ban by Bloomberg.

Find out more in the Mayor’s Task Force on Obesity and let us know what you think by posting on our facebook wall.

Read more about the sugar debate here.

The Food Revolution Team

1. NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene

Harvard University


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