Wednesday, November 26, 2014
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
The Wall Street Journal (11/25, Tracy, Subscription Publication) reports that the Administration and the FDA are planning on unveiling final rules expanding calorie labeling on Tuesday. The rules will require restaurants with at least 20 locations to display calorie counts on their menus. In addition, the rules will apply to amusement parks, convenience stores, movie theaters, and others. The rules have been repeatedly delayed, and have faced significant opposition from the food industry.
The Washington Post (11/24, Dennis) reports that, according to FDA Commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg, “Americans eat and drink about one-third of their calories away from home,” and as a result “people today expect clear information about the products they consume.” Hamburg expressed hope that the new rules will aid people in making “more informed choices” about the food they eat. The Post adds that “activists who for years have pushed for more transparent and consistent menu labeling,” as a means of managing the nation’s epidemic of obesity, “praised the FDA’s action.”
Bloomberg News (11/25, Edney) reports that, among the critics of the rules were grocery stores, who cited concern that “calculating and posting calories would curtail offerings in their fresh prepared foods sections, because the offerings are constantly changing.” According to Rob Rosado, director of government relations with the Food Marketing Institute, “testing and labeling them all could have cost the industry as much as $1 billion.”
The New York Times (11/25, Tavernise, Strom, Subscription Publication) adds, “Perhaps the most surprising element of the new rules was the inclusion of alcoholic beverages, which had not been part of an earlier proposal.” FDA officials said “Beverages served in food establishments that are on menus and menu boards will be included, but a mixed drink at a bar will not.”
Also reporting on the story are USA Today (11/25, Horovitz), Reuters (11/25, Clarke, Athavaley)The Hill (11/25, Devaney), Politico (11/25, Evich)Yahoo! News (11/25, Jalonick), the Minneapolis Star Tribune (11/25), and in the NPR (11/24) “The Salt” Blog.