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New York Soda Ban: Bloomberg Proposes End To Sale Of Large Sugary Beverages

New York Soda Ban: Bloomberg Proposes End To Sale Of Large Sugary Beverages


New York City Mayor Michael  Bloomberg plans to propose a far-reaching municipal ban on sales  of large-size sugary beverages by restaurants, mobile food  carts, movie theaters and delis, his administration said on  Wednesday.

A document outlining the proposal said it was aimed at  fighting an epidemic of obesity, citing public health statistics  showing that 58 percent of New York City adults and nearly 40  percent of city public school students are obese or overweight.

The proposal defines sugary drinks as beverages that are  “sweetened with sugar or another caloric sweetener that contain  more than 25 calories per 8 fluid ounces and contains less than  51 percent milk or milk substitute by volume as an ingredient.”

It would impact drinks sold in containers larger than 16  ounces, but would not impact the sale of diet soda or  dairy-based drinks.

Bloomberg’s efforts to correct unhealthy behaviors have  included a campaign to cut down on salt and a ban on trans fats  in restaurant food, along with a requirement that chain  restaurants display calorie counts.

In 2003, the city banned smoking in bars and restaurants,  generating howls of protest at the time from smokers and  non-smokers who saw it as a case of government creeping into  private lives, but the law has since become widely accepted.

The proposed ban on sugary drinks requires the approval of  the city’s Board of Health. It will be submitted to the board on  June 12.

In a statement, a spokesman for the New York City Beverage  Association challenged Bloomberg’s assertion that the  consumption of soda was driving obesity rates.

“It’s time for serious health professionals to move on and  seek solutions that are going to actually curb obesity,” said  spokesman Stefan Friedman. “These zealous proposals just  distract from the hard work that needs to be done on this  front.”



by Edith Honan and Steve Gorman



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