Currently browsing posts about: Calorie-labeling
If you missed the fight between restaurant trade associations and the New York City Health Department over calorie labeling, you get another chance: San Francisco. San Francisco’s city attorney wants fast food places not only to post calories, but also saturated fat, sodium, and carbohydrates (check out the link for all the documents in this case). Is this a good idea? Aren’t calories enough?
Center for Science in the Public Interest has posted a collection of photos of New York City menu boards with calorie labeling. Take a look and see what you think of how this requirement is working.
The NYC Health Department has just published its baseline data for evaluation of the effects of the calorie labeling initiative. The results of a survey of 7000 diners at 275 fast food places show that just 4% of customers looked at calorie labeling when it was hidden in brochures, wall signs, and tray liners, – except at Subway. At Subway, the 31% of customers looking at calorie information chose lower calorie items. OK, the reduction was just 50 calories per meal on average, but this study was done before the labels went up on menu boards. Stay tuned.
Thanks to Hugh Joseph for alerting me to this remarkable beverage from Baskin-Robbins: a large “Heath Shake.” This energy drink weighs in at 2310 calories and, according to his count (I didn’t bother), 73 ingredients! Unless this is a joke? I can never tell with the Internet…
Public health groups have filed an amicus curiae brief in support of New York City’s calorie labeling initiative. If you want to see what one looks like, here it is (I signed it too). Michael Jacobson tells me that the Center for Science in the Public Interest has received documents in response to its Freedom of Information Act request. These say that the FDA told the restaurant industry a year ago it would not interfere with the City’s proposal, suggesting that the FDA does not view federal laws as blocking calorie labeling. In the meantime, the labels are drifting up on menu boards. Go take a look! Next: will they do any good?
New York City readers: Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) is collecting photos of calorie labels on restaurant and take out menu boards. Have a digital camera or cell phone handy? They are asking for photos of menu boards and close ups of the calorie information from Starbucks, Chipotle, Quiznos, Jamba Juice, Subway, etc. Upload the photos at www.flickr.com. This requires establishing a free account. Once you’ve done that, join the group “CSPI Menus” and upload. If that doesn’t work, you can mail photos to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!