New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has declared war on obesity and his current target is soda. Pop. Sweetened soft drinks of the extra large variety. Why? Because 58% of New York City adults and 40% of kids are obese or overweight and sweetened soda is the number one dietary cause of those conditions in America.
Speaking in favor [of the proposed ban on large sodas] was Kelly Brownell, director of the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at Yale University, who said sodas are the greatest source of added sugar in typical American diets and have no nutritional value.
"If people are served larger portions, they generally consume more," he said. "This to me is a bold and constructive policy completely supported by scientific evidence."
As you might expect, the Coca-Cola Company and the rest of the soft drink industry is doing everything it can to prevent the proposed ban from passing.
Coca-Cola Co has called the Bloomberg proposal an insult to New Yorkers, and the American Beverage Association, which represents that company as well as PepsiCo Inc and other soda makers, is fighting the measure.
"We believe it is misguided, unscientific, arbitrary and, if adopted, unlawful," said Jim McGreevy of the American Beverage Association at the hearing.
He said Americans are drinking less full-calorie sweetened drinks, yet obesity continues to rise.
New York's Board of Health votes on the proposed ban September 13 and if passed, it would go into effect next March.
Read the full article from Reuters here: New York City's proposed ban on big sugary sodas draws heated debate
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Photo Credit: Tony Alter