In an attempt to combat obesity, New York City has plans to prohibit the sale of oversize sodas and other sugary beverages.
The proposed ban would be the first in the nation to take such an extreme move. It would ban the sale of sweetened beverages over 16 ounces and would apply to bottled drinks as well as fountain sodas sold at restaurants, movie theaters, sports venues and street carts. A $200 fine would be imposed on any establishment that did not downsize.
The proposed ban would not apply to fruit juices, diet sodas, dairy-based beverages, or alcoholic drinks. The ban does not include beverages sold in grocery or convenience stores. Mayor Micheal Bloomberg told press on Wednesday that he “thinks it’s what the public wants the mayor to do.”
Stefan Friedman, a spokesman for the New York City Beverage Association claims that the proposal is zealous and that city officials should seeking other solutions which actually work to curb obesity. It is believed that the proposal will receive the approval of the city’s Board of Health, as all of its members have been appointed by Bloomberg.
Bloomberg has served three terms as mayor during which the city has campaigned aggressively against obesity. Previous moves by the city have included outlawing trans-fats in restaurant food and requiring that chain restaurants post calorie counts on their menus.
Previously Mayor Bloomberg has tried to restrict soda consumption by supporting a state tax on soda and restricting the use of food stamps to purchase soda, both measures failed.
The latest proposal by City Hall does not require outside approval, but they will have public hearings.
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