House passes scale-back of menu labeling rules

Those requirements apply to chain restaurants or food establishments which have 20 or more locations along with also also vending machine operators who own or operate 20 or more machines.

Instead of listing the total calories contained in a menu item when the item will be offered for sale, such as a shared appetizer, businesses could be allowed to provide just the calories per serving in which “multiserving” menu item, without disclosing total calories.

The legislation could also allow certain businesses, such as carry-out restaurants whose majority of customers order meals off-premises, to post such information on the internet as the sole method of disclosure instead of on the premises of the business.

Study: Don't be swayed by independent restaurants when trying to cut calories

If a restaurant or food establishment violates any part of the legislation, the bill could allow 0 days for the business to correct the violation.

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers introduced the legislation, called the Common Sense Nutrition Disclosure Act.
“This kind of bill, at its very core, will be about flexibility. Flexibility for businesses to meet the requirements of the rule along with also also present This kind of calorie information in a way which makes sense for them along with also also their customers,” the Republican who represents eastern Washington said on the House floor Tuesday.

“This kind of legislation provides flexibility in how restaurants provide the nutritional information. the item makes the item easier for customers to actually see along with also also understand the information because the item’s displayed where customers actually place orders, including by phone, online or through mobile apps,” she said. “By bringing This kind of rule into the 21st century, customers can trust which they’re getting reliable information in a way which will be easy to access along with also also will be customer-user friendly.”

Do restaurant menu calorie counts change the way we eat?

On the additional hand, consumers want to make informed choices about what they eat, along with also also the bill which passed the House could make which harder for them, said Colin Schwartz, deputy director of legislative affairs at the Center for Science inside the Public Interest.

“to ensure’s the importance of menu labeling, along with also also we see via the research which actually, when consumers are given This kind of information, they actually can make lower-calorie choices, along with also also restaurants can also come out with lower-calorie options,” Schwartz said.

“On the flip side, for not just demand however supply, restaurants are mindful of their customers being more health-conscious. There’s a lot of movement towards This kind of, along with also also menu labeling will be just one big piece of the puzzle in providing more transparency,” he said. “So restaurants, we’ve seen, have reformulated their foods to be lower-calorie because the item can be quite shocking to see some of your favorite menu items have so many calories.”

What the science says about calorie labeling

The scientific literature provides mixed results regarding the impact calorie labeling has on public health along with also also consumer behavior.

A review of 53 studies on restaurant calorie labeling found limited evidence which menu labeling affects how many calories a customer may purchase at fast-food restaurants along with also also just some evidence which the item may lower calories purchased at additional types of restaurants or in cafeteria settings. which review paper was published inside the journal Obesity in October.
Eating out costs you 0 calories

“Overall, when you are looking at average consumer response to labeling, there doesn’t appear to be much difference in calories purchased before along with also also after labeling,” said Dr. Jason Block, a general internal medicine physician along with also also assistant professor at Harvard Medical School, who was a co-author of the paper.

“however some people clearly do respond to labeling, along with also also labeling will be nearly universally well-liked, irrespective of political affiliation,” he said. “Food retailers also appear to be changing some of their brand new offerings to be lower-calorie, perhaps in response to labeling.”

For instance, one study found which out of 37 restaurant chains in King County, Washington, there was a significant trend among the sit-down chains toward lowering the amount of calories, saturated fat along with also also sodium on their entree menus at 18 months after the implementation of mandatory menu labeling regulation.

Yet overall, the entrees still exceeded dietary guidelines, along with also also the levels of calories, saturated fat along with also also sodium remained excessive, the researchers wrote inside the study’s abstract. which study was published inside the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition along with also also Dietetics in 2012.
Some of the same researchers behind which study published separate research inside the American Journal of Public Health which found an increase in how many King County residents were aware of along with also also used calorie information after the implementation of menu labeling laws via 2008 to 2010.

The study, which involved 3,132 King County residents, found which the percentage of residents who were aware of along with also also used calorie information climbed via 8.1% to 24.8%.

Should food labels include exercise 'equivalents'?

Still, those studies were on a narrow group of consumers in a specific area in Washington along with also also showed only a correlation between calorie labeling along with also also consumer behavior, not a cause-along with also also-effect relationship, Block said.

Also, he added, no control groups were available inside the studies to compare study results. So more research will be needed to determine the true benefits of calorie labeling on public health.

“We also don’t know how consumers will respond to labeling in brand new settings, such as supermarkets, movie theaters along with also also convenience stores. These are places which have never had labeling before,” Block said, however those places will have to label under the existing law.

“Calorie labeling will not change things overnight, along with also also the item won’t alter the American diet just by itself,” he said. “however the item’s a valuable tool to help consumers along with also also retailers make healthier choices for their families.”

Bill heads to Senate

This kind of isn’t initially nutrition-related legislation has been put either on the chopping block or up for amendment since President Donald Trump has taken office.

Last year, the Trump administration scaled back school meal nutritional requirements which were set under the Obama administration in 2012.

Some of the modifications made to the school lunch guidelines included exemptions to schools experiencing challenges in meeting the standard for providing 100% whole-grain-rich foods along with also also allowing schools to serve 1% flavored milk instead of fat-free flavored milk.

USDA shifts Obama-era school lunch guidelines

Trade associations representing supermarkets, pizza companies along with also also convenience stores are applauding the House passage of the Common Sense Nutrition Disclosure Act.

“Independent supermarket operators are committed to providing their customers with accurate nutritional information, however need the flexibility to implement the rule across a multitude of store formats, all of which operate much differently than a chain restaurant,” Peter Larkin, president along with also also CEO of the National Grocers Association, said in a statement Tuesday.
In a separate statement, the American Pizza Community also showed support for the brand new menu-labeling legislation.
Lyle Beckwith, senior vice president of government relations at NACS, which represents the US convenience store industry, said in a separate statement, “The US House of Representatives has reached a critical milestone toward the shared goals of providing consumers the information they need to make wise nutritional choices — without burdening them with higher prices along with also also reduced choices.”

The statement added, “With the May 7 compliance deadline looming for regulations promulgated by the FDA, we today urge the US Senate to expeditiously take along with also also enact This kind of legislation.”

today, nearly a decade after President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law, the Common Sense Nutrition Disclosure Act will be on its way to a Senate vote.

“This kind of will be eight years after the law originally passed. Eight years! the item’s been delayed many times, including most recently a few days before expected implementation in May 2017. So these industries are moving quickly to contain the item passed before May of This kind of year,” Block said.

Whatever happens inside the coming months, he said, consumers want calorie information.

A survey of 1,319 nationally representative adults inside the United States in fall 2012 found which 65% supported calorie labeling on sugar-sweetened beverages. The survey was published inside the journal Preventive Medicine in 2014.
“Currently, without This kind of information, consumers underestimate calories in food. Often by a lot,” he said. “along with also also, despite some industries reporting which they need more time or flexibility, most food retailers have already implemented labeling.”

House passes scale-back of menu labeling rules

Related Posts

About The Author

Add Comment