October 2009 Issue

Calorie Counts at Restaurants May be Sweeping the Nation

New York City was the first U.S. city to put stock in the notion that calorie information in clear view of customers at restaurants might make them think twice before ordering the 1,500-calorie combo meal. As a result, a mandatory menu-labeling law was passed in 2007 requiring New York City chains with at least 15 units to post calorie information. California soon joined the menu-labeling bandwagon, becoming the first state to pass mandatory restaurant menu-labeling in chains. Since then, restaurant menu-labeling laws have swept the nation as counties, cities and states have considered adopting such measures. Recently, the restaurant menu-labeling campaign reached its crescendo when national legislation was introduced, supported by the National Restaurant Association and many health organizations, to require calories (and additional nutrition information upon request) to be listed on menus.

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