Three trade associations, the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) and the National Restaurant Association (NRA) are joining together in an effort to stop the New York City Health Department from enforcing new nutritional labelling regulations.
These regulations scheduled to go in effect in August will require stores with 15 locations or more nationwide, to publish calorie counts and other nutritional information as well as post a statement about daily recommended calorie consumption.
The three trade associations have filed a lawsuit arguing that the city is attempting to circumvent federal regulations that would prevent just such local regulations, and that are scheduled to go into effect next year. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rules would apply only to chains with 20 or more restaurants in the same brand, and will require only that they make the nutritional information accessible.
“New York City can’t jump the gun and start imposing fines when FDA hasn’t even figured out how disclosures should be made,” said Lyle Beckwith, senior vice president of government relations for NACS. “Doing that holds stores to standards that no one can meet and undermines the point of having a federal law in the first place.”
Ontario has recently introduced similar regulations that require calorie counts for each and every item – and for the most part, has received positive reviews from consumers who have information to make better choices. Time will tell if consumers make better choices and these choices will be help shape the offer to increasing sales – by delivering what they want!