June 24, 2018

CSPI Applauds Legislation to Protect Kids from Junk Food Ads

The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) is applauding legislation proposed in New York City to protect children from junk food marketing. Toys in fast food meals and other giveaways exploit children and tempt them into unhealthy food choices, according to that agency.

Soda popNew York City Councilmember Ben Kallos’ legislation sets nutrition standards for meals that use toys and other incentives to tempt children. Fast food is marketed to children and teenagers more than any other food category. Corporations spend more than $700 million every year on marketing these products to children. And incentive items¬†make up almost half of those promotions.¬†Incentive items include toys, games, trading cards, admission tickets and other consumer products.

The law would force restaurants to meet nutrition standards on all items that are paired with incentive items. The standards are: the meals have to be less than 500 calories, with less than 600 mg of sodium, less than 35% of total calories from fat except for fat in seeds and nuts, less than 10% of total calories form saturated fats, less than 10% of total calories from added sugars, and with one half cup of fruits or vegetables or whole grains.

Standards will be set for individual items too. They are: the item should be less than 200 calories, with less than 200 mg of sodium, less than 35% of total calories from fat, less than 10% of total calories from saturated fats, less than 10% of total calories from added sweeteners, and with one cup of fruits, vegetables, or whole grains.

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