Food

Everything You Need To Know About NYC’s Soda Ban Saga So Far

It was just overturned by a state supreme court judge. Get your facts straight before you inevitably get in a fight about it at a dinner party.

Today a NY State Supreme Court judge overturned NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposed limit on selling large, sugary sodas.

The judge’s name is MILTON TINGLING, in case you were wondering.

NYC plans to appeal the state judge’s decision as soon as possible.

According to a statement today from the NYC Law Department.

Here is everything you need to know about this news story so you can effectively and inevitably argue with your friends about it.

1. In May 2012, Bloomberg proposed a 16-oz limit on the size of sugary beverages sold in food service establishments in an effort to curb obesity.

Chang W. Lee/The New York Times/__username__

The department of health calls it a “portion cap” the media calls it a “soda ban.” No other cities have anything like this.

2. In July soda companies formed a grassroots organization to campaign against the ban.

Eric Michael Johnson/The New York Times/__username__

It is called New Yorkers for Beverage Choices and the group canvassed neighborhoods to gather signatures on petitions.

3. In September 2012 the proposal was approved by the NYC Board of Health.

Fun-looking group, eh? The city’s commissioner of health heads the board and is in support of the rule. All of the board’s members are appointment by mayor Bloomberg.

4. The regulation WAS set to go into effect tomorrow, March 12.

5. So what’s this all about? The rules are a little confusing.

6. The basics:

Diet sodas are ok to be sold in cups larger than 16oz.

7. What would all that mean? It would mean no more two-liter sodas with delivery.

8. And if a restaurant had a self-service soda fountain, they couldn’t give you a cup larger than 16 ounces.

9. And, crazily enough, no more unlimited mixers with bottle service at clubs.

Alberto E. Rodriguez/__username__

10. Huge milkshakes WOULD BE allowed.

Drinks that are more than half milk or milk substitute are ok, likely because dairy has other nutritional benefits. And thank GOD because it’s Shamrock Shake season.

11. And Big Gulps and Slurpees would also be allowed — but for a different reason.

Bloomberg’s rule couldn’t affect grocery stores or convenience stores — including 7-11 — because they are regulated by the state and not the city.

12. The “specialized coffee drinks” situation is particularly complicated.

13. Starbucks had planned no changes.

Their spokesperson to the NYTimes that it wasn’t clear which of their drinks would be regulated. Because even though some of them clearly contain more than the 3.125 grams of sugar per ounce that Bloomberg’s rule prohibits, it’s unclear how much milk is in them and if they hit that 51% mark.

14. Dunkin Donuts already had signs in their stores explaining the change.

15. Some saw it as an intrusion on personal liberties.

16. Some just thought it was a stupid idea that wouldn’t work.

17. Others explained why it probably would work.

This article from the New Yorker points out that what people “want” is really just based on what options they are given, and giving them only smaller options will reduce intake.

18. The whole thing has turned into a little bit of a joke.

19. But almost everyone agrees that America’s increasing soda habit is tied to numerous health problems including obestity.

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