Calories will soon be on the menu

John Dimsdale Mar 24, 2010
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Calories will soon be on the menu

John Dimsdale Mar 24, 2010
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Bill Radke: One emphasis of the overall health care law is preventive care, and that extends to the restaurant industry. By next year, more than 200,000 fast food and chain restaurants will have to disclose calorie counts and nutritional information on their menus. Marketplace’s John Dimsdale reports from Washington.


John Dimsdale: The idea is that by letting restaurant customers compare calories, they’ll order healthier food.

Margo Wootan at the Center for Science in the Public Interest says right now, eating out involves a lot of guess work.

Margo Wootan: People look at the menu and think the tuna sandwich is better than the roast beef, when in fact it has 50 percent more calories.

After more than a dozen states and cities passed their own restaurant labeling laws, the industry came around to supporting a national standard.

Sue Hensley is with the National Restaurant Association:

Sue Hensley: There was this growing patchwork of legislation and regulation. Most of those provisions did not include as much information as this bill will now require.

It also calls for a national strategy for illness prevention, as well as the creation of a National Preventive Care Council. To encourage healthier babies, the law requires employers to give working mothers time and a place to pump breast milk for their babies.

In Washington, I’m John Dimsdale for Marketplace.

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