Monday, May 01, 2017

Menu labeling rule in limbo?

While I was taking a look at the news, I came across an article entitled: “Menu labeling rule in limbo as feds signal last-minute delay.”  The federal rule to take effect on 05 May 2017, “would make it mandatory for all restaurant, supermarket and convenience store chains to post calorie counts on their menus…” Now, just as it was about to take effect, the FDA indicated that the rule could be delayed.

So what do you think is behind the delay?  Some would say that it is a last ditch effort by certain forces to lift regulations that are burdensome to businesses, because of the additional costs associated with the production of new menus.  A counter argument would suggest that since the food industry is already producing some form of labelling, the so-called additional cost is nothing but a smokescreen.

So what are some of the benefits to such a rule?  Foremost, consumers would be in the position to see the calorie counts before buying food and would tend to order less calorie-laden options.  Also, a directive that requires the food chains to admit on paper the ingredients they put in the food they serve is a godsend.  It would allow consumers to be better informed on the chemicals/poison readily put in most foods.  Social pressure for healthier food could, potentially, lead the food conglomerates to produce healthier alternatives.  So far, this sounds pretty good, right?

What do I say?  It’s about time that such regulations are put in place!  It would force the food chains to disclose to all their customers the kind of garbage that they serve!  Therefore, it isn’t surprising that forces within the food industry are trying their best to prevent such law from coming into effect!  However, my darker side believes that such a law really won’t make much of a difference.  Why, you ask?  Because the populace is so addicted to the hollow, sugar-laden foods served at fast food joints!  The same is true for the quick-cooking/time-saving trash available at supermarkets!  The result is that most people wouldn’t/couldn’t alter their choices! 

I find it sad to admit/realize that a potentially great law would not make much of a difference.  This is a clear case of the food industry controlling the populace for such a long time that the people have become powerless.  So where should we place the blame?  To me it is simple.  Blame it on fast foods!

- B. J. T. Pepin


  1. What we need is honest labeling. There are things in our food that are disguised by using different names for the same ingredient such as MSG. Apparently there are some ingredients that have as many as 40 different names.

    1. You got it! And using chemical names to, in effect, hide what they are to consumers!