DENVER (CBS4) – Like it or not, calorie counts are coming to restaurant menus, convenience store sandwiches and more as the Food and Drug Administration announced new calorie labeling rules on Tuesday.
Consumers can run but can no longer hide from the truth about calories. They will soon be posted on many of favorite food items in restaurants and grocery stores — even movie theater popcorn.
The FDA issued new regulations that require chain restaurants, movie theaters and pizza joints to post calorie counts. That includes alcoholic drinks.
Some states and cities have passed their own mandates on calorie labeling, but chain restaurants complained that the piecemeal approach was expensive.
“We’ve been advocating that there would be a federal law put in place so that from coast-to-coast it would be uniform across the nation,” registered dietician Joy Dubost, PhD, with the National Restaurant Association said.
The FDA says the move will help people make healthier choices.
“People are concerned about their health and want to engage in behaviors to improve their health and prevent disease,” Dr. Margaret Hamburg with the FDA said.
Diners in Denver agree.
“With the obesity in the country I think that’s something we need to address,” a restaurant patron said.
“You need to know what’s going into your stomach, what’s going into your body,” another said.
The new rules also cover vending machines, amusement parks and prepared foods at grocery and convenience stores.
Restaurants and others have until November 2015 to comply with the new regulations. Vending machine operators have two years.