NYC's Calorie War, Restaurants Cited

You knew this was going to be a rough transition. Fast food joints like Dunkin’ Donuts and McDonald’s have been issued warnings for their calorie-less menus. The New York Times reports:
Five restaurants had been cited, the health department said. They were Dunkin’ Donuts at 445 Park Avenue South, at East 30th Street; McDonald’s at 1560 Broadway, at West 46th Street; Popeye’s, at 321 West 125th Street, between Frederick Douglass Boulevard and St. Nicholas Avenue; Sbarro at 22 West 34th Street, next to the Empire State Building; and TGI Friday’s at 677 Lexington Avenue, at East 56th Street.

But the citations were little more than warnings. They carried no fines, because a federal judge had said the city could not impose fines until mid-July.

And failing to post calorie counts will not affect whether a restaurant passes or fails its regular food safety inspection, even after the fines begin. The calorie-count violation is separate from the things inspectors always look for: whether food is cooked or stored at the right temperature, whether the ice maker is clean, whether workers are wearing hats or hair nets, for example.

Still, the form that inspectors issued to the restaurants that did not have calorie counts posted sounded serious. It said the health department “expects that the conditions will be addressed promptly.” The form cautioned that “any recurrence of these conditions could result in further action being taken.”
For more on NYC's calories-on-menus law, check out: New York Calorie-Count--NOW
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wellsphere - May 7, 2008 5:16 PM

I think it's a great idea restaurants are being asked to post info. It's amazing how hard restaurant chains are fighting to hide their nutrition information. It's hard to eat well when eating out, especially when you have dietary needs or want to watch your calorie intake. Often food items that seem healthy and are marketed that way are not. For this reason, Wellsphere just launched a new service called Wellternatives that lets people find nutrition info for thousands of chain restaurants — right from their cell phone or on the web. It also makes recommendations for a healthier alternative to your favorite restaurant meals, hence the name.

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