US passes fast-food nutrition labelling law

Posted by Nicole Eckersley on 23rd March 2010

As part of the health care legislation passed by the US House of Representatives on Sunday, chain restaurants with 20 or more locations will be required to provide nutritional information to diners at the point of purchase.

The information will mirror the kind available on packaged foods.  Caloric information would be highlighted on menus, menu boards and drive-through boards.

The provision has been praised by America’s National Restaurant Association.

“The passage of this provision is a win for consumers and restaurateurs,” said Dawn Sweeney, National Restaurant Association President and CEO. “We know the importance of providing consumers with the information they want and need, no matter in which part of the country they are dining. This legislation will replace a growing patchwork of varying state and local regulations with one consistent national standard that helps consumers make choices that are best for themselves and their families.”

The nutrition information provision was publicly supported by industry groups, health and consumer advocacy groups, as well as a bipartisan group of House and Senate members.  The health care legislation is expected to be signed into law by President Obama.