May 31st, 2012
07:35 AM ET

New York mayor wants big sugary drinks banned

If New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has his way, you won't be gulping down any 44-ounce Cokes at any of the Big Apple's eateries after March 2013.

Citing what he says is the contribution sugary beverages make to obesity in the U.S., Bloomberg says the buck, and the big Dr. Pepper, stops with him.

“Obesity is a nationwide problem, and all over the United States, public health officials are wringing their hands saying, ‘Oh, this is terrible.’ New York City is not about wringing your hands; it’s about doing something. I think that’s what the public wants the mayor to do,” Bloomberg told The New York Times.

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His proposal would ban any the sale of any sugary beverage over 16 ounces in any of the city's restaurants, delis, movie theaters or even street carts, according to reports from New York.

Sales of sweetened drinks larger than 16 ounces would still be permitted in supermarkets and convenience stores, according to the reports, including one from CNN affiliate NY1.

Bloomberg's ban would not apply to diet drinks, juices, milkshakes or alcohol, according to the NY1 report.

The New York City Beverage Association responded quickly Wednesday.

“There they go again. The New York City Health Department’s unhealthy obsession with attacking soft drinks is again pushing them over the top. The city is not going to address the obesity issue by attacking soda because soda is not driving the obesity rates. It’s time for serious health professionals to move on and seek solutions that are going to actually curb obesity,” the group said in a statement, according to NY1.

According to the Times report, more than half of New York's adults are obese or overweight, and the city says more than 30% of its citizens drink at least one sweetened beverage daily.

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James Estrada, a 41-year-old truck driver from Queens, New York told the New York Post that it doesn't make sense to just ban large sizes for everyone.

“I’m 6-2, 230 pounds so . . . serving sizes don’t really apply to me,” Estrada told the Post. “I just know that’s not enough for me. I usually get a large because it’s a good deal and I take long trips. I don’t want to stop every hour for another drink.”

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If Bloomberg's plan goes through, there's still a way to drown yourself in Pepsi. The Times says while fast-food restaurants could only give out cups holding 16 ounces or less, free refills are allowed. So just plan for more trips to the soda bar.

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Filed under: Fast Food • Food • New York
soundoff (1,059 Responses)
  1. Yoky

    I have a brilliant idea ...how bout we stop cutting funds to sports and extra activities so kids will get excersize instead of banning these drinks. Fat people are 1 of 2 things Heridity or laziness... Lets get people outside, lets get kids outside, lets have people take responsibility for their own and their lack of excesize . I am tired of politicians trying to tell me how to live. I'm a junk food junkie but i also played tons of sports in school and still excersize to this day and i'm fit and in good health. So the Bloomberg you are an idiot how bout you start blaming the people that needs to be blamed and stop telling me what i can and can not drink / eat.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
    • RDS35

      I have a brilliant idea ... how about you pay for it.

      May 31, 2012 at 8:24 am | Report abuse |
    • conradshull

      True true true. There is one demographic of young people who LOVE fast food, sugary drinks and lots of it – skaters. You almost never see fat skaters.

      May 31, 2012 at 8:27 am | Report abuse |
    • Are you serious?!

      Only suggestion I have is instead of banning, add a small tax instead and take all the money from that tax and make sure it directly goes to both youth and adult sports programs.

      May 31, 2012 at 8:38 am | Report abuse |
    • Erik

      Democrats never are about personal responsibility. They are about total and absolute control. Look at there list of bills over the last 20 years. Many of them are very serious about limiting your rights. They are far worse than the Republicrats. But the Republicrats have there fair share of trying to take away our rights as well. Thank you Patriot Act & Thank you Obama care ( soon to be destroyed by the Supreme Court ). Yeah courts ! Boooo Politicians trying to buy votes !

      May 31, 2012 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
  2. JKR79

    I consider myself pretty liberal about most things, but the mayors of many American cities are taking things too far. Smoking inside is understandable, but this is gettting absolutely ridiculous. These are individual choices and freedoms that are being taken away from us one by one. Where does it stop?

    That 64 ounce soda is bad for you. You should be an adult enough to make that decision for yourself. Unlike smoking though, it has NO immediate effect on others around you. Tackle the obesity epidemic through education and however else you want. Don't tell people they can't do what they want to though.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:20 am | Report abuse |
    • mike

      What about the increased health care costs associated with obesity? We all pay for it. That lard ass with the 64 ouncer has no self control or does not care because this is a "free" country. Well no it is not. It is a Democracy....and we all pay for the lack of self control. Buy several 16oz sodas if you want......but don't be tempted by the gross 64 oz classless soda.

      May 31, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
  3. Charvel

    Next thing they go after is candy bars... you can only buy bite-size. Then ice cream... can only buy 4 oz. Then your TV size... can't have over a 42" because nobody needs anything bigger. Then your car... don't need a big SUV. Everyone should have a Smart Car.

    Government is getting their nose into too much. Glad I don't live in NY!!!

    May 31, 2012 at 8:20 am | Report abuse |
    • nyc_edge

      we're glad you don't live here!!!

      May 31, 2012 at 8:28 am | Report abuse |
  4. EarlGrayHot

    While these drinks are part of the problem it is NOT up to the maypor of New York to keep you from having one. Adults should be allpowed to purchase what they want.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:21 am | Report abuse |
  5. Freedom Finder

    Communist countries don’t become communist over night what they do is slowly take away until you have nothing BUT what they want you to have. This has to stop, I have seen this happening again and again so much for freedom. What next you can’t eat White bread because it’s bad for you only wheat bread and it will spiral, really

    May 31, 2012 at 8:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Observer

      I disagree. Communist countries typically become authoritarian promptly after the communists seize power, which historically has happened relatively quickly, by force of arms. These things typically happen more slowly in democracies, where basic freedoms are chipped away incrementally. The Nanny State is real. New York and San Francisco are the two primary examples. And, there's no end to it. If your political masters can ban sales of sodas over 16 oz, or the sale of goldfish (S.F.), then they can limit the size of candy bars, the size of entrees in restaurants, the number of cookies sold in convenience stores, etc. Eventually, it moves from limits to directives: you must exercise every day at work, followed by what exercises shall be performed; you shall eat these foods, which must contain these ingredients, prepared in this way. The possibilities for benevolent oversight over peoples' daily lives are endless. But cheer up-it will all be for your own good!

      May 31, 2012 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
  6. Drew

    How about you we ban people from serving more than 2 terms in office as New York Mayor – but this time make it so that the Mayor cannot change that law when they are in office.

    Tired of listening to this guy

    May 31, 2012 at 8:24 am | Report abuse |
    • Debra

      Drew, you are so right....Bloomberg is the thief of the job of NYC Mayor by changing the law and sneaking through a 3rd term. He went against the vote of the citizens of NYC who didn't want a 3rd term and turned it around to suit him. He didn't want Guiliani to have a 3rd term in NYC's hour of need after Sept 11th. Bloomberg fought it tooth and nail, but NOOOO, he said it wouldn't be right to serve a 3rd term until he was at the end of his 2nd term. Wonder what he will try to get away with and what law he will try to change so that he can do a 4th term. Mark my words, this little Napolean will try his hardest to do it again and again and again. His intentions are to make the citizens of NYC zombies. He's arrogant, obnoxious and a buffoon.

      May 31, 2012 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
  7. conradshull

    Time for that megalomaniacal piece of s*** to go!!!!!

    May 31, 2012 at 8:25 am | Report abuse |
  8. Bob B

    The people need to ban Bloomberg!

    May 31, 2012 at 8:26 am | Report abuse |
    • Erik

      See the 3 people above my post get it. They know the difference between needed regulation and the need to get rid of nut cases in office. Its nice to see people of reason. Rather than the handout crowd clambering for more government control over there non existant lives.

      May 31, 2012 at 9:54 am | Report abuse |
  9. SPAG. MONSTER

    but no control over cigs & booze

    May 31, 2012 at 8:27 am | Report abuse |
  10. Norman

    How did Bloomberg, a complete idiot, grow to be so wealthy?

    May 31, 2012 at 8:28 am | Report abuse |
    • Erik

      Havent you ever noticed that stupid people that couldnt do anything else become wealthy ? Its Gods way of taking care of the idiots in this world. He expects us hard working folks to just ignore people like that because they live in fantasy land.

      May 31, 2012 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
  11. Johnny Genius

    Going all the way down to 16 oz is too extreme. However, banning massive drink sizes (I.E. 44 oz) is not a bad idea. Drinking one of those with your fast food lunch most certainly contributes to the obesity epidemic in this country.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:29 am | Report abuse |
    • Erik

      Hi Johnny,

      What other choices should they remove from your life and everyone else's to make you happy ? Hey I know why dont we start with your ability to speak. After all you might inadvertently say something some day that offends someone and hurt there feelings. This may lead to a depressed person in society. Which then may lead to a person who goes around randomly killing others as they may feel your comment shows them that no one likes them. I know you have rights n all but we Democrats feel your better off without them. There fore we are going to take away your right to speak out. Dont worry we wont abuse this and its for the better good of humanity. I hope you enjoy your new life free of decisions. As an adult you should not have to make any as we will decide for you.

      May 31, 2012 at 10:00 am | Report abuse |
  12. Golden God

    What's next? There is 47 grams of sugar in a bag of Skittles, There is 30 grams of sugar in the "Low Cal" Starbucks cappochino, 54 grams of sugar in a king size Snickers bar. Will NYC ban all those? Then what – sorry sir you can't have that 16oz NY Strip Steak – your limited to a more reasonable 8oz portion. Where is the line? This is a sign of the hope and change Obama promised. Government control of every aspect of your life.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:29 am | Report abuse |
    • Sashatree

      Bloomberg is a dyed in the wool Republican. Obama has nothing to do with this – and this has nothing to do with Obama. Are you just one of those people who have to throw the President's name into every post you leave for the sake of trying to drag him into something you're opposed to?

      May 31, 2012 at 8:38 am | Report abuse |
    • Erik

      Well unfortunately for the Elitest Democrats the courts are there to stop them. Yeaaaaaa courts ! Booo Democrats !

      May 31, 2012 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
  13. Jeff from Columbus

    Are sugary drinks bad for you – especially in excess? Absolutely.
    Should the government tell you how to take care of your body? Absolutely not.

    Its really that simple.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:29 am | Report abuse |
  14. tricia

    New Yorkers clearly have a concern for sugary drinks, and rightly so. But, to not include all soft drinks, including diet, is an endorsement of the health in faux sweeteners which given another decade is going to prove to be deadly.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:29 am | Report abuse |
  15. radiobroadcaster

    Kudos To The Mayor! Say what you want, but people do not control what they lntake for nutrition by themselves .IF THEY DID THEN NUTRI SYSTEMS WOULDNT EXIST!

    May 31, 2012 at 8:30 am | Report abuse |
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