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. Martimar

    While I don't drink much soda (without booze at least), it is my right to do so if I want. This is far too intrusive, and would make a difference anyways.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Martimar


      May 31, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
    • GreginGolden

      Thank goodness I can still buy my 40 oz malt liquor in NYC. I mean, it must be healthy, right? Because the government is not intervening there.

      May 31, 2012 at 8:56 am | Report abuse |
  2. lolol

    aspartame drinks are 100 times more dangerous than regular ones

    May 31, 2012 at 8:45 am | Report abuse |
  3. Rob

    And one person should not be able to walk out with a dozen donuts... or a Large Pizza too! Ban that stuff!!!

    May 31, 2012 at 8:45 am | Report abuse |
  4. Tee

    Let us outlaw greasy fried chicken. Oh no Obama and Holder wouldn't like that.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
  5. Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©™

    Government has no business telling citizens how much sugar they can consume.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
  6. Boo

    Bloomberg is an elitist fascist.. A few years ago after the smoking ban was passed in NYC, there was a club in NYCwhere wealthy and "society" people socialize and they were allowed to smoke in their club. When asked about this, Bloomberg said "I can't tell these people what to do...." As a NYer, I cannot wait for his THIRD term (he also got the law changed limiting mayoral terms to two – which he was allegedly in favor of – , so he could run again) – this tells you what a fascist and lying hypocrite he is.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
  7. AleKaida CanhaveuNY

    Hey Mayor Bloomberg... Can you tell me what this "public" wants you to do? Guess how many fingers I'm holding up? Release Jared Loughner, it is YOU that needs to be locked up in a mental hospital! Want to know where the true terror ists are? Just head over to City Hall. I have never visited New York, and sadly, never intend to with the idjits the voters of NY put into office!

    May 31, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
  8. Samuel R. Preston, III

    NY is the biggest nanny state in the Union. I live here and my family has been here for generations; it's a beautiful state with a lot to offer - but unfortunately we are planning on moving out soon. Between the taxes and this sort of mind-control mentality, it is really starting to suck. I don't really care about the soft-drink issue - but it's just another symptom of a bigger issue.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
  9. Martimar

    Purhaps it is better that we all be given schedules that details our workout schedule, eating habits, and risk assessment of activities. You know, to get rid of that pesky free will that so often gets us in trouble.

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

    So is the 'ole cowboy going to have his "NYPD Blues" waste their time arresting anyone seen wielding a deadly can of Coke on his city streets?

    May 31, 2012 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
  11. Just Me

    I am 48...5'8" and weigh a grand total of 108 pounds. And I drink sweet tea nearly all day. I do drink just water daily...but tea is my drink of choice. I did weigh 135 last November which is close to what my weight should be with my height. For whatever reason, I suddenly did the major weight drop. Still drinking tea at the time. Sugar alone is not the problem. It is part of a much bigger one such as fast foods, and the additives and "fake" food that we now have to eat. I wish the sugar was the culprit. If it were, I'd get my weight back up. Skinny people are dogged with health problems too. Someone should look into that one.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:48 am | Report abuse |
  12. pjc722

    I think as a society is tremendous that we show SOOOOOO MUCH concern for the dietary intake of so many WHO the last time I checked have free thought and FREE WILL to choose what they want and HOW MUCH OF IT that they want.

    It is not the place of government to tell us what to drink or what not to drink OR HOW MUCH OF IT. All the concerns that the government or EMPEROR BLOOMBERG is putting forth should be undertaken by the individual and not the state. If I chose to eat a 1 pound hamburger with cheese and bacon on a fried donut roll, than that is my decision.

    Government needs to stop overstepping their boundaries and to look at how every small step in this BANNING direction brings us ever closer to a society that looks like old RUSSIA or present day China.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:48 am | Report abuse |
  13. rob

    banning products wont fix the mentality of people in this country to go for the other options to drink. that is where the issue of obesity is least addressed. why is that Americans feel the need to get the fatty foods and sugar drinks. what is depressing people enough to want food as a comfort.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:48 am | Report abuse |
  14. Sagebrush Shorty

    Big Brother knows best. Bloomberg is the typical know-it-all who thinks the "little people" need his guidance. He hates guns but his bodyguards are armed to the teeth. Liberals are all alike.

    May 31, 2012 at 8:49 am | Report abuse |
  15. why?

    I am not understanding what is happening to us as a country! Really now everything has to be calibrated and controlled? who's business is it to tell anyone what to eat or how much to weigh? If you are overweight and don't care and happy so be it.
    Plus imaginge what other cultures must think about us, mayors telling us what to drink how much to drink and how to fry our foods?

    May 31, 2012 at 8:49 am | Report abuse |
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