PepsiCo (NYSE:PEP), Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO) and other soft-drink makers — as well as restaurants like McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD) that sell the sugary soda-pop — might be feeling somewhat annoyed with New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
The Bloomberg administration is making a stand against America’s obesity crisis by proposing a ban on the selling any cup or bottle of sugary sodas and similar drinks larger than 16 fluid ounces, The New York Times reports. If the ban occurs, New York City’s prohibition on pop could take place as early as March, 2013.
“Obesity is a nationwide problem, and all over the United States, public health officials are wringing their hands saying, ‘Oh, this is terrible,’” Bloomberg said in an interview on Wednesday in the Governor’s Room at City Hall according to the Times. “New York City is not about wringing your hands; it’s about doing something,” Bloomberg continued.
The proposal has irked the New York City Beverage Association, a branch of the soda industry’s national trade group.
“The New York City health department’s unhealthy obsession with attacking soft drinks is again pushing them over the top,” industry spokesman, Stefan Friedman told the Times. “It’s time for serious health professionals to move on and seek solutions that are going to actually curb obesity. These zealous proposals just distract from the hard work that needs to be done on this front.”
The proposed measure would affect most sodas, energy drinks and pre-sweetened iced teas sold at sports arenas, fast-food joints and other restaurants. It would not affect beverages sold in stores and does not pertain to diet sodas, fruit juices, dairy-based drinks or alcohol.