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Berkeley becomes 1st city to ban junk food at grocery store checkouts

Berkeley becomes 1st city to ban junk food at grocery store checkouts


CNAP ClipBoard: I don’t see what difference it makes whether candy is sold in the aisle at checkout or three feet away on an end cap. Personally I think the government is getting up too close in the face of store owners, telling them where they can place the items they’re selling. I mean, where do we live? Is this America?

If a product is legal and people are allowed by law to sell it, then that should be the end of the discussion. City councils across the nation are not going to combat obesity by legislating where store owners can place their sweet and salty treats for sale. They’re not healthcare professionals, they’re politicians. Under whose advice are they passing these discriminatory laws?

People will find their treats. Making them look for them isn’t going to magically make everybody thin. Stop micromanaging people’s behaviors through manipulative legislation that is meaningless.

As a result, they’ll have to hire people to do studies that cost a bundle of cash that could be put to better use, only to discover the ban on treats at checkouts had no bearing on obesity or high blood sugar and diabetes.

One of the reasons candy was eventually relegated to the checkout aisles years ago was to discourage theft, mostly by kids, and mostly in the summer months when they were out of school.

Eating healthy starts in the home and then spreads to the greater society. Lawmakers are putting the cart before the horse by legislating how you’re going to raise your kids by forcing your buying habits and controlling the availability of the foods they deem to be unhealthy in order to fit their social engineering plans. I’m suspecting these laws stem from health insurance companies wanting people to eat better to stay healthy, to cut healthcare costs.

If that’s what they really want, and not just appeasement during election years to make it look like the politicians you elect are looking out for the health of your families, then fight to get the dead animals out of the stores and off the plates.

If you want to socially and morally engineer something of value, then stop the Holocaust, and make everybody healthier and more conscious of who they eat, instead of whether they add salt or sugar to disguise the flesh and blood in the products they consume.


Berkeley becomes 1st city to ban junk food at grocery store checkouts

Ronnie Koenig  9/27/2020

Residents in Berkeley, California are going to see a big change when they go grocery shopping next year.

Beginning in March 2021, candy, chips, soda and other junk food items will not be available for purchase at store checkouts. The Berkeley City Council passed an ordinance on Sept. 22 that will ban these products from the aisles right by store registers.

Often referred to as impulse buys, the snacks and treats will be replaced with healthier options in retailers that occupy spaces that are each larger than 2,500 square feet. This applies to grocery stores like Safeway, Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, Monterey Market and the popular Berkeley Bowl.

The Berkeley Bowl already emphasizes bountiful fruits and vegetables on their store’s Instagram.

The Healthy Checkout Ordinance, which is the first of its kind in the U.S., will ban food items with five or more grams of added sugars and 200 milligrams or more of sodium, chewing gum and mints with added sugars and beverages with added sugars or artificial sweeteners. The ordinance passed unanimously at the Council’s meeting and was sponsored by Council members Kate Harrison and Sophie Hahn.

While the ordinance will only apply to 25 stores in the city, that also includes drugstore chains like CVS and Walgreens. Under the new policy, customers will still be able to buy the sweet and salty treats they desire — they’ll just need to go looking for them throughout the store, versus picking them up as they’re checking out. Corner stores and small delis will not be held to the ordinance, which goes into effect March 1, 2021 and will be actively enforced by health inspectors starting January 1, 2022.

So while you might be used to tossing a candy bar into your cart as you checkout at the register, at least at the Berkeley Trader Joe’s, you’ll have to go looking for that chocolate fix at another store aisle instead. Candies like their organic almond beverage chocolate bar, have 10 grams of added sugars and doesn’t qualify as a food item that can be displayed at checkout areas.

Some of the food items that are allowed at checkout areas under the ordinance include drinks with no added sugars like LaCroix sparkling waters and Pure Leaf unsweetened black tea and snacks with no more than 5 grams of added sugars like Sabra hummus and Smartfood white cheddar popcorn.

According to Berkeleyside, Ayanna Davis, director of programs at Healthy Black Families, spoke during the public comment period of the council’s meeting and said that as a mother of seven, she is accustomed to dealing with what she calls “predator marketing” at checkout counters in stores. Davis believes this type of marketing targets communities of color and cited a city equity report on disproportionately high rates of diabetes and heart disease in Berkeley’s Black community.

Not all Berkeley residents agreed with the new policy. NBC’s Bay Area affiliate KNTV reported that at least some people thought the city should focus on more pressing concerns than what people put in their mouths.

“I’m a diabetic Type 2,” A.J. Curtis told KNTV. But he says other issues, like Berkeley’s homeless crisis, are more important than what people are buying. “I feel like they should be focusing more on that than on the food we eat,” he said.


Source: Berkeley becomes 1st city to ban junk food at grocery store checkouts







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