3/4/14 The web site for the Illinois Coalition Against Beverage Taxes is up and running!
From Tim Bramlet ***IMPORTANT***
The web site for the Illinois Coalition Against Beverage Taxes is up and running!
With it, your members and employees can very easily access their legislators and send them a message to oppose the proposed beverage tax. All they have to do is click on the link and provide some limited information to become a “member” of the coalition.
We want to flood the General Assembly starting this week with messages from your constituents in opposition to the tax. Let’s stop this thing before it gets any momentum. I have attached a brief fact sheet which you can use, discard or modify as you see fit. The main focus is to get the link to the web site and facebook page out there so legislators hear about the overwhelming opposition to the tax…and the sooner the better.
We should know by early next week if the bill will be headed to a Senate committee, and which committee. We are targeting members of three committees to make sure we have the “No” votes to stop the tax there, and I may be contacting you to talk to some of those members later today.
Thanks for your continued help in this. And please call if you have any questions.
Illinois Beverage Association and Illinois Coalition Against Beverage Taxes
Oppose Senate Bill 3524 (Sen. Mattie Hunter, D-Chicago)
House Bill 5690 (Rep. Robyn Gabel, D-Evanston)
Would place a new unfair tax on the purchase of soda and other beverages
Two Illinois lawmakers have proposed imposing a tax of a penny per ounce on all sugar-sweetened beverages sold in Illinois.
Your customers would be forced to pay $1.44 more for a 12-pack of soda and up to 50 percent more for a two-liter bottle!
According to the USDA, all sugar-sweetened beverages account for only a small portion (6 percent) of calories in the average diet. Yet these lawmakers think this new tax will “end obesity.”
If we want to get serious about obesity, it starts with education – not laws and regulation.
This tax would jeopardize many good-paying jobs in the beverage industry and thousands more in retail stores and restaurants throughout our state.
Politicians should focus on what matters most – education, jobs and the economy – and let us run our own businesses.
Tell your representative and senator to do their job and leave the grocery shopping to us!
There are two things you can do to help us right away:
- like us on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/NoIllinoisBeverageTax
- sign the petition and send an email to your legislator at: www.NoILBeverageTax.com
3/4/14 From the Federal Register – Note that vending is mentioned twice in this document, here are the clips that pertain:
Volume 79, Number 41 (Monday, March 3, 2014) Part III
Health and Human Services Department, Food and Drug Administration, 11990–12029 [2014–04385]
1st) The ANPRM invited comment on whether we should begin rulemaking to require packages that can reasonably be consumed at one-eating occasion to provide the nutrition information for the entire package (70 FR 17010 at 17013).
Most comments indicated that we need to address the labeling of packages that appear to be single-serving packages, but are actually labeled as containing multiple servings, which they considered to be “fraudulent” and “deceitful.” Many comments stated that manufacturers should not be allowed to list multiple servings for items that an average person would consume at one-eating occasion. Examples of such items consumed at one-eating occasion that commenters thought to be misleading included 16 and 20 oz bottles of carbonated beverages, canned soup, snack size packages of potato chips, corn chips and pretzels, individual packs and cans of fruit juice, microwave popcorn, canned chili and ravioli, packages of shelled nuts, iced tea, frozen entrees and meals, energy drinks, 5-inch pizzas, dairy beverages, pre-packaged lunches, vending machine items, pre-packed breakfast cereals, cookies, and crackers. Many comments also objected to the use of fractional portions when declaring the numbers of servings for these products (i.e., 2.5 servings) and noted that we should require nutrition labeling for the entire package for products that could reasonably be consumed at one-eating occasion. One comment understood the listed serving sizes to be recommendations, rather than amounts customarily consumed, and stated that serving sizes such as a single sandwich divided into 2 servings, a single muffin divided into 3 servings, or a single bag of chips sold as a side to sandwiches divided into 2 servings were very confusing and unrealistic.
We agree, in part, with comments that opposed individually packaged foods that appeared to be single-serving containers, but which declared two or more servings on their package labels. We agree that these types of packaged foods can be confusing to consumers; however, we do not agree that all of these products should be labeled as a single serving. As discussed in detail below, these types of products should provide nutrition information for the whole package, as the only column of nutrition information for some products, or with dual-column labeling for other products, which would provide nutrition information per serving and per container or per unit, as applicable. As discussed in section II.C.1.a., scientific evidence has shown that some consumers may tend to experience a “unit bias,” and view certain sizes of intact units/packages of food as a marker of the appropriate amount of food to consume, and thus consumers should be provided with nutrition information for the amount of calories and nutrients that they might reasonably consume in an individual package or unit (Refs. 25, 26, 30, and 33).
2nd) 4. Products of Concern Listed in Consumer Comments–Agency Request for Information
The majority of consumer comments on the ANPRM stated that the food labels on the following foods are misleading and recommended that the serving size be increased: 20 fluid oz bottles of carbonated beverages, canned soup, snack size packages of potato chips and pretzels (e.g., salty snacks), fruit juice, microwave popcorn, canned chili, shelled nuts, iced tea, TV dinners, energy drinks, canned ravioli, 5-inch pizzas, dairy beverages, pre-packaged lunches, vending machine items, breakfast cereals, macaroni and cheese, cookies, crackers, ice cream, coffee creamer and muffins. Most of these foods did not have a change in consumption of at least 25 percent, which is a factor we consider in this rule to update the RACC. Although the proposed rule would not change the RACC for most of these products, we feel that the comments’ concerns have been addressed with the proposed definition of single- serving containers and the proposed requirements for dual-column labeling. The proposed requirements would allow for products that contain less than 200 percent of the RACC to be labeled as a single- serving container and for products that contain 200 percent and up to and including 400 percent of the RACC to be labeled with dual-column labeling that would provide nutrition information per serving and per container in the Nutrition Facts label. The majority of the products of concern listed above would meet either of the proposed requirements for single-serving containers or dual-column labeling.
We invite comment on whether we should change the RACC for foods in these categories due to consumer concern of misleading label information. If so, which foods should we change? What factor(s) should we use to determine when these foods should be changed? Are there any data available to support a change in the RACCs of these foods? Additionally, to the extent that some comments may be concerned about misleading package sizes when compared to labeled serving sizes, as opposed to being concerned with the appropriate serving size for specific food products within a product category, we invite comment on whether the proposed requirements for single serving and dual-column labeling alleviate the comments’ concerns.