New York mayor moves to ban sugary drinks, California cracks down on foie gras

Sweet and savory foods and drinks are under siege across the country

And cue the Anthony Bourdain rant … now. As he likely would say, “the battle between the forces of good and evil” currently is being waged on two fronts, with billionaire New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg launching a salvo at the beverage industry and the state of California just a month shy of its impending ban on foie gras. The troops have been marshaled, and the fervor on both sides is palpable.

So what’s the deal?

“The New York City Health Department’s unhealthy obsession with attacking soft drinks is again pushing them over the top,” a spokesman for the New York City Beverage Association said in a statement yesterday, according to the Times. “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.”

Further vitriol came from New Yorker Jeff Stier, a senior fellow at the non-profit think tank National Center for Public Policy Research who also railed against Manhattan’s attempt to ban “pink slime” back in April.

While California is set to be the first state to ban the controversial offal, other U.S. cities already have dealt with the issue.

In January 2008, the San Diego City Council unanimously passed a resolution that "commends the Animal Protection and Rescue League (APRL) for raising awareness of the cruel practice of force-feeding ducks and geese to produce foie gras, commends the many San Diego restaurants that have stopped selling foie gras before the California statewide ban goes into effect, and encourages San Diegans to avoid supporting this extreme form of animal cruelty."

Join the Conversation

Advertisement. Closing in 15 seconds.