San Francisco officials could decide Tuesday on banning toys in McDonald's Happy Meals and other kids food unless the meals meet certain nutritional guidelines.
The proposal, now listed on the city's Board of Supervisors agenda, has drawn sharp comments from opposition, including fast food giant McDonald's. San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom has vowed to veto the measure if it passes.
The lawmakers hope to use the ban as a way to curb childhood obesity by targeting the very thing that makes the kids want the meals -- the toy that's usually tied to a popular movie or pop culture icon. The proposal itself points to statistics from the Federal Trade Commission that in 2006, fast food chains sold more than 1.2 billion meals with toys to children under age 12. Toys like those in Happy Meals aren't the only items the proposal would ban -- also included are games, trading cards and other items. To be able to offer a toy or other incentive with a child's meal, a restaurant will have to make sure the meal contains a limited amount of calories, salt, sugar and fat and provides fruits and vegetables, among other rules.
If passed, the proposal would be the second such ban in California -- Santa Clara County signed into law a similar ban in the spring. The San Francisco meeting will be broadcast live starting at 2 p.m. Tuesday and then will be archived.
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