An attorney for New York City has asked the state's top court to revive a ban on large sugary drinks, saying the city's health department has the power to ban any products that pose a health risk.
Lower courts have overturned the ban, which would prohibit some businesses from selling sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces, because it was adopted by the health department and not the elected City Council.
This week the city got its final chance to have the ban reinstated at the Court of Appeals in Albany.
“What if a study said hamburgers are bad and there’s not one good thing about them?” he asked. “You can ban the triple deckers, all three patties?”
Dearing responded that the city could indeed ban hamburgers, or at least cap their size, if it had science on its side.
The court accepted about a dozen friend-of-the-court briefs in the high-profile case. The plaintiffs were backed by the NAACP and other civil rights groups, members of the New York City Council and business groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
Two groups of law professors and a coalition representing health officials from cities across the country were among those who supported the city.
The soda ban was based on studies that show sugary drinks to be a leading driver of obesity.
The case is New York Statewide Coalition of Hispanic Chambers of Commerce v. New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, New York State Court of Appeals No. 134.
All research on this web site is the property of Leslie Beck Nutrition Consulting Inc. and is protected by copyright. Keep in mind that research on these matters continues daily and is subject to change. The information presented is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. It is intended to provide ongoing support of your healthy lifestyle practices.