The Now


10 cities pass bill banning sugary drinks on kids menus

Baltimore is the latest city to ban soda
Posted at 2:32 PM, Jul 19, 2018

Several cities are taking sugary drinks off the kids menu. 

There are currently 10 cities across the country that have enacted a bill banning sugary drinks, including 8 cities in California, 1 in Colorado and Maryland.

Baltimore, Maryland is the latest, and largest, city to pass the bill.

Lafayette, Colorado was the catalyst for Baltimore to make a healthy change in their city.

Martino's Pizzeria in Lafayette took soda off the kids menu a long time ago, and they're happy to know other restaurants in town will have to do the same. 

Cities where kids menus exclude sugary drinks only offer milk, 100% fruit juice and sparkling water.

MJ Vacco, owner of Martino's Pizzeria, keeps juice and milk in the refrigerator at eye level for kids. Vacco believes giving kids a limited selection of drinks is the company's way of helping to make a healthy difference in their lives.

1 in 3 kids are overweight or obese, according to the American Heart Association.

In Baltimore, 30 percent of kids are overweight, says Shaw McIntosh with Sugar Free Kids of Maryland.

Although soda is no longer an option, juice is still on the menu, which contains sugar. 

"The bill that we passed limits juice to 8oz, which is the recommendation from the American Academy of Pediatrics," McIntosh says.

Although, majority of the parents in Lafayette appreciate the healthy change, Vacco says, there are still parents who order soda for their kids.

"Yes, I think soda is the number 1 consumed," Vacco says. "We sell way more soda than we would other options." 

Overall, the City of Lafayette finds the sugary drink-free bill sweet enough to keep. But, there are other cities struggling to pass the bill. 

"I know New York City has tried, and they are going to try again and keep trying," says McIntosh. 

This might be a small step, but McIntosh believe it will make a lasting impression.

"If you can keep kids from drinking sugary beverages on a regular basis and teach them it's a once in a while thing, then, they actually develop healthy habits early on."