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Perris, CA to Stop Serving Sugary Drinks As Default With Kids' Meals

Statement of CSPI Deputy Director of Nutrition Policy Jessica Almy

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Last night the city of Perris, California passed an ordinance to support parents’ efforts to feed their children well when eating out.

The Perris law ensures that children won’t be served sugary drinks automatically with children’s meals (but families can still order them). Restaurant kids’ meals are intended for little kids, and just one soda exceeds the American Heart Association’s upper limit for added sugars for an entire day for children and teenagers.

Perris joins the cities of Davis and Stockton, which have similar policies.

Norms are changing around soda and other sugary drinks in America. Sugary drinks contribute to an increased risk of developing heart disease and type 2 diabetes. They are no longer served in schools, and restaurants shouldn’t be pushing them on little kids. A growing number of restaurants—including McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, Dairy Queen, Jack in the Box, and Applebee’s—no longer push sugary drinks on their kids’ menus. Now the restaurants in the city of Perris join them.

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Contact Jeff Cronin (jcronin[at]cspinet.org) or Ariana Stone (astone[at]cspinet.org).