WASHINGTON – On Nov. 3, the National Restaurant Association criticized the San Francisco Board of Supervisors’ recent vote to approve an ordinance requiring restaurant kids' meals meet certain nutritional standards before they could be sold with toys. San Francisco is the first city in the US to forbid restaurants from offering a free toy with meals that contain more than a set level of calories, sugar and fat. The ordinance may also require fruits and vegetables be included in children’s meals that come with toys.

"[The Nov. 3] decision by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors is very disappointing,” said Scott DeFife, executive vice president of policy and government affairs for the NRA. “Rather than focusing on real solutions to the problem of childhood obesity, the Board chose to push forward an unpopular and misguided ordinance that will likely do nothing to help address this problem. Parents and guardians should be making the decisions about their family dining experiences.

“The National Restaurant Association continues to advocate a more holistic approach to combating childhood obesity by providing consumers with more information and options, promoting healthful menu items, increasing produce offerings, encouraging more physical activity, and enhancing consumer education," he added.

“We are extremely disappointed with this decision. It’s not what our customers want, nor is it something they asked for,” Ashlee Yingling, spokesperson, McDonald’s USA, told MEATPOULTRY.com.

Public opinion continues to be overwhelmingly against this misguided legislation, she added. “Parents tell us it's their right and responsibility – not the government's – to make their own decisions and to choose what’s right for their children,” she said. “Credible and objective research demonstrates this proposal is unrealistic based on data showing that most children rarely eat a meal as detailed by the proposed ordinance.

“We are extremely proud of our Happy Meals, which give our youngest guests wholesome food and toys of the highest quality,” she continued.” Getting a toy with a kid's meal is just one part of a fun, family experience at McDonald's.”