N.J. Latest State to Tackle Menu Labeling

According to Nation’s Restaurant News, “ Officials of the New Jersey Restaurant Association say they strongly oppose the passage of a bill requiring some restaurants in the state to post calorie counts on menus and menu boards.”

“The measure, which was approved Monday by the Senate’s state health committee by a vote of 7-0, requires restaurants in New Jersey with 20 or more outlets across the country to post calorie counts adjacent to food and beverage items and offer additional nutritional information to customers upon request. Daily specials, temporary menu items, customized orders or food or beverage items from the salad bar would be excluded, the bill says. Operators who do not post the calorie information or knowingly give incorrect information could be fined from $50 to $100 for the first offense and $250 to $500 for subsequent offenses. Deborah Dowdell, president of the New Jersey Restaurant Association, says although the association opposes menu-labeling mandates at the state level, it supports bipartisan federal legislation that would establish a uniform standard, block frivolous lawsuits and pre-empt existing state and local laws.”