Legislation prohibits frivolous lawsuits targeting foodservice industry

May 07, 2007
Contact: Chrissy Shott 202-331-5902, Maureen Ryan 202-331-5939

(Washington, DC) The National Restaurant Association announced its strong support for “The Personal Responsibility in Food Consumption Act” introduced today by Senators Mark Pryor (D-AR) and Mitch McConnell (R-KY) in the Senate, and Representatives Dan Boren (D-OK) and Ric Keller (R-FL) in the House. The legislation would prohibit the filing of frivolous lawsuits against restaurants and the foodservice industry on the basis of obesity.

“This legislation addresses the serious issue of abusive lawsuits that claim a plaintiff’s obesity or weight gain is the responsibility of a person who produces or sells food,” said Peter Kilgore, the Association’s acting interim president and chief executive officer. “Restaurants should not be blamed for issues of personal responsibility and freedom of choice. The idea that individual obesity will be affected by blaming restaurants and food companies for these decisions and then suing them for inordinate sums of money is absurd. People make choices about what to eat, when to eat and how much to eat each day.”

Dietary experts agree that all foods can be part of a healthy lifestyle, which can best be attained through energy balance and moderation. Restaurants are only part of the equation when it comes to healthy lifestyle choices. Good nutrition, education, personal responsibility and choice go hand-in-hand.

The National Restaurant Association leads the Commonsense Consumption Coalition, a coalition of pro-business groups and associations united to prohibit frivolous obesity lawsuits. For more information about the National Restaurant Association and its proactive commitment to healthy lifestyles, please visit www.restaurant.org.

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