Statement of CSPI Nutrition Policy Director Margo G. Wootan
Soda and other sugary drinks raise kids’ risks for diabetes, heart disease, and obesity, and it’s completely inappropriate for restaurants to promote them as the default choice with kids’ meals.
Parents in Davis, California, should be pleased and proud that the city council has passed an ordinance making milk or water, and not soda, the default beverages for meals intended for young children. Of course, parents are still free to request soda.
More cities and states should consider following Davis’ lead. The biggest restaurant chains have already decided that the kids’ menu is no place for soda. McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, and most recently Dairy Queen, have joined chains like Panera, Subway, and Chipotle that already don’t offer soda or other sugary drinks with kids’ meals.
One day seeing soda on a kids’ menu will be like seeing an ashtray in a doctor’s office.