The Food and Drug Administration has released its long-awaited final regulations on menu labeling for restaurants.
The menu-labeling regulations, which were passed as part of the 2010 health care law, require chain restaurants with 20 or more locations under the same brand to include calorie counts on menus, menu boards and drive-thru displays and provide other nutritional information to customers.
The regulations are voluntary for restaurants that have fewer than 20 locations.
The National Restaurant Association supported the menu-labeling regulations as a way to avoid a patchwork of differing state and local requirements.
The industry has a year to comply with the new rule.
Look for more detailed information and analysis from the NRA, including a webinar, after the Thanksgiving holiday.
To learn more here is the FDA rule and the FDA press release.
At the state level, WRA was successful in helping to pass the "Big Gulp Amendment' which prevents units of local government from regulating portion sizes, nutritional labeling, nutritional content of foods served - for any size of restaurant, movie theater, grocer, etc. The law also prohibits local governments from banning foods they don't approve of, such as foie gras.
Read the NRA's statement on the federal rules.