Last month, San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom issued a proclamation declaring this summer, through August 2010, as another Soda Free Summer. Newsom’s action was meant to encourage all San Franciscans to opt for healthy alternatives to calorically sweetened beverages.
In an effort to lead by example, Newsome has now issued an executive order that bans vending machines on city property from dispensing Coke, Pepsi and other calorically sweetened beverages. Sports drinks and artificially sweetened water also are included in the ban (MLive.com).
The California Center for Public Health Advocacy recently presented evidence demonstrating a direct link between soda consumption and obesity. Other studies have shown that sweetened beverage consumption trends parallel the rise in obesity.
The city of San Francisco has been on a crusade to address the public health crisis of obesity, inactivity, and poor nutrition, as well as the excessive waste produced by consumption of bottled beverages.
In June 2007, Mayor Newsom signed an executive order that banned the city from using taxpayer money to buy bottled water for its employees.
Despite owning a pristine mountain reservoir said to produce some of the country’s best-tasting tap water, the city was estimated to spend nearly $500,000 a year on bottled water at the time the order was signed (SFGate).
MLive.com reports that “beyond the vending machine ban, San Francisco’s Newsom also wants to impose a retail fee on soda.”
Image Credit: Flickr - dcJohn