Milk or Water Must Be Default Kids' Meal Drink Under New Law - NBC Southern California

Milk or Water Must Be Default Kids' Meal Drink Under New Law

Sodas and sugary drinks will be available only by request.

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    California restaurants that sell kids' meals will have to offer milk or water as the default drink option beginning in 2019.

    Kids' meals will have to be served with non-dairy alternative of less than 130 calories, water or flavored water with no added sweeteners. Sodas and sugary drinks will be available by request.

    The law follows ordinances enacted in a number of cities and counties around the state in recent years.

    "Our state is in the midst of a public health crisis where rates of preventable health conditions like obesity and Type-2 Diabetes are skyrocketing, due in large part to increased consumption of sugary beverages," State Senator Bill Monning, the law's author, said in a statement.

    According to Monning, parents are more likely to choose a sugary drink for their children when it is the default option, even when a healthier choice is available.

    Restaurants failing to follow the new law will face a minor penalty, additional violations over five- year period would result in fines starting at $250, but only a single fine would be assessed by inspection.

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