The McDonald's Happy Meal Could Soon Be Banned In Canada, Thanks To A Newly Proposed Law
A private member's bill aims to prohibit food and drink marketing towards children.
The introduction of a new private member's bill by Conservative senator Nancy Greene Raine could mean the end of children-geared food and drinks, the National Post reports.
The Child Health Protection bill looks to lower obesity among children by amending Canada's Food and Drinks Act to ban the marketing of consumable products for youth under 17 years old. The move is a response to recent statistics that show a rise in Canadian teens afflicted with obesity, heart disease and Type-2 diabetes.
A similar ban is already in effect in Quebec, which prevents marketing ploys targeted to anyone under 13 years old. Although the bill is at risk of conflict with certain freedoms of expression, such hurdle has been overcome in Quebec and the same could easily happen for the rest of Canada.
The food industry is highly critical of the bill, stating that it detracts from the real causes of youth obesity - the lack of proper diet and exercise. It also believes that parents are accountable for keeping track of what their children eat and drink.
The passing of this bill into law could affect sports sponsorships for youth teams and programs that provide benefits to hundreds of thousands of kids across the country each year. However, the government assures that steps will be taken to prevent that from happening.
While it's typically rare for private member's bills to be adopted by government, it's definitely not impossible. In this particular case, the bill may receive more support due to its connection to a highly relevant issue in the country.
The bill was given second reading in the House of Commons on Tuesday and is currently in the process of being considered.