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NUTRITION LABELING BILL MAKES SENSE FOR CONSUMERS AND FRANCHISED BUSINESSES

For immediate release 
Contact: Alisa Harrison, 202-628-8000


WASHINGTON, DC, Sept. 26, 2008—The International Franchise Association (IFA) today applauded the introduction of the Labeling Education and Nutrition (LEAN)  Act introduced by Sens. Tom Carper (D-Del.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) to help provide consumers with the same consistent nutritional information when dining at foodservice establishments as when they purchase food products at retail outlets.

Recently, many states and cities are pursuing a patchwork of menu labeling mandates.  Complying with different rules for difference cities and states places an unnecessary burden on many franchised businesses.  The LEAN Act would expand the federal Nutrition Labeling and Education Act (NLEA) to provide a uniform national nutrition standard for food service establishments, including grocery stores that serve prepared foods, that have 20 or more locations. 

Food service outlets would be required to disclose calories for each menu item so that consumers can see such information before they order their meal.  Under the bill, calories will be posted directly on the menu, menu board or in one of the approved alternative ways, such as a menu insert or a sign directly next to the menu board.

“There is no one-size-fits-all approach for the way nutrition information is provided in stores.  Many restaurants, convenience stores and other members of IFA could be impacted by this proposal,” said IFA Vice President David French.  “This bill provides the flexibility for our members to continue providing nutrition information to consumers in a way that best makes sense for their systems.”

French added that consumers win in two ways with this legislation.  They will have consistent nutrition information from location to location, and they will not be burdened with higher costs associated with the franchise having to comply with different rules and policies for every location. 

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About The International Franchise Association
The International Franchise Association, the world’s oldest and largest organization representing franchising, is the preeminent voice and acknowledged leader for the industry worldwide. Approaching a half-century of service with a growing membership of more than 1,300 franchise systems, 10,000-plus franchisees and more than 500 firms that supply goods and services to the industry, IFA protects, enhances and promotes franchising by advancing the values of integrity, respect, trust, commitment to excellence, honesty and diversity. For more information, visit the IFA Web site at www.franchise.org

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