Legislation restricting restaurant marketing debated in House of Commons

Published December 14, 2017

An election promise by the federal government to restrict marketing to kids is morphing in to an outright ban on food marketing by restaurants.

Restaurants Canada was particularly concerned because, for the purpose of this initiative, Health Canada defines children as being under the age of 17, rather than under 13 as stated in the Quebec legislation that the prime minister cited as a model.

Health Canada’s proposed definition of “healthy” is so restrictive that some meals advertised by restaurants would not meet the criteria.

Health Canada’s approach is so broad that it will prohibit restaurants from communicating with their customers through in-restaurant materials and will impact sponsorships, charitable giving, logos, websites, social media, apps, etc.

Health Canada’s initiative is augmented by Bill S-228, which would amend the Food and Drugs Act by prohibiting food and beverage marketing directed at children. It is sponsored by Conservative Senator Nancy Greene Raine and is being shepherded through the House of Commons by Liberal MP Dr. Doug Eyolfson.

In advance of the first hour of debate on the bill in the House of Commons on December 12, Restaurants Canada wrote a letter to all MPs outlining our industry’s concerns.

As the first hour of debate on the bill began, Dr. Eyolfson, MP for Charleswood-St. James-Assiniboia-Headingly, indicated the government’s intention to make two amendments.  The first is to redefine children as under 13 instead of under 17 – a top priority for Restaurants Canada – as well as implementing a parliamentary review of the bill in five years to examine the outcome on childhood obesity and advertising to teenagers.

For more information on how this initiative will impact you and what you can do, please contact Joyce Reynolds or David Lefebvre.

wpengine

Nam dapibus nisl vitae elit fringilla rutrum. Aenean sollicitudin, erat a elementum rutrum, neque sem pretium metus, quis mollis nisl nunc et massa. Vestibulum sed metus in lorem tristique ullamcorper id vitae erat.

More from wpengine

STAY IN THE KNOW

SIGN UP FOR RESTAURANT'S CANADA NEWSLETTER

RC Insider gives you snackable bites of must-read industry news and timely research, as well as useful tools and tips, every two weeks.