Odious Obamacare is about more than crippling families with massive cost increases and destroying the market for innovation that has created so many lifesaving drugs and treatments.

The small-business regulatory compliance costs for restaurants and grocery stores to report calorie counts for each and every menu offering, which would go into effect in December 2016, are threatening to add yet another burden to ma-and-pa outfits across the country.

Wednesday, the bipartisan”Common Sense Nutrition Disclosure Act” was approved by voice vote to move to the full House committee and means some relief from the insanity of Big Government may be on the way. The bill seeks to ease the requirements of restaurants and grocery stores to disclose the calorie counts for their foodstuffs, regulations that add up to nearly 400 pages of national disclosure requirements from the FDA. The compliance required is overwhelming enough for some Democrats to part from their Dear Leader and join Republicans seeking to amend the process.

But what’s more awkward for the Obama nutrition-gestapo is that a study from NYU reported on in the Wall Street Journal this week shows that there is virtually no difference in menu-ordering when consumers are provided with calorie counts.

Menu Labeling from Menu Labeling on Vimeo.

I suppose that’s what is known in the market-research world as “science.” And the Progressive faithful would be… “Deniers”:

New York University researchers used receipts and surveys at McDonald’s, Burger King, KFC and Wendy’s to track customer purchases. In New York City where menus were labeled, calories averaged between 804 and 839 per meal, essentially the same as the 802 to 857 calories at fast-food locations in New Jersey that didn’t post calorie content.

Say you’re a pizza chain offering the usual selection of condiments to your customers: pepperoni, sausage, olives, onions, pineapple, extra cheese, etc. — under Obamacare’s accompanying regulations, you have to post the calorie count for every possible combination of toppings, for every size and slice of pizza. For Domino’s pizza that would amount to posting 34 million different calorie sums given their variety of toppings.

Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), cosponsor of the legislation, explained:

This regulation tries a cookie cutter approach, treating grocers, convenience stores, and pizzerias with endless combination possibilities the same way as restaurants with constant, simple menu items….Requiring pizza franchises to post in their store every potential topping combination, more than 34 million possible outcomes, when more than 90 percent of their orders take place over the phone or the Internet, just doesn’t make sense.

The current regulations state that menu-labeling requirements apply to:

…[Any] standard menu item that is offered for sale in a restaurant or similar retail food establishment that is part of a chain with 20 or more locations doing business under the same name….

Requiring that they disclose on the menu itself, the “menu board,” and in a written statement available to the customer:

…the number of calories contained in the standard menu item, as usually prepared and offered for sale; and (bb) a succinct statement concerning suggested daily caloric intake, as specified by the Secretary by regulation and posted prominently on the menu and designed to enable the public to understand, in the context of a total daily diet, the significance of the caloric information that is provided on the menu…

Places like Domino’s have in fact already been providing calorie information on their website, where the vast majority of orders take place. They have been doing so for a decade, without government coercion or nonsensical bureaucratic regulations coercing them to do so.


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