New Orleans just passed a new ordinance that has some raising their eyebrows.

New Orleans unanimously passed a new City Council ordinance that states that a healthy drink must accompany a meal that is on the Children’s menu at all local restaurants.

What is a healthy drink?
Restaurants will now be required to serve water, milk, or a juice drink with children’s meals.

The goal of the new law is to reduce childhood obesity. According to outgoing District E Councilmember, Cyndi Nguyen, kids aged 2 to 4 in New Orleans have a 14% obesity rate.

Parents would still be able to order a soft drink if they choose but they would have to order from the full menu.

“This is really about helping our young people to stay healthy, but not taking away the rights of our parents,” Nguyen said. “We really see this as a very simple step to educate and nudge our families towards a healthier option.”

The city of New Orleans realized that restaurants would need some time to change their menus and get the drinks in stock, so the ordinance will go into effect on New Year’s Day 2023.

Justin Sullivan, Getty Images
Justin Sullivan, Getty Images

However, this new law received some hesitance from many within the restaurant and beverage industry.

“Our industry has been struggling,” said Danielle Leger of the Louisiana Restaurant Association. “We appreciate the important issues of children’s health being raised, however, we ask that you will instead adopt a resolution at this time.”


New Orleans is joining 40 other cities and four states that have passed similar legislation.

You can see from the Tweets below that this new law is creating a division among the residents of New Orleans.

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