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NYSBA Opposes Restrictions on Food Advertising

As we go to press, the New York legislature is in the final days of the legislative session. We are working on a number of bills that are moving their way through the Senate and Assembly.

One of the bills we are looking at would enact very restrictive rules on food advertising (S213B & A.4424B). We strongly opposed this legislation.

The legislation is overly broad and could result in endless litigation involving legitimate advertisements for products in New York. Notably, while the legislative findings claim that the bill’s focus is on protecting children, the scope of the legislation would apply to all advertisements and not just those directed at children. Children are defined as people 18 years of age or younger.

The proposed legislation is so vague it would have a chilling effect on all of New York's food product advertising. To avoid potential litigation, many food producers will simply stop advertising their products. Such a result raises significant First Amendment questions and concerns.

This legislation is being debated on the New York Senate Floor today.

You can see our Memo in Opposition here.

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