Kiddie Meal Toys Banned, High-Fat Meals Saved

Sheri Reed
16

Happy Meal toy
Flickr photo by Loimere
Yesterday, the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors in Silicon Valley, California, voted to ban toys in fast food kiddie meals that are high in calories, sodium, or fat, reports Babble.

In other words, just like so many odd, backward decisions made in this country, the people have voted to take out the toy instead of the high-fat foods.

I guess removing the toy does take away the allure of the friendly kids meals (and believe me, I'm not going to protest cheap plastic toy bans anytime soon). However, if the point is that we want restaurants to serve healthier foods, shouldn't we put a ban on the fattening foods rather than on the toys?

Once passed, this ordinance will make it mandatory for restaurants to either offer a healthier meal with the toys or take the toys out altogether. Hmmm. But the world loves fast food! Does anyone really think cheeseburger-and-French-fry-loving families are going to give up buying kiddie meals just because there's no toy inside anymore?

Madeline Holler at Babble says, "There’s no way the companies will give up the cross-promotional toys. Now we get to see what they come up with for less than 500 calories, only 10% from sugar (including drink!), and 600 mg of salt."

I guess she's right. This ban might be hitting fast food companies in the money belt; however, I'm doubting that's going to do what the city's hoping. We all watched Food Revolution, and when given a choice, kids opt for the bad stuff -- and frankly, don't many of us busy parents often concur? Isn't our only real option if we want nutritional change to offer better meals?

What do you think of this recent ban? Would you still order your kids Happy Meals if they don't have the toys inside?

Read More