FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press Release # 080-07 Monday, September 17, 2007
CONTACT INFORMATION FOR MEDIA: (212) 788-5290
Sara Markt (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Celina De Leon (email@example.com)
94% OF INSPECTED RESTAURANTS IN COMPLIANCE WITH FIRST PHASE OF TRANS FAT REGULATION
Margarine is the Main Problem for the Few Violations Issued
Grace Period Ends October 1
NEW YORK CITY – September 17, 2007 – Nearly all New York
City restaurants are now complying with the first phase of the city’s new trans
fat regulation, the Health Department reported today. Those restaurants still
using spreads or fry oils that contain artificial trans fat have just two weeks
left to switch products to be in compliance with the regulation. The Health
Department will begin issuing fines on October 1.
Some 94% of the more than 3,300 restaurants inspected between July 1 and
September 1 had switched to spreads and oils containing zero grams of artificial
trans fat. The rate was 50% before the regulation was passed and reached 80% in
June, when restaurants had begun to gear up for implementation. Nearly all of
the violations noted thus far have been for margarine use, which is easy to
replace with more healthful alternatives. After the three-month grace period
ends on October 1st, restaurants will be subject to fines that start at
“Despite claims to the contrary, New York City restaurants have shown that
it’s easy to get artificial trans fat out of spreads and fry oils,” said Dr.
Thomas R. Frieden, Health Commissioner for New York City. “New Yorkers are now
enjoying more healthful foods without any change in taste or price. We encourage
the few restaurants still using artificial trans fat for frying or spreading to
adopt a healthier alternative before October 1. Any restaurant that wants help
or clarification on how to make the switch can call 311 and ask for the Trans
Fat Help Center.”
This first phase of the regulation applies to oils, shortening and margarines
used for frying and as spreads. It does not apply to baked goods or prepared
foods, or to oils used to deep-fry dough or cake batter. Those products are
covered by the second phase of the initiative, which takes effect on July 1,
The Health Department, with a grant from the American Heart Association,
launched a Trans Fat Help Center in April to help restaurants switch from
artificial trans fat to more healthful oils. The Help Center offers the
following resources at no cost to restaurants:
Help Line. Restaurants can call 311 to reach the Trans
Fat Help Line for information on the regulation and for advice from culinary
experts. Assistance is also available in Chinese, Spanish, and more than 150
other languages through interpreters.
easy-to-use resources that are available to restaurants 24 hours a day, seven
days a week. Restaurant operators may download “0 Grams Trans Fat” product
lists and a guide to frying without trans fat. They can also get information
about classes, or download a brochure on the new regulations.
Classes for Restaurant Operators. Restaurant operators
can sign up for classes on cooking and baking without artificial trans fat.
Classes will be offered monthly through December 2008 in English and Spanish
and in a variety of locations. For information on how to sign up, visit www.notransfatnyc.org.