Big Soda Sues San Francisco

soda ad

The American Beverage Association (ABA) sued the city of San Francisco on Friday declaring that the recently passed legislation requiring warning labels on drinks with added sugars like soda, juice and energy drinks is unconstitutional.

In an historic move last month, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to add health warnings to advertisements for sweetened drinks on billboards, taxis, buses and posters. This is the first law of its kind in the U.S. that will require ads for sugary drinks to include the following, “WARNING: Drinking beverages with added sugar(s) contributes to obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay. This is a message from the City and County of San Francisco.”

According to the SF Chronicle, the ABA lawsuit states that San Francisco “is trying to ensure that there is no free marketplace of ideas, but instead only a government-imposed, one-sided public 'dialogue' on the topic -- in violation of the First Amendment."

The California State Outdoor Advertising Association and the California Retailers Association has joined the American Beverage Association in the lawsuit. Health warnings on ads will officially go into effect on July 25, 2016.

Watch our exclusive interview with Supervisor Scott Wiener in front of City Hall right after his sugary drink legislation passed unanimously on June 9, 2015.