Photo: crd!, Flickr
We're not sure if the folks in the City of Watsonville, California, were fans of Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution, but we're pretty sure the star-chef would give a high-five to its council members. In a 6-1 vote on Tuesday, members passed a Healthy Eating Options ordinance, requiring all new restaurants (and existing restaurants looking to expand), to offer healthy options on their menus if they want to secure a building permit.
"It's a very attainable requirement," says Marcela Tavantzis, assistant city manager. "We're not trying to dissuade businesses from coming to Wastonville. The threshold is very low, but it's designed to get restaurants to think about their selections."
The ordinance is based on a point system determined by a list of options. Offering whole-grain bread will earn a restaurant one point. Prepare fish, chicken or beef by broiling, baking or poaching? Bingo! Two points. Offer water free of charge to customers? Yup. That's another point. To secure a permit, restaurateurs need a total of six points. Existing restaurants are also encouraged, but not required, to participate. Certificates are given to businesses that earn nine points, while restaurants that reach 13 will be able to proudly display a Golden Carrot Award. (Sounds like hot-dog joints should rethink the new construction in Watsonville.)