Oh, good: ObamaCare may help raise supermarket prices, too

posted at 7:51 pm on February 7, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

ObamaCare’s benevolent promise to help control and curtail healthcare-related costs is already going magnificently bust; why not just extend the consequences of heightened compliance costs and pricey taxes to an entirely other but equally indispensable economic sector while they’re at it, right?

As the Federal Drug Administration so munificently explains, part of ObamaCare’s overall purpose is to help provide Americans with all of the tools they need to lead healthier lives (with a universal healthcare system that requires society to absorb the costs of individuals’ daily health-related decisions, what choice do they have but to butt into those decisions?) — and so they’re proposing to extend the provision requiring restaurants to disclose nutrition facts to all supermarkets and convenience stores, in order to “help consumers limit excess calorie intake and understand how the foods that they purchase at these establishments fit within their daily caloric and other nutritional needs.” Fox News reports:

Supermarket owners argue a pending federal food-labeling rule that stems from the new health care law would overburden thousands of grocers and convenience store owners — to the tune of $1 billion in the first year alone.

Store owner Tom Heinen said the industry’s profit margins already are razor thin. “When you incur a significant cost, there is no way that that doesn’t get passed on to the customer in some form,” he said.

The rule stems from an ObamaCare mandate that restaurants provide nutrition information on menus. …

The proposed regulation would require store owners to label prepared, unpackaged foods found in salad bars and food bars, soups and bakery items. Erik Lieberman, regulatory counsel at the Food Marketing Institute, said testing foods for nutritional data will require either expensive software or even more costly off-site laboratory assessments.

Salad and hot food bars in grocery shops, sandwiches at convenience stores, and every type of muffin at the local bakery: The regulation would require that all of these businesses undergo the extensive process of breaking down the nutrition facts of their many items. Sounds great in theory, except that doing so ain’t free — and the costs of the regulation are going to be paid for by you and me.


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