NEW YORK (CNN) — New York’s Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that New York City’s ban on large sugary drinks, which was previously blocked by lower courts, is illegal.
“We hold that the New York City Board of Health, in adopting the ‘Sugary Drinks Portion Cap Rule,’ exceeded the scope of its regulatory authority,” the ruling said.
Christopher Gindlesperger, a spokesman for the American Beverage Association, praised the ruling.
“We are pleased that the lower courts’ decisions were upheld,” he said in a statement. “It would have created an uneven playing field for thousands of small businesses in the city and limited New Yorkers’ freedom of choice. With this ruling behind us, we look forward to collaborating with city leaders on solutions that will have a meaningful and lasting impact on New Yorkers and families across the country.”
Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg had pushed for the ban on sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces as a way to fight obesity and other health problems.
In a statement, Bloomberg’s successor, Mayor Bill de Blasio, said expressed disappointment with the decision.
“The negative effects of sugary drink over-consumption on New Yorkers’ health, particularly among low-income communities, are irrefutable,” the statement said. “We cannot turn our backs on the high rates of obesity and diabetes that adversely impact the lives of so many of our residents. While we are still examining the Court’s decision, it is our responsibility to address the causes of this epidemic, and the City is actively reviewing all of its options to protect the health and well-being of our communities.”