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The Case of Menu Labeling

The Case of Menu Labeling

(p.157) 7 The Case of Menu Labeling
Bending the Rules
Rachel Augustine Potter
University of Chicago Press

This chapter investigates how a multitude of procedural tools functioned in the context of a single, high-profile rule. This case study approach draws a direct connection between the procedural machinations undergirding a rulemaking and the final policy outcome. The rule in question was issued by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under the Obama administration, and required chain restaurants and other retail food establishments to display nutritional information on their in-store menus. The so-called ``menu-labeling rule'' was difficult for the FDA to tackle, and this chapter explains how the agency used the procedural politicking tools introduced in the previous chapters to steer the process in its preferred direction. Because much of what happens in rulemaking occurs behind the agency's closed doors, the chapter draws on interviews with bureaucrats and interest group officials, as well as primary source documents to illustrate these mechanisms.

Keywords:   menu labeling, procedural politicking, Food and Drug Administration, case study, bureaucrat, interest groups

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