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Couple looking at menuWASHINGTON — Like it or not, many restaurant diners will soon know more about what they are eating under new menu labeling requirements proposed by the Food and Drug Administration.

The new requirements will force chain restaurants with 20 or more locations, along with bakeries, grocery stores, convenience stores and coffee shops, to clearly post the amount of calories in each item on menus and drive-through lanes.

Exempt from the rules are movie theaters, airplanes, bowling alleys and other businesses whose primary business is not to sell food, according to the FDA.

The calorie postings, which could be in effect by early 2012, were required in the health care overhaul legislation signed into law last year.


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