Restaurants, Lobbying, and the Politics of Persuasion

March 17, 2016

Throughout the 2016 election, Eater’s column Politics Plated will investigate the surprisingly interconnected relationship between politics and the food industry. In this installment, a look at food companies’ drive to influence legislation and policy makers.

The food and beverage industry cares as much about politics as voters. The industry spent more than $33 million on lobbying in 2015, according to political research group OpenSecrets. A third of that came from restaurants and bars, which want to influence laws and protect their bottom lines. But many of the issues top food companies are lobbying are ones intended to protect everyday consumers and…