Calif. Restaurant Association Sues Over Natural Gas Ban, Says Steaks, Stir Fry, And Veggies At Risk


The California Restaurant Association (CRA) is suing the city of Berkeley, California over its decision to ban natural gas, claiming that seared steaks, charred vegetables, and stir fried noodles may all become a thing of the past thanks to the city’s new law, set to go into effect in only a matter of weeks.

According to the CRA website, the ban that intends to make natural gas illegal in newly constructed building”violates both state and federal law” and “will have uniquely negative impacts on restaurants.”

Among these impacts include an end to many Americans’ favorite foods: steaks, vegetables, and stir fry.

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“It would be difficult to overstate these impacts, which are numerous,” reads the CRA website. “Whether searing steaks, charring vegetables, or stir-frying noodles, chefs and cooks rely on the most important tool in the creation of a dish – fire.”

“This ban will slow down the process of cooking and reduce a chef’s control over the amount and intensity of heat which is needed to prepare food appropriately,” said Robert W. Phillips, a professional chef and chairman of the Chef De Cuisine Association of California, who was quoted extensively in the CRA press release.

“It’s like taking paint away from a painter and asking them to create a masterpiece.”

Worse, the CRA believes Berkeley’s new ordinance will exacerbate the intentional blackouts faced by Californians as the local energy company attempts to prevent more wildfires.

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“Perhaps most worrisome is the question of how this ban will exacerbate the already damaging impact of ongoing, planned electricity blackouts meant to prevent wildfires – blackouts that affect the restaurant industry along with everyone else,” according to the website. “With California’s energy grid often under tremendous strain, a ban on gas appliances is not responsible, and its impact won’t be limited only to restaurants.”

As National File recently reported, another California town has taken the unprecedented step of forcing citizens to secure permits in order to use a generator during the devastating blackouts.