The Knesset Economic Affairs Committee on Sunday approved for a first reading in the plenum a bill that would close loopholes in a section of the 1981 Consumer Protection Law known as the “Popcorn Law” that prevented consumers from bringing their own food and beverages to movie theaters, sporting events, and similar gatherings.
Though the law was intended to allow consumers to bring their own food, business owners have been getting around the provision by getting an outside vendor to sell the food.
According to MK Tali Ploskov (Kulanu), because the law targets business owners that sell food, the vendor loophole has allowed the business – owners to claim it does not apply to them. ”Therefore, I proposed a minor amendment to the law that would close the loophole and [make it illegal] to ban consumers from bringing food and beverages of the same kind that are sold at the venue, regardless of who is selling them.”
“A family with children who goes to the movie theater to see a movie and wants to buy their kids popcorn has to spend some NIS 200, and if they want to save money and bring food from home, the loophole in the law can prevent that if the seller is a vendor, and the family members again become a captive market,” she said. ”The amendment will allow those who want to save money to bring snacks from home, it will prevent situations in which consumers are captive and it may cause business owners to reduce prices.”
Committee chairman Eitan Cabel (Zionist Camp) said the proposal is meant to ensure that crafty business-owners wouldn`t be able to find other loopholes that would call for additional amendments.