Transparency is a hot topic in the food world these days. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently finalized an update to the nutrition facts panel for packaged foods. The U.S. Senate last week advanced a bill addressing the labeling of genetically engineered foods, which the U.S. House is expected to vote on today.… Continue Reading
Add this to FDA’s growing list of things to do: improve the food recall initiation process.
According to a memorandum published on June 8, 2016, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human Services (which houses FDA) has preliminarily concluded that FDA does not have proper policies and procedures in… Continue Reading
If you are one of those consumers that studies food labels (I’m right there with you) or, more importantly, a packaged food supplier, be prepared: your food labels will be getting a makeover.
On May 20, the FDA released its final revised Nutrition Facts Label. Its release caused quite a stir: Michelle Obama made… Continue Reading
Some folks are feeling a little salty about last week’s turn of events in the New York City sodium labeling ordinance saga.
On May 26, 2016, a New York state appellate court lifted a temporary stay on New York City’s sodium labeling ordinance. The ordinance, passed unanimously in September 2015 by New York City’s Board… Continue Reading
Last year the State of California added Bisphenol A (BPA) to its list of chemicals known to cause cancer or reproductive harm under Prop 65 [the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986], a law which requires warnings for such exposures in California. The warning requirement kicked in a year later – May… Continue Reading
A day before new sodium labeling regulations were set to take effect in New York City, a New York state appeals court granted a temporary stay, pausing the implementation and enforcement of the new requirements.
Under the regulations, New York City restaurants with fifteen or more locations nationwide would have been required to post a… Continue Reading
On February 22, a packed room of food technologists and cereal chemists in Minneapolis heard from a panel of speakers about the hot debate surrounding GMO-labeling, an issue that is unlikely to be resolved any time soon.
At the center of the debate is a 2014 Vermont GMO-labeling law that is set to take effect… Continue Reading
What is the most vexing legal issue today facing companies that rely on independent contractors to perform essential services? Treating the engaging firm as the “joint employer” of their contractors’ workers. Joint employment legal risks extend to all companies that license their brand to independent licensees, distributors, dealers, or franchisees or that engage others that… Continue Reading
Crises averted in international trade usually make good economics, but unsatisfying politics. They’re a half-loaf of success in which positioning, inertia and self-interest usually win. So it is with the recent repeal of meat country of origin labeling (“COOL”) laws.
The basic story is that the 2002 and 2008 Farm Bills included COOL provisions requiring… Continue Reading
Although many of us will share a bountiful table of food with loved ones this holiday season, there are many for whom putting food on the table is a struggle (and not just during the holidays). At the same time, 40% of food in the United States goes to waste. How do we, as a… Continue Reading
Oregon decided to participate in New Year’s resolutions this year. As the season becomes colder, Oregon employers will be required to follow a host of new laws passed by the state legislature that will significantly affect the workplace. These laws, which go into effect Jan. 1, 2016, pertain to all restaurants, hotels, and food and… Continue Reading
If a food is labeled organic, but is not actually organic, can a consumer bring state law claims under consumer protection statutes? In California, it appears that the answer is yes.
In a recent case, Quesada v. Herb Thyme Farms, Inc., the California Supreme Court answered that question affirmatively when it unanimously ruled that… Continue Reading
Think of that busy mom in a grocery store, standing in front of a wall of granola bars. How does she choose which one to buy? Does she pick the all-natural chocolate peanut butter kind or the not-all-natural chocolate peanut butter kind? Does she believe that products labeled “natural” actually are natural? What does “natural”… Continue Reading
“Natural”, “organic”, obesity, water, subsidies, pesticides, “local”, “healthy”, genetically-modified food, diabetes, menu labeling, workers’ rights, food labeling, food safety, international trade – the list of hot-button issues in food and agriculture could go on for pages. As the national conversation about food and agriculture gets louder, and seemingly more divisive, it can be challenging to… Continue Reading
The last few years have seen tremendous changes in the food industry, including passage of the Food Safety Modernization Act; continued criticism of the GRAS (generally recognized as safe) process; increased enforcement of and litigation about food claims and classifications and their intersection with marketing and advertising efforts; and increased demands of managing national and… Continue Reading