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sugar cane

Grocery Manufacturers Association, Others Say 2009 FDA Guidance On Use Of the Term “Evaporated Cane Juice” Has Caused Chaos In Food Industry

By Stefanie Jill Fogel and Mary B. Langowski In 2009, the FDA told manufacturers not to use the term “evaporated cane juice” on the grounds that the term could be used to conceal the fact that a product contains added sugar. The Grocery Manufacturers Association and several industry...

wheat field

FDA Issues Guidance on Submission of Petitions and Notifications for Exemption from Allergen Labeling

Last month the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released draft guidance for industry with instructions on how to obtain a food allergen labeling exemption through submission of a petition or notification to FDA.[1] The Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act of 2004 (FACLPA) amended the...

food label made in USA certified natural

Appeals Court Hears Arguments Anew On Country-Of-Origin Labeling

By Stefanie Jill Fogel and Mary B. Langowski On May 19, the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit, sitting en banc, heard arguments in a case brought by the meat industry challenging COOL as a violation of free speech under the First Amendment. In March, a panel of that court denied the meat industry’s...

Judge Permits Suit Against Whole Foods Over “All Natural” Claim To Proceed

By Stefanie Jill Fogel and Mary B. Langowski A federal judge in California has given the go-ahead for most claims in a lawsuit against Whole Foods Market based on the retailer’s use of the term “all natural” to proceed. The suit, filed in November 2013, accuses Whole Foods of misleadingly...

"Battle of the Experts" Not Sufficient to Establish Violation of State Consumer Protection Acts

In the increasingly litigious area of food labeling claims, manufacturers received a little help in a recent decision from a federal judge in Maryland, [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ]. Reviewing a consumer’s assertion that the claimed benefit for a dietary supplement had...

Public Meeting on Proposed Rules to Change Nutrition Facts Label and Serving Sizes

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) held a public meeting on June 26, 2014 to discuss the proposed rules to revise the Nutrition Facts label and serving sizes.[1] The meeting featured an overview of the proposed rules by FDA, a panel on stakeholder perspectives with representatives from trade associations...

FSIS Proposes New Recordkeeping Requirements for Ground Beef Processors & Retailers

USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) plans to propose a rule, in the coming days, that imposes new recordkeeping requirements on ground beef processor establishments and retail facilities. If adopted, this proposed rule, [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], would...

baby eating baby food

tomatoes

Judge Finds No “Taking” Of Property in FDA Tomato Warning

By Stefanie Jill Fogel In 2008, the FDA issued a warning that tomatoes from Texas and New Mexico might be contaminated with salmonella, but did not prohibit their sale. In the wake of plummeting tomato sales, a group of growers sued the US government for compensation for a regulatory taking. On September...

calories nutrition label fast food

FDA Issues Two Final Rules to Help Consumers Keep Track of Calories

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently finalized two rules requiring that calorie information be listed on menus and menu boards in chain restaurants and similar retail food establishments, as well as on certain vending machines. In announcing the finalization of the two rules, FDA Commissioner...

Food Safety Audit Firms May be Held Liable for Consumer Injuries Resulting from Negligent Inspections

A food safety audit firm can be held to answer in court for claims that its negligence in performing an audit led to the sale of contaminated food and the subsequent injury, or death, of a consumer of that food. If ultimately found liable, the food safety audit firm would be required to pay damages to...

Vermont Attorney General's Office Releases Draft Regulations to Implement Genetically Engineered Food Labeling Law

Vermont’s Office of the Attorney General has published draft regulations intended to implement the already enacted Vermont Genetically Engineered (GE) food labeling law. Vermont’s GE Labeling Law Vermont’s Act 120, [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], the measure...

Contaminated Cheese and Chicken

One person dies from listeria linked to soft cheeses. Two people have been hospitalized and one has died in an ongoing listeria outbreak purportedly linked to Hispanic-style soft cheeses. The three cases were all reported in Washington state. The cheeses allegedly involved, made by Yakima, Washington...

Navigating FDA and USDA Reporting/Notification Requirements for Adulterated and Misbranded Food

When incidents of adulterated or misbranded food arise that trigger a need to report to or notify a federal agency, food companies face a number of somewhat confusing, and not always congruent, requirements. Both the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food...

Plaintiffs Challenging Food Labels May Be Required to Conduct Expensive Consumer Perception Surveys to Demonstrate Deception

A federal judge in California recently made it more difficult for plaintiffs to demonstrate that food labels are misleading. The judge's ruling points to the need for consumer perception surveys to demonstrate that consumers were misled by allegedly false food labels. Consumer perception surveys...

How You Say It Makes a Difference - California False Advertising Claims Attacking "No Trans Fat" Labeling Gain Traction as Ninth Circuit Rejects Preemption Arguments

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held, in relevant part, that a consumer states a valid claim for false advertising when a company claims "No Trans Fats" for a product which has less than 0.5 grams of trans fats per serving (but more than 0 grams) even though Food and...

No trans fat

FDA Announces Plan to Streamline Animal Food Regulation

On March 27, 2015, FDA announced a strategy to establish ingredient definitions and standards for animal food. The goal of FDA’s strategy is to promote consistency in the Agency’s regulatory review and clearance of animal food ingredients. Currently, ingredients used in animal feed and...

California Appellate Court Holds That Reproductive Toxicants Can Be Averaged Over Time When Determining Exposure Under Proposition 65

In Environmental Law Foundation (ELF) v. Beech-Nut Nutrition Corp. , ( court opinion ), the California Court of Appeal for the First Appellate District held, [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], that in appropriate circumstances, exposures to reproductive toxicants may be averaged...

China Passes Sweeping Amendment to Food Safety Law: The Most Stringent To Date

On April 25, 2015, after two rounds of comment solicitation and revision in 2013 and 2014, the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress of China passed the amended Food Safety Law (“Law”).[1] The Law, which will enter into force on October 1, 2015, is considered the most stringent...