Category: Legislation and Regulation

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Egg Safety Rule Now Effective for Midsized Facilities

Egg-associated illness caused by Salmonella has long been recognized as a serious public health problem. Specifically, Salmonella Enteritidis, a bacterium commonly found inside shell eggs that appear normal, continues to be one of the leading bacterial causes of foodborne illness in the United States. These eggs primarily become contaminated on the farm because of infection … Continue Reading

USDA Launches New Online Tool for Faster Label Review

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is the primary agency charged with regulating the nation’s supply of meat, poultry, and egg products. Besides ensuring the safety and wholesomeness of those products, FSIS is also charged with the important function of reviewing the accuracy of all meat, poultry, and egg product … Continue Reading

The Best Thing. Ever.

In the conclusion to Aaron Bobrow-Strain’s White Bread: A Social History of the Store-Bought Loaf, he describes how he, a home bread baker, captures the microbes for his homemade sourdough. It’s not what we’d call hygienic, but it also apparently makes a delicious bread. Bobrow-Strain’s own behavior is really what tells you his conclusion: where bread is concerned, everything … Continue Reading

FSIS Proposes New Procedures to Improve Traceability

Recently, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) issued a notice announcing new procedures that it intends to implement when FSIS or other Federal or State agencies find a presumptive positive for Escherichia coli (E. coli) O157:H7 in raw ground beef. The impetus behind these new procedures was to improve … Continue Reading

FSIS’ New Rule on Poultry Inspection Remains Open for Comment

Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a press release indicating that the agency’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) was proposing a new rule to modernize young chicken and turkey slaughter inspection. Specifically, the rule intends to expand the use of the flexible, more efficient, fully integrated meat and poultry inspection … Continue Reading

FSIS Final Rule Imposes New Labeling Requirements for Meat and Poultry Products

A new U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection (FSIS) rule, which was originally announced in a Federal Register notice published on December 29, 2010, will require nutrition labeling on the major cuts of single-ingredient, raw meat and poultry products and ground or chopped meat and poultry products unless one of several exemptions applies. … Continue Reading

UCL Class Actions in California Expand Beyond “All Natural” Claims

The “All Natural” class action litigation in California has continued into 2012, as expected.  The claims in California are being filed under California’s consumer-friendly unfair competition law (or UCL), which is codified in sections 17200 and 17500 of the California Business & Professions Code, and the Consumer Legal Remedies Act (CLRA). Given the costs and … Continue Reading

FDA Issues Interim Regulation and Input on Document Inspection Requirements under FSMA

Effective March 1, 2012, the FDA implemented an Interim Final Rule on the “Establishment, Maintenance, and Availability of Records” under the Food Safety Modernization Act, “FSMA”. The FSMA statute among other new provisions, expanded the FDA’s authority to access and demand records from relating to the specific suspect article of food records, to include those relating … Continue Reading

FSMA And Prop 65 At The GMA Conference

Attorneys Lee N. Smith and Melissa A. Jones participated in the GMA 2012 Food Claims and Litigation Conference in Dana Point.  Mr. Smith (his real name) spoke on the effect of the New Food Safety Modernization Act and its potential impact on litigation, and Ms. Jones (her real name) and Mr. Smith also presented an overview of Proposition … Continue Reading

New Bill To Set Arsenic And Lead Limits In Juice

United States House Representative, Frank Pallone, Jr. introduced H.R. 3984 on Wednesday that would set arsenic and lead limits in juice. The "Arsenic Prevention and Protection from Lead Exposure in Juice Act of 2012," otherwise known as the "APPLE Juice Act of 2012" is in direct response to Consumer Reports investigations.  The investigative reports found levels of arsenic and … Continue Reading

Upcoming Events

On December 8, 2011 I participated in a webinar organized by the Strafford Publication Group. In conjunction with Jonathan Cohen from the Gilbert firm and Joseph Bottiglieri with Bonner Kiernan Trebach & Crociata LLP, we presented Food Safety Claims: Products Liability Issues on the new requirements under the Food Safety Modernization Act. Nicole Hancock of … Continue Reading

FDA Creates The Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance (FSPCA) To Develop Training Courses And Materials For Prevention Of Contamination

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in cooperation with the Illinois Institute of Technology’s Institute for Food Safety and Health (IIT IFSH) created the Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance (FSPCA) to develop materials to will help the industry comply with the new preventive control rules. The Alliance is composed of members from the FDA, … Continue Reading

“All Natural” Class Action Litigation in California: What’s in Store for 2012?

California litigators Tom Woods and Melissa Jones have prepared a Litigation Legal Alert on "All Natural" class action litigation in California and what to expect in 2012.  The Alert, which is linked above, provides background information regarding "All Natural" class action litigation in California.  It also discusses why the authors believe that class action litigation in this area … Continue Reading

Here’s a Pop Quiz

You can’t Google this and you can’t refer to anything but your own common sense: Is the following statement true or false? The regular consumption of significant amounts of water can reduce the risk of development of dehydration and of concomitant decrease of performance. I’ll be back with the "answer" tomorrow.… Continue Reading

Green Chemistry Is Back

The Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) released new informal draft regulations whose stated purpose is:  "to make safer consumer products ….widespread in California…[and]…. provide more protection against toxic chemicals in products on store shelves, while creating market opportunities for industry."    The draft released on October 31, 2011, creates regulations identifying consumer products that contain … Continue Reading

No Slow Down to Class Action Lawsuits in California Regarding Food Labeling and Marketing

By California litigators Tom Woods and Melissa Jones Consumer class action plaintiffs remain very active in California, with cases continuing to be filed against food manufacturers and suppliers regarding alleged misleading labeling and marketing claims. Just this week, plaintiffs filed a class action lawsuit against Trader Joe’s alleging that it falsely advertised and sold cookies … Continue Reading

New Retail Food Action Plan

In its latest step to increase the safety of the American food supply, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a Retail Food Safety Action Plan that includes several measures to help assure the safety of food sold in stores, restaurants, schools, and other foodservice operations. In support of the Action Plan, FDA also … Continue Reading
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