A Food and Beverage Law Blog
Thursday, January 23, 2014

The FDA’s highly anticipated proposed rules regarding menu labeling are set for release just around the corner, and businesses and elected officials are already reacting.

The proposed rules apply to chain restaurants, retail food establishments, and vending machines with 20 or more locations and require that menus be labeled with caloric information and that certain nutritional information be made readily available to patrons.

While some chain retailers applaud the idea of nationwide uniform labeling requirements for the sake of ease, others are concerned about the cost and efficacy of the proposed rules.

Domino’s CEO J. Patrick Doyle has been a dissonant voice in the debate since 2011.  Maine’s Senator Angus King is another critic, and joining him are both members of the Senate and House that have sponsored S. 1756 and H.R. 1249 , bills aimed at amending the FD&C Act.  Congresswoman Renee Ellmers, who supports the amendment, claims that the FDA’s proposed “one-size-fits-all regulation” is burdensome on the industry.  Specifically, the bills permit remote-access to nutritional information for certain entities and provide a comprehensive definition for the “reasonable basis” standard that is used in the proposed rules but that does not offer substantive guidance for the industry.

Stay tuned to Bryan Cave’s Food & Beverage Law Digest for more updates and a break down of how the rules could impact your business.