The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently released guidance to assist food and dietary supplement companies on how to convert the previous units of measure for folate, niacin, vitamin A, vitamin D, and vitamin E to the new units required on the updated Nutrition Facts and Supplement Facts labels.  The guidance includes step by step instructions, conversion factors for each nutrient, and sample calculations for converting to the new units of measure.

Continue Reading FDA Releases Guidance on Convert Units of Measure for Certain Nutrients on Nutrition and Supplement Facts Labels

Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a proposed rule that would require health warnings on cigarette packages and advertising.  The warnings include color images depicting some of the lesser-known health risks of cigarette smoking.  This is FDA’s second attempt to require graphic warnings for cigarette packages and advertisements.

Continue Reading FDA Proposes New Health Warning for Cigarette Packages and Advertisements

On July 30, 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued its first Warning Letter to an importer for violations of the Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP) requirements at  21 C.F.R. Part 1, Subpart L (21 C.F.R. §§ 1.500 through 1.514).  The Warning Letter was issued to a U.S. importer related to imported tahini implicated in a multi-state Salmonella Concord outbreak in spring 2019.

Continue Reading FDA Issues First Warning Letter under FSVP Regulations

On May 9, 2019, we blogged about the challenge to the Minnesota farm winery statute. The statute allows Minnesota farms to bypass the traditional three-tier method of distributing alcoholic beverages and sell directly to retailers and consumers. To qualify as a farm winery, however, more than 50% of the grapes it uses must be grown in Minnesota. Two farm wineries argued that the statute violated the dormant commerce clause by discriminating against out-of-state grape growers.

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Avoiding Trademark Disputes in the Alcoholic Beverage Industry

In the first installment of our series on trademark disputes in the alcoholic beverage industry, we identified the risks facing industry participants on the branding front, regardless if they are “entrepreneurs” entering the market for the first time or established companies launching a new brand.  As we advised, the risks are significant and have the potential to completely derail your new brand.

Continue Reading Steer Clear with Your Beer Branding

We blogged on April 16, 2019, about the legal challenge to Missouri’s prohibition of characterizing plant- or cell-based products as “meat.” In response to plaintiffs’ motion for preliminary injunction, the state made no effort to defend the statute as written. Instead, it argued that the state Department of Agriculture had issued a statement that it would not refer any manufacturer for prosecution if the labeling clearly disclosed the origin of the product. That statement was not, however, binding on the county prosecutors whose duty it is to enforce the statute.

Continue Reading Meatless Meat Update

On April 10, 2019, we blogged about Minerva Dairy’s challenge to the Wisconsin butter grading statute. On June 24, 2019, the Supreme Court denied the petition for certiorari.  Given the strength of the dairy lobby in Wisconsin – until the mid-1960’s manufacturers of margarine were not permitted to compare its taste to butter – a legislative solution seems unlikely.

We blogged several times – most recently, on April 24, 2019 – about Iowa’s “ag-gag” law, which makes it a criminal offense to gain employment in or access to farm or ranch operations by means of false pretenses. The primary purpose of these kinds of statutes is to prevent undercover investigation of agricultural operations that engage in animal cruelty.

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We are approximately nine months into FDA’s animal feed and pet food facility inspections for compliance with the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Preventive Controls for Animal Food (PC) rule. With PC inspections starting for small businesses this Fall, there are a few lessons we have learned from the inspections that have occurred to date.

Continue Reading Is Your Animal Food Safety Plan up to Snuff?

On October 15, 2018, we blogged about Tennessee’s regulations on licensing for retail sales of alcoholic beverages. Tennessee requires residency within the state for two years in order to obtain an initial license. It requires residency for 10 consecutive years to obtain a renewal of the initial license.  But the initial license only runs for a year. The statute also requires that all officers, directors and shareholders of corporations to satisfy these residency requirements. The effect of this statute is to prohibit publicly traded corporations from obtaining a liquor license. It also gives a clear edge to Tennessee residents at the expense of out-of-staters.

Continue Reading Tennessee Alcohol Update