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U.S. Pork Regains Entry to Argentina for First Time Since 1992

Argentina has blocked imports of American pork since 1992, citing animal health concerns. On August 17, 2017, the White House announced that the United States and Argentina have agreed to terms that will allow U.S. pork to enter the Argentine market for the first time since 1992.  The agreement follows an August 15, 2017 meeting … Continue Reading

CFIA Launches DNA-based Projects to Boost Fruit Plant Trade

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) oversees food safety, animal health and plant health regulatory programs in Canada. The CFIA works with federal, provincial and territorial science organizations, industry, universities and other partners across Canada to support and develop science that contributes to evidence-based decisions that aim to protect Canada’s food, animal and plant resources. With specific regard … Continue Reading

FDA Clarifies Sanitary Transportation Rule Waiver for Retail Food Establishments

As previously covered on this blog, on April 6, 2016, FDA published a final rule to implement sanitary food transportation requirements under the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).  Click here for a complete copy of the final rule.  Click here for an FDA fact sheet summarizing the final rule, and click here for our summary of the rule and its … Continue Reading

FDA Approves New Source of Omega-6 Fatty Acids for Dog Food

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) announced the approval of a variety of bioengineered safflower as a source of omega-6 fatty acids in dry adult dog food. The final rule amends Title 21 Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.) Part 573 (“Food Additives Permitted in Food and Drinking Water of Animals”) … Continue Reading

FDA Delays Preventive Controls Inspections for Large Animal Food Facilities

The second major compliance dates are coming up for the Preventive Controls for Animal Food Rule under FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). On September 18, 2017, larger animal food facilities must comply with preventive controls requirements mandated by FSMA. These facilities had to meet Current Good Manufacturing Practice (CGMP) requirements by September 2016. As … Continue Reading

FDA Will Exercise Enforcement Discretion for the Use and Labeling of “Ultrafiltered Milk” in Certain Cheeses and Cheese Products

Mechanical filtration technologies available for milk processing include ultrafiltration.  Ultrafiltered milk (UF Milk) is milk that is mechanically filtered via semipermeable membranes to partially remove water, lactose, minerals, and water-soluble vitamins without altering the “casein to whey protein” ratio of the milk and resulting in a liquid product. FDA’s regulations specify the standards of identity … Continue Reading

New Final Rule Strengthens USDA Enforcement of COOL Requirements

Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) requirements at 7 CFR Part 60 and 7 CFR Part 65 require retailers to notify their customers of the country of origin of covered commodities, which include muscle cut and ground lamb, goat, and chicken; wild and farm-raised fish and shellfish; fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables; peanuts, pecans, and macadamia nuts; and … Continue Reading

FDA Issues Guidances on Exemptions from FSMA Rules

As previously reported on this blog, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued final rules to implement the hazard analysis and risk-based preventive control (HARPC) provisions under the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) on September 10, 2015. Prior to issuing the FSMA regulations, FDA established: A Seafood Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) … Continue Reading

Canadian Study Identifies Off-Label Meat in 1 in 5 Sausages

Funded by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), University of Guelph researchers have conducted the first-ever Canadian study examining sausage mislabeling. The study examined 100 sausages that were labeled as containing just one ingredient — beef, pork, chicken or turkey. Published on July 31, 2017 in Food Control, the study found cross-species contamination of meat ingredients in … Continue Reading

New Poll Shows Consumer Confusion Abounds Over Date labels

As previously covered on this blog, the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) and the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) launched an initiative this past February to streamline and standardize the wording accompanying the date labels on packages to offer greater clarity regarding the quality and safety of products.  The new voluntary initiative calls for the use of just … Continue Reading

House Committee Advances Changes to Menu Labeling Law

Over the past several years, FDA has been in the process of implementing menu labeling provisions added to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act by the Affordable Care Act. Under the new requirements, restaurants or similar retail food establishments (in chains of 20 or more locations doing business under the same name and selling substantially similar … Continue Reading

Health Canada Proposes Updates to Canada’s Food Guide

Pursuant to its mandate under the Food and Drugs Act, Health Canada is responsible for setting safety and nutritional quality standards for all foods sold in Canada.  Health Canada achieves this goal by setting standards under the Food and Drug Regulations which are enforced by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. On October 24, 2016, Canada’s … Continue Reading

Illinois Cook County Soda Tax Becomes Effective Aug. 2

As previously reported on this blog, a Cook County Ordinance that imposes a $0.01 per ounce tax on the retail sale of sweetened beverage was temporarily blocked after the Illinois Retail Merchants Association and others filed a lawsuit to block the tax. On July 28, 2017, Cook County Circuit Judge Daniel Kubasiak dissolved the temporary restraining … Continue Reading

GM Labeling Rule Update – USDA Extends Deadline for Stakeholder Input

As previously reported on this blog, legislation requiring labeling of genetically modified (GM) foods and food ingredients was signed into law on July 29, 2016.  This law directs the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to develop regulations and standards to create mandatory disclosure requirements for bio-engineered foods by July 2018.  Under the new law, food companies would have three … Continue Reading

USDA Nutrition Facts Rule Placed on “Inactive” List

On January 19, 2017, USDA’s Food Safety & Inspection Service (FSIS) released a proposed rule to revise its nutrition labeling requirements for meat and poultry products to reflect current scientific research and dietary recommendations. FSIS indicates that the changes parallel FDA’s recently revised nutrition labeling requirements (see our previous blog coverage regarding FDA’s revised nutrition facts requirements here).  … Continue Reading

Senators Press for Reopening of China to U.S. Poultry

As previously covered on this blog, as part of a deal to resume U.S. beef exports to China, the U.S. pledged that it would remove obstacles to importing cooked Chinese poultry meat.  In support of this pledge, on June 16, 2017, USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) published a proposed rule (82 FR 27625) amending its inspection regulations to … Continue Reading

GE Salmon Labeling Mandate Included in Senate Appropriations Bill

As previously reported on this blog, Senate Bill 764, which requires the labeling of genetically modified (GM) foods and food ingredients, was signed into law on July 29, 2016. The National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Law directs the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to develop regulations and standards to create mandatory disclosure requirements for bio-engineered foods by July 2018. Under the … Continue Reading

FDA Authorizes Qualified Health Claim for Macadamia Nuts

A health claim characterizes the relationship between a substance and its ability to reduce the risk of a disease or health-related condition (see 21 CFR 101.14).  A health claim must contain the elements of a substance and a disease or health-related condition.  In addition, health claims are limited to claims about disease risk reduction, and … Continue Reading

Pew Study Assesses Food Safety Efforts from Farm to Fork

A Pew Charitable Trusts study released this month examines “preharvest” food safety control measures currently used on farms and feedlots and concludes that efforts to reduce contamination of meat and poultry products from harmful pathogens requires a comprehensive “farm to fork” approach. The study specifically examined food safety control measures designed to limit exposure on … Continue Reading

FSMA Funds 2017: More Green for Greens

FDA announces FSMA funds to support states’ continued implementation of the produce safety rule. The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) was designed to update and strengthen FDA’s risk-based approach to the oversight of food safety.  The produce safety rule – which establishes science-based minimum standards for the safe growing, harvesting, packing and holding of fruits … Continue Reading

BSE Case in AL Prompts S. Korea to Boost Quarantine Checks of U.S. Beef

Earlier this week, USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced an atypical case of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), a neurologic disease of cattle, in an eleven-year old cow in Alabama (AL).  APHIS reports that this animal never entered slaughter channels and at no time presented a risk to the food supply, or to … Continue Reading

Philly Soda Tax Opponents Appeal To PA Supreme Court

As previously covered on this blog, on June 16, 2016, the Philadelphia city council voted 13-4 to approve a 1.5-cent-per-ounce tax on sugar-sweetened beverages.  The tax – which took effect on January 1, 2017 – is levied on distributors and covers a variety of beverages, including soda and diet soda, non-100% fruit drinks; sports drinks; flavored water; energy drinks; … Continue Reading

CSPI Refiles Lawsuit Alleging Coca-Cola and ABA Deceived Consumers on Health Risks

As background, on January 4, 2017, the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), a consumer-advocacy group, filed a complaint claiming that Coca-Cola and the American Beverage Association (ABA) misled consumers regarding the health risks of consuming sugary drinks such as soda.  The lawsuit specifically takes issue with Coca-Cola and the ABA’s emphasis on “calories in, calories … Continue Reading