Following on the recent issuance of a final rule updating reference amounts customarily consumed (RACCs) for various foods, FDA has issued a Request for Information (RFI) on the appropriate RACCs for flavored nut butter spreads.

  • As previously covered on this blog, earlier this year, FDA issued a final rule related to various aspects of the serving size regulations, including updates to RACCs for previously established product categories and the creation of RACCs for new products and product categories.  This final rule became effective on July 26, 2016.  The compliance date is July 26, 2018 for manufacturers with $10 million or more in annual food sales, and July 26, 2019 for manufacturers with <$10 million in annual food sales.
  • On November 2, 2016, FDA issued a request for information (RFI) to invite comments, data and other relevant information on the appropriate RACC and product category for flavored nut butter spreads (e.g., cocoa, cookie, and coffee flavored), as well as products that can be used to fill cupcakes and other desserts.  The Agency notes that it has issued this RFI in response to:
  1. A comment received on the proposed version of the final rule discussed above.  This comment requests that FDA amend the serving size regulations to establish a RACC and product category for cupcake fillings.  In the preamble to the final rule, the Agency responded to the comment by noting that it intended to establish a RACC for cupcake fillings, as well as for other types of cake or pastry fillings, in a future rulemaking.  The RFI issued on November 2, 2016 represents the first step in the Agency’s evaluation of the appropriate RACC and product category for products used as a filling for cupcakes and other desserts; and
  2. A citizen petition asking that FDA either: (a) issue guidance recognizing that “nut cocoa-based spreads” fall within the “Honey, jams, jellies, fruit butter, molasses” category for the purposes of RACC determination, or (b) amend the current regulation relating to RACCs to establish a new RACC category for “nut cocoa-based spreads” with a RACC of 1 tablespoon.
  • FDA will be accepting comments on the RFI through January 3, 2017.