January 29, 2015
- The New Yorker has an excellent article highlighting gaps in food safety regulation and enforcement powers — gaps that continue to create cases for attorney (and adjunct professor in the University of Arkansas School of Law’s LLM Program in Agricultural and Food Law) Bill Marler who represents victims of foodborne illnesses.
- Possibly addressing the gaps discussed in The New Yorker article, new legislation has been introduced in Congress to create a single federal food safety agency, as Food Safety News reports.
- Food Safety News also reports on Wyoming’s Food Freedom Bill, which would exempt transactions directly between food producers and “informed end consumers” from state regulation and provides that such consumers assume the risk of injury from consuming the food.
- The American Academy of Pediatrics released a study on Physical Activity Calorie Equivalent (PACE) labeling on menu items to encourage parents to make smarter choices when choosing food for their children at restaurants, which prompted a quick blog post from us.
- The Columbia Missourian has a great story on Cody Waters, an Iraq War veteran now making the transition into farming.
- The Wall Street Journal reports on rising egg prices in California, attributing the rise to changes to the new welfare standards for egg laying hens that took effect this year.
- Don Thompson, CEO of McDonald’s, well step down from his post effective March 1. Recall that last November, Fortune Magazine ran a fantastic piece on the company’s recent decline and described a couple of Thompson’s key initiatives intended to get McDonald’s back on its feet. Those initiatives included the ability to use an in-store kiosk to build your own burger, or hiring Mythbusters guy Grant Imahara to tour a meat processing facility with a camera crew. We noted at the time that it seemed as though some of the better criticisms in the Fortune piece came from “former employees” of the company, who said things like “The problem is the truth. They are a mass feeder” and “McDonald’s has forgotten over the past decade that the consumer makes emotional decisions.”
- A federal bill introduced to create a single federal food safety agency, sponsored by Senator Richard Durbin and Congresswoman Rose DeLauro. The bill is called the Safe Food Act of 2015.
- Jdsupra.com reports on the difficulties plaintiffs are having in pursuit of their “all natural” claims litigation. Read the whole thing, but if the details are a bit too geeky for you, the short of it is, “all natural” claims cases are not easy money for plaintiff’s law firms.