Food Business News - Apr 13, 2010 - (Page 1)

April 13, 2010 FOODBUSINESS NEWS NEWS, MARKETS AND ANALYSIS FOR THE FOOD PROCESSING INDUSTRY Dean Foods antitrust case moves forward MILWAUKEE - The U.S. Department of Justice's antitrust case against Dean Foods Co. will go forward, according to the ruling of J.P. Stadtmueller, U.S. District Court Judge for the Eastern District of Wisconsin. Dean Foods had filed a motion to dismiss the case. In the decision, Judge Stadtmueller criticized the Department of Justice's case, saying it lacked "specificity in content associated with the underlying complaint." But the judge found the shortcomings not to be sufficient enough to warrant dismissal. On Jan. 22, the D.O.J., in conjunction with several states attorneys general, filed Continued on Page 21 F.D.A. inspected 24% of food facilities in 2008 WASHINGTON - Through 2008, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration was inspecting fewer than a quarter of food facilities each year, and 56% of food facilities had gone five or more years without inspection, according to a recent report from the Department of Health and Human Services' inspector general. The report prompted a call by Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa to pass food safety legislation. Subsequent to 2008, federal budget allocations have allowed for the hiring of more inspectors and inspection of facilities. Between fiscal years 2004 and 2008, the F.D.A. inspected annually an average of 24% of the food facilities subject to inspection, and there are no specific guidelines that dictate the frequency Continued on Page 20 Story on Page 37 Front-of-package peril and potential Confused consumers, F.D.A. scrutiny are challenges CHICAGO - Food and beverage manufacturers should know both opportunity and risk exist when making claims on the front of packages, according to speakers at Wellness 10 presented by the Institute of Food Technologists March 24-25 in Chicago. Some claims may draw unwanted attention from a more active Food and Drug Administration while too many claims may clutter the front of a package and confuse consumers. Tony Pavel, a partner with K&L Gates L.P., spoke about a more active F.D.A. in his March 25 presentation. "You've got a lawyer in the morning, and a lawyer with bad news," he told the audience. "Sorry." Mr. Pavel said the warning letters recently sent to 17 companies about claims on the front of packages show how the F.D.A. is taking a harder line into claims. The F.D.A. has wide latitude in accusing companies of misbranding, Mr. Pavel said. The warning letters covered such issues as nutrient content claims on food for infants, trans-fat claims for products actually high in saturated fats, food products claiming to treat or mitigate diseases, and juice products with multiple ingredients being labeled as single juice products. In the letters the F.D.A. expressed concern that label claims are not doing enough to help consumers distinguish healthy food choices from less healthy choices. "Balance is a key issue that the agency is Continued on Page 33

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Food Business News - Apr 13, 2010


Food Business News - Apr 13, 2010