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The One Year Compliance Clock Starts for FDA Guidance on Menu Labeling



The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced its final guidelines for the industry regarding menu labeling, A Labeling Guide for Restaurants and Retail Establishments Selling Away-From-Home Foods – Part II (Menu Labeling Requirements in Accordance with 21 CFR 101.11). The menu labeling final rule will begin to be enforced by the FDA one year after the Notice of Availability (NOA) is published by the Federal Register.

The menu labeling rule, part of the Affordable Care Act of 2010, requires calorie counts on menu and menu boards at restaurants with 20 or more locations.  According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) 2012 survey results show 80 percent of Americans support calorie labeling at chain restaurants.

“When Americans decide to dine out, they need to know what’s in their food. This final guidance will help them make healthy choices, and hopefully, satisfy the restaurant industry’s craving for how to best comply with the 2014 menu labeling requirements,” said American Heart Association CEO, Nancy Brown. “We are pleased that this guidance has been released and that it starts the countdown clock for restaurants to comply within one year.

We encourage any food establishment that hasn’t already completed the necessary work to fulfill these requirements to do so as quickly as possible, so that Americans are equipped to make the food choices that will help them build healthier lives free of heart disease and stroke.” 

Learn more about the FDA’s final guidance here.