Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the FDA has issued several temporary guidelines concerning current regulations and associated actions. Among these, the FDA is offering leniency to restaurants who have purchased ingredients they can no longer use, and instead wish to sell to their customers. To facilitate this, the FDA released a Guidance for Industry: Temporary Policy Regarding Nutrition Labeling of Certain Packaged Food During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency.
This document states that until otherwise specified, restaurants may sell packaged foods directly to customers in the US. The FDA will not intervene if these products lack a nutritional label, as long as the product does not make any nutrition claims (e.g. low fat). The label must still provide the following information:
- A statement of identity
- An ingredient statement
- Name & place of food manufacturer, packer, or distributor
- Net quantity of the contents
- Allergen information complying with Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act.
The FDA hopes that this will satiate demand for products which sell out quickly in supermarkets. To further ease the situation, the FDA also allows manufacturers to sell packaged products which are labelled for restaurants to consumers. Manufacturers are also permitted to continue producing these foods if retail packaging with the relevant labels are unavailable.
To minimize loss of food that cannot be sold FDA also released a Fact Sheet on diverting human food to animal food use.
This new rule is effective immediately, with the FDA reserving the right to revoke it at any time.
Tentamus Labelling provides full labeling services, ranging from testing for a product’s nutrients, to making sure all legal requirements are fulfilled on the label. Do you need help with labelling your product? Get in touch:
Kaitlyn Gerhart, Ph.D.