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FDA Withdraws Restaurant Menu Labeling Guidance

Posted On: 1/26/2011

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vending, vending machine business, restaurant, FDA, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, menu labeling, food service, office coffee service, OCS

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced that it will withdraw its draft guidance on federal menu labeling regulations as it works on final rules.

The agency also told state and local authorities not to enforce the regulations until the final rule is published later this year.

The FDA published the draft guidelines on Aug. 25 and requested public comments before it issued its final regulations. The rules specified, among other things, menu items available for less than 60 days would not have to include nutrition data, takeout menus and online menus should include calorie information, and any food on display, whether self-service or accessed by the restaurant staff, must include calorie data postings.

FDA said that it recognized that the restaurant industry might require more guidance and time to comply with the provisions that went into effect when the bill was signed last year and that withdrawing the draft guidelines will minimize uncertainty and confusion.

The agency said it plans to complete the full rulemaking process before it takes any enforcement action. It expects to issue proposed regulations by March 23.