Kingston, NH, May 24, 2015 --(PR.com
)-- The final rules were published by the FDA last December and are effective December 1. They require the posting of calorie counts next to the name or price of all “standard” menu items as listed on a menu, menu board, countertop card or other display,” Mac Dermott says. “Standard” means any food that is offered on a daily basis.
“Menus and menu boards also must include a notice that nutrition information about all standards foods is available to customers on request,” he added. “The operator must have all its products analyzed and their calorie count and nutritional content by portion recorded.
“It’s likely that most food service contractors have, or soon will have a system in place to meet the December 1 deadline,” Mac Dermott said, “but its implementation on-site by the local manager and staff can be a concern to the host company, college or institution.”
For example, he explained, the contractor’s home office will have the information prepared for its meals, based on its standard recipes. That doesn’t mean the manager and chef at every location will follow the recipes exactly.
“The key to success of the program is proper training of the staffs at each operating unit and then active supervision and enforcement of procedures by the contractor,” Mac Dermott says. “That may be the Achilles’ heel in the program.”
The FDA says it will impose civil penalties or other enforcement action, including fines for violations. Clients of food service companies may wish to add an amendment to their contract stating the operator is solely responsible for implementation and enforcement of the new rules and for the consequences of any failure to comply, Mac Dermott suggests.
About Clarion Group
Clarion Group is an consulting firm that advises companies, professional firms, colleges and universities, independent schools and institutions in the management, operation and improvement of their in-house employee/student food services, catering, conference, lodging and related hospitality services throughout the U.S. and Canada.
For information, contact:
Tom Mac Dermott, FCSI, President
PO Box 158, Kingston, NH 03848-0158
603/642-8011 or TWM@clariongp.com