FDA guidance documents lose some of their power of direction

The Justice Department has changed its policy and "will no longer rely on (FDA) guidance documents to establish civil law infractions," says Food Safety News. The change follows a memo last November by Attorney General Jeff Sessions against codes of conduct that are issued by the government but are not the result of the formal rule-making process.

FDA, USDA pledge greater coordination on food safety

The leaders of the USDA and the FDA, which together oversee the U.S. food supply, signed a formal agreement at the White House to reduce regulatory overlap and improve the efficiency of the federal food safety system.

FDA sniffs at snortable chocolate

Nutrition professor and food author Marion Nestle says the FDA dropped the hammer on the promoters of “snortable Coco Loko ... cocoa powder infused with caffeine, ginkgo, taurine, and guarani.”

Sales of antibiotics for livestock drop for the first time, FDA data show

The amount of antibiotics sold for use in livestock in the United States has dropped for the first time since data collection began, according to FDA numbers. The data also show for the first time which types of meat animals are receiving the most antibiotics. (No paywall)

FDA proposes to revoke heart-healthy claim for soy protein

Nearly two decades after it agreed that consumption of soy protein reduced the risk of heart disease, the FDA proposed revocation of the so-called health claim because of new research that questions the relationship. It would be the first time the agency revoked any of the 12 health claims authorized since 1990.

‘Big Chicken’ shows government regulators were slow to act on ABX resistance

Antibiotic-resistant infections — everything from gastrointestinal illnesses to recurring urinary tract infections and staph — are among the most menacing issues in public health today, sickening 2 million people a year and killing at least 23,000, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. So perhaps it’s not surprising that government has begun to take steps to limit antibiotics in animal agriculture, where many of these infections arise, before they wreak further havoc in humans.

FDA delay of Nutrition Facts update is too long, says key senator

The Democratic leader on the Senate Health Committee wrote FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb to complain of an unreasonable delay in updating the Nutrition Facts label that appears on every package of food.

Massachusetts bakery gets no love from FDA

In a letter released Tuesday, the FDA instructed the Nashoba Brook Bakery in West Concord, Mass., that it needed to remove "love" from the list of ingredients for its granola, Bloomberg reports. “Your Nashoba Granola label lists ingredient ‘Love,’” the agency wrote in the letter, which was dated Sept. 22. “‘Love’ is not a common or usual name of an ingredient, and is considered to be intervening material because it is not part of the common or usual name of the ingredient.”

FDA delays Nutrition Facts update until 2020 to accommodate foodmakers

The FDA plans to delay the debut of the updated Nutrition Facts label to Jan. 1, 2020, some 43 months after the Obama administration unveiled the first overhaul of the label in 20 years. The agency said it acted "in response to the continued concern that companies and trade associations have shared with us regarding the time needed for implementation of the final rules."

Court agreement points to May 2018 start for menu labeling

The Food and Drug Administration will aim to begin enforcement around May 7, 2018, of the long-delayed requirement that chain restaurants, grocery stores, and convenience stores put calorie counts on their menus, according to an agreement reached in federal court. The target date is in line with a statement by FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb a month ago that the agency will be providing guidance to retailers so they will be ready to comply in May 2018.