FDA clarifies its menu labeling clarification

chipotle menu board

After rousing confusion last week about when chain restaurants would be required to meet menu disclosure regulations, the Food and Drug Administration moved quickly on Friday to alleviate the anxiety, saying May 5 is the day.

The announcement was the latest in a patter of clarifications last week on restaurants’ responsibilities under the rules, which are part of the Affordable Care Act. On Tuesday, Nov. 29, the FDA said qualifying restaurants would need to begin revealing the nutritional content of menu items two days later, on Dec. 1. But, simultaneously, it specified that enforcement would not start until May 5.

After representatives of the foodservice industry asked for a clarification on the clarification, the FDA said late on Friday that restaurants should regard May 5 as the deadline for meeting their requirements under the new rule.

“The National Restaurant Association applauds the FDA for issuing this important clarification regarding menu labeling,” Cicely Simpson, EVP of government affairs and policy for the association, said Friday in a statement. “Today’s announcement by the FDA gives the foodservice industry the time it needs to empower their customers to make the best choices for themselves.”


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