Michelle Gillette

Michelle Gillette

Mintz Levin

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U.S. House Passes GMO Labeling Legislation

Today the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015 passed the House, in a vote of 275 to 150 (more information here). Still a hot-button issue, opposition to the Act is emotionally charged, with those opposed to the bill...more

7/24/2015 - All Natural FDA Food Labeling Food Safety GMO Natural Products Pending Legislation Preemption USDA

The Patchwork Solidifies: GMO Bill Moves Forward in the House

The proposed Federal regulation of GMOs is proceeding. Following the White House’s recent action on GMOs, Representative Pompeo’s “Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act” (H.R. 1599) was passed by the House Agriculture Committee...more

7/21/2015 - All Natural Biotechnology Department of Agriculture Farms FDA Food Labeling Food Manufacturers Food Safety GMO Natural Products Pending Legislation USDA

Hidden Costs of Common Beauty Treatments?

The “toxic trio” is a foreboding name some associate with common and seemingly innocuous manicures and pedicures. Salon workers suffer higher-than-average rates of birth defects, miscarriages, cancers, and skin afflictions...more

7/17/2015 - Birth Defects Cancer Class Action Cosmetics FDA Formaldehyde Labeling Manufacturers Miscarriages Pending Legislation Personal Care Products Product Labels Product Safety Labels Toxic Chemicals Toxic Exposure Workplace Hazards

Big Win for Anti-GMO Groups as Federal Judge Upholds Jackson County GMO Ban

On Friday, Federal Magistrate Judge Mark D. Clarke partially dismissed a lawsuit brought by commercial alfalfa farmers seeking to overturn a Jackson County ordinance that banned the use of GMO seed stock (“It is a county...more

6/3/2015 - Farms Genetically Engineered Seed GMO GMO Bans Takings Takings Clause

Are Cosmetics Gaining Higher Congressional and FDA Scrutiny?

Currently, FDA regulates cosmetics to ensure they are not adulterated or misbranded, but does not have the authority to order cosmetic recalls or require adverse event reporting. Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Susan...more

5/18/2015 - Cosmetics FDA FDCA Manufacturers Personal Care Products Product Recalls

A Clean Slate? California Bill Is Latest Attempt to Legislate Labeling Requirements for Cleaning Products

Another potentially meaningful development in legislation affecting consumer products companies: on February 25, a California legislator introduced a bill, AB 708, that would require manufacturers, distributors and retailers...more

3/12/2015 - Chemicals Distributors Labeling Manufacturers Product Labels Proposed Legislation Retailers

And the Beat Goes On: NY State Assembly to Vote on GMO Labeling Law

Coming on the heels of the reintroduction of the Genetically Engineered Food Right-to-Know Act, on March 3, 2015, the New York State Assembly Committee on Consumer Affairs and Protection voted 9 to 6, with one abstention, to...more

3/6/2015 - Farms Food Labeling GMO Grocery Stores Labeling New Legislation USDA

No Representation Without Substantiation? What POM Wonderful v. FTC Means for Consumer Class Actions

POM Wonderful vs. FTC in DC Court of AppealsIn this first post of a two-part series, we take a closer look at last Friday’s decision in POM Wonderful v. FTC by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, which has...more

2/6/2015 - Class Action Consumer Fraud False Advertising First Amendment FTC POM Wonderful Prior Substantiation Doctrine RCT Scientific Evidence

Jobs-ed: New Class Action Pulls Apple into California’s “Food Court”

In our continuing efforts to highlight litigation trends that affect consumer product companies, we often focus on class actions brought in California and, especially, its federal Northern District. The Northern District of...more

1/9/2015 - Advertising Apple Class Action False Advertising iPhone Manufacturers Slack Fill Software Technology

Update: Syngenta Litigation Regarding GMO Corn

In a recent post, we detailed lawsuits filed by corn exporters, farmers, and other stakeholders against Syngenta Corp. regarding its marketing of corn which contains genetically modified (“GMO”) traits that have not been...more

12/19/2014 - China Class Action Exports Food Manufacturers GMO Multidistrict Litigation Syngenta

More GMO Woes: Another Corn Exporter Sues Syngenta for its Failure to Isolate its GMO Corn

Last month, Archer Daniels Midland Co. (“ADM”) joined a slew of corn exporters and other stakeholders who have sued Syngenta based on allegations that China rejected these exporters’ products because Syngenta’s genetically...more

12/9/2014 - Archer Daniels China Exports Food Manufacturers Genetically Engineered Seed GMO Popular Syngenta

Class Action Defense Counsel adding ‘The Pick Off’ to Their Playbooks

In recent years, we’ve noticed a new maneuver that class-action defense counsel have increasingly added to their playbooks: The Pick Off. This is how the play is run: Offer the named plaintiff(s) full relief through a Rule...more

11/24/2014 - Class Action Federal Rules of Civil Procedure Genesis Healthcare Corp. v. Symczyk Rule 68 Whole Foods

November Elections Impact the Food & Beverage Industry (Part 1)

Bids to require mandatory labeling of foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMO) were voted down in Colorado and Oregon on Tuesday. Colorado voters rejected Proposition 105, with nearly 70% of voters saying no;...more

11/7/2014 - Election Results Food Labeling Food Manufacturers GMO

FDA and the Center for Food Safety Reach Settlement Regarding FDA’s GRAS Rule

On October 20, 2014, FDA reached a settlement with the Center for Food Safety (“CFS”) in litigation pending in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. This litigation is related to FDA’s rule for food additives...more

10/31/2014 - FDA Food Manufacturers Food Safety

The Incredible Shrinking Red Bull Refund: How Should Courts Verify Class Membership?

A recent class action settlement has brought fresh attention to two age-old questions. The first: does Red Bull actually give you wings? The second: how carefully should courts screen out bogus claimants from proposed classes...more

10/17/2014 - Advertising Class Action Class Member Compensation Class Members False Advertising Food Labeling Red Bull Settlement Unidentified Class Members

FDA Announces More Changes to FSMA Implementation Rules

On September 19, 2014, FDA announced potential changes to four rules that the agency proposed in 2013 to implement the Food Safety and Modernization Act (“FSMA”). FSMA was signed into law in January 2011 in response to many...more

10/7/2014 - FDA Food Manufacturers Food Safety FSMA Public Comment Public Meetings

Operation Full Disclosure! FTC’s Frontal Assault on Ads

In this blog we often discuss products being subjected to a lawsuit based on allegations that a label is false or misleading under California’s consumer protection laws. The Federal Trade Commission is similarly concerned...more

10/3/2014 - Advertising Disclosure Requirements False Advertising FTC

Guilty Convictions in Salmonella Trial May Signify Landmark in Criminal Food-Safety Prosecutions

This space has thoroughly explored the various forms of civil liability food companies face for the mislabeling and/or deceptive marketing of their products. Last week, a set of landmark convictions in a criminal food-safety...more

9/23/2014 - Criminal Prosecution Food Manufacturers Food Safety Public Safety Salmonella

The Food Fight Continues: Vermont AG Seeks to Dismiss Lawsuit Against GMO Labeling Law

In June, we reported on a suit brought by the Grocery Manufacturers Association (“GMA”) seeking to rescind Vermont’s new GMO-labeling statute, Act 120. As we explained in that post, the GMA argues that Act 120 is doubly...more

8/19/2014 - Commerce Clause First Amendment Food Labeling GMO Popular Supremacy Clause

Sugar and Spice and Cases on Ice: Evaporated Cane Juice Case Stayed Until FDA Issues Formal Guidelines

Last week, a California federal judge revived a putative class action accusing Amy’s Kitchen Inc. of misleading customers by labeling sugar as “evaporated cane juice” on its products. In a finding that puts the case on hold...more

7/15/2014 - Amy's Kitchen Draft Guidance Evaporated Cane Juice FDA Food Labeling Putative Class Actions

Grocery Manufacturers File Suit Against Vermont Over GMO Law

In April, we wrote about the Vermont legislature’s approval of a bill that would require manufacturers to change the retail labels of certain foods to indicate that they are GMO. On May 8, 2014, Vermont enacted the final...more

6/19/2014 - FDA Food Labeling Food Manufacturers GMO Grocery Stores Manufacturers Popular

U.S. Supreme Court: Pom’s Mislabeling Suit Against Coke Not Precluded by FDA Regulations

Recently, the Supreme Court ruled, 8-0, that Pom Wonderful LLC could pursue mislabeling claims under the federal Lanham Act against the Coca-Cola Company, even though the label at issue complied with FDA labeling regulations....more

6/16/2014 - Advertising Coca Cola FDA FDCA Food Labeling Lanham Act NLEA POM Wonderful POM Wonderful v Coca Cola SCOTUS

Update: Vermont Legislature Passes Toxic Chemicals Bill

Last month, we wrote about the toxic chemicals legislation bouncing between the Vermont House and Senate. On May 9, 2014, the Vermont Legislature gave final approval to the bill, S.239, which gives the Vermont Department of...more

6/9/2014 - Chemicals Hazardous Substances Manufacturers Safety Precautions

Vermont Senate OKs Chemicals Bill

On May 5, 2014, the Vermont Senate gave final approval to a bill that would ramp up regulatory scrutiny of the chemicals found in children’s products. The bill, S.239, gives the Vermont Department of Health the authority to...more

5/8/2014 - Chemicals Children's Products Department of Health Manufacturers New Legislation

Down the Rabbit Hole: Primary Jurisdiction Redux

“When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less.’” While perhaps not as far down the rabbit hole as Alice was, the Courts within the...more

10/21/2013 - FDA GMO Jurisdiction

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