Posts from June 2021.
Cal/OSHA Approves Modified COVID-19 Workplace Regulations

On June 17, 2021, the California Occupational Safety & Health Standards Board (the Cal/OSHA Board) voted to approve a set of new modified COVID-19-related workplace emergency regulations, found here. The new modified regulations will need to be approved within ten days by the state Office of Administrative Law, which is expected to approve the rules. Governor Newsom has also indicated that he may approve the rules immediately. 

These regulations replace more stringent regulations that were inconsistent with the latest guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control and ...

Posted in Legal Bites
FDA Issues Final Rule on Yogurt Standard of Identity

On June 11, 2021, the FDA issued a final rule to amend the standard of identity for yogurt. The rule will become effective on July 12, 2021. 

A standard of identity describes in detail what a food product must contain, how it must be proportioned and in some cases how it must be manufactured. The FDA has more than 280 standards for a wide variety of food products.  As part of the FDA’s Nutrition Innovation Strategy, the agency has been considering standards of identity and particularly looking to revoke or update standards when they are inconsistent with modern manufacturing processes or ...

Posted in Legal Bites
Ninth Circuit: Trader Joe’s Chicken Labeling Claims Federally Preempted

On June 4, 2021, a panel of judges from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the dismissal of consumer poultry labeling claims against Trader Joe’s on the ground that those claims were federally preempted. The consumer claims alleged that Trader Joe’s labels on poultry were misleading under California law because they had different percentages of retained water than was displayed on their labels. 

Poultry labeling, including a retained water data collection process and label production, are regulated by the federal Poultry Products Inspection Act (“PPIA”) and the ...

Posted in Legal Bites
LA County Moves from Temporary to Permanent Outdoor Dining

On Tuesday, June 8, 2021, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved a motion to establish permanent guidelines for outdoor dining and move from the temporary pandemic authorizations to a long-term plan.

The motion requested several L.A. County agencies to work together to establish permanent Countywide guidelines for expanded options for outdoor dining spaces. This includes new guidelines for public sidewalks, alleys, and private on-site and off-site parking facilities.

The Board also asked those agencies to develop a plan to transition all restaurants that have ...

California Announces Rules for June 15 Reopening; Cal/OSHA Reconsiders Employer Requirements

On June 9, 2021, the California Department of Public Health announced a new face coverings guidance that will go into effect statewide on June 15, 2021. In addition, Governor Newsom’s office announced that on June 15, 2021, California would be fully reopen with no capacity limits or distancing required by the state. The county-by-county color tier system will also be eliminated. However, individual county health departments may continue to impose restrictions under local public health orders.

Under the State’s new guidance, fully vaccinated persons are not required to wear ...

Posted in Legal Bites
FDA Announces $134M Budget Increase for FY 2022

On June 7, 2021, the FDA released its Fiscal Year 2022 budget request, outlining key investments for food safety. The request details how the FDA plans to use funds in FY 2022 to support food safety and nutrition. The budget provides increases to core food safety programs and outlines emerging issues of concern for the agency.

The agency’s FY 2022 Budget provides $1.6 billion in budget authority for food safety, an increase of $134 million from the previous year.

The agency’s press release states: “[o]f the increase of $134 million for food safety activities, $45 million is for ...

Cal/OSHA Issues Modified COVID-19 Regulations

On June 3, 2021, the California Occupational Safety & Health Standards Board approved new modified COVID-19-related emergency regulations. The new modified regulations, which are found here, will need to be approved by the state Office of Administrative Law within ten days. The OAL is expected to approve the rules.

When approved, the new regulations will become effective on June 15, 2021, the same day on which Governor Newsom announced California would reopen. These regulations may be further refined in the coming weeks to take into account changes in circumstances, especially as ...

California Extends ABC Regulatory Relief

On June 3, 2021, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced the extension of some pandemic alcohol measures designed to help restaurants and bars. The press release states: “The Administration today extended relief measures that permit restaurants and bars to continue to benefit from their investments to expand outdoor operations in areas such as sidewalks and parking lots, and to continue the sale of to-go alcoholic beverages with food deliveries, among other successful pandemic adaptations. In addition, the Administration is urging local governments to facilitate ...

U.S. Court of Appeals Upholds CalSavers Program

The United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit) recently upheld California’s CalSavers Retirement Savings Program (CalSavers), which provides retirement savings accounts to employees without employer retirement benefit plans. The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association sued to challenge the law establishing the CalSavers program arguing that it was superseded by federal retirement law, specifically the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). However, the U.S. Appeals court upheld the CalSavers program holding that it was not preempted by ERISA.

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