Naturally, It’s Only Natural. Or, Is It?

Think of that busy mom in a grocery store, standing in front of a wall of granola bars. How does she choose which one to buy? Does she pick the all-natural chocolate peanut butter kind or the not-all-natural chocolate peanut butter kind? Does she believe that products labeled “natural” actually are natural? What does “natural” […]


Getting to the Roots of It All

“Natural”, “organic”, obesity, water, subsidies, pesticides, “local”, “healthy”, genetically-modified food, diabetes, menu labeling, workers’ rights, food labeling, food safety, international trade – the list of hot-button issues in food and agriculture could go on for pages. As the national conversation about food and agriculture gets louder, and seemingly more divisive, it can be challenging to […]

Managing FDA and USDA Compliance

The last few years have seen tremendous changes in the food industry, including passage of the Food Safety Modernization Act; continued criticism of the GRAS (generally recognized as safe) process; increased enforcement of and litigation about food claims and classifications and their intersection with marketing and advertising efforts; and increased demands of managing national and […]


Chip-and-PIN (EMV) Credit Card Liability Shift is Oct. 1: Are You Ready?

October 1 is right around the corner. Hotels and restaurants: are you ready for what’s in your customers’ wallets? As payment card transactions have supplanted cash and check-made purchases, point-of-sale (POS) devices have become a necessity for many businesses, particularly those in the hospitality industry: from the biggest hotels to smallest cafés and bistros. But […]


Berkeley’s Measure D: What Distributors, Restaurants and Retailers need to know about the Berkeley “Sugar Tax”

According to its backers, the Berkeley “Sugar Tax” is the future of sugar in America.  Berkeley’s Measure “D,” which garnered an overwhelming 75% “yes” vote, imposes a general excise tax of $0.01 per ounce on the distribution of sugar-sweetened beverages and the sweeteners used to sweeten such drinks:  this amounts to a 12 cent tax on a […]


Five Tips To Launching A Franchise Program Successfully

CONGRATULATIONS!  You’ve spent years building your business, developing a loyal following, and honing your operations into a replicable format.  You own two, three or maybe ten different locations, all profitable, and understand your business inside and out.  You know the right demographics and cost to jumpstart new locations.  You’ve cultivated reliable supply relationships, built a […]


Twelve Tips for Franchisors to Reduce Joint Employer Risks Under Today’s Legal Standards

Franchise agreement recitals declaring your franchisee to be an independent contractor, not an employee, are not dispositive! Until now, the spotlight has never shined so brightly on franchising and, specifically, on whether franchisors are responsible for their franchisees’ activities. On July 29, 2014, the NLRB’s General Counsel announced its plan to sue McDonald’s for numerous […]