After years in limbo, the infamous FDA Food Labeling deadline passed on May 7, and the menu regulations are now in effect.
What does this mean for your business? Are you prepared for compliance?
As a quick recap, the Obama-era FDA menu labeling law requires restaurants and food establishments with 20 or more locations to disclose calorie counts on menus and menu boards, along with additional nutritional information upon request.
Earlier this month, the FDA issued its menu labeling final guidance to help franchisors meet the new requirements. However, some businesses are running into trouble while others continue to seek clarity.
FDA Menu Labeling Meets Variable Menus
As the new bill rolls out, establishments with highly-variable menus are running into trouble. Take a pizza chain, for example. Pizza restaurants can have millions of different possible pizza, topping, and meal combinations that can create menu board mayhem.
Many restaurants and food establishments are left wondering how to best comply with the FDA Food Labeling requirements in a way that meets their customers’ needs and keeps their operations afloat. Plus, as QSR Web points out, this is just the beginning, as consumers demand a deeper level of transparency from the food establishments that serve them.
Here’s the good news – there’s still time. While the deadline has passed, initially the FDA will focus on working collaboratively with establishments to help them catch up. Ultimately, while the FDA will offer a helping hand, they do expect compliance. Those who fail to meet the mandate will face stiff penalties.
Tackling FDA Food Labeling Regulations with an Omnichannel Product Content Platform
Businesses that rush to comply with the FDA labeling guidelines may be tempted to turn to a Band-Aid solution. However, for franchisors lacking a Product Information Management (PIM) system, delivery of up-to-date, FDA-compliant menus and labeling will be an ongoing problem.
Keeping physical and digital information accurate and timely for menu labeling (and beyond) is a perfect use case for an omnichannel product content platform.
EnterWorks recently introduced the Multi-Enterprise Master Data Management (MDM) and Precision Eating™ solution. Leveraging a Business-to-Business-to-Consumer (B2B2C) approach, the platform helps businesses create a central food content network by effectively bringing together growers, brands, distributors, food service, retailers, and restaurants, as well as engaging servicers and data providers to collaborate on content.
An advanced MDM platform that powers B2B2C networks can integrate and synchronize food and beverage data, enabling food establishments to access and combine granular food information (nutrients, formulations, recipes, food labels, etc.) from trusted sources that can then be filtered to precisely meet a customer’s needs.
In the case of a pizza chain, the millions of combinations can be overwhelming, but the EnterWorks MDM and Precision Eating platform can accomplish all of the configurable formulations that restaurant chains require. The solution is designed for franchise organizations to comply with regulatory mandates, plus manage recipes and formulations.
To learn how EnterWorks MDM with Precision Eating can transform your business and satisfy customers, download the CGTechTips article, Personalize Food Choices for Exacting Eaters.