Supermarket Perimeter - July 2020 - 58

STABILIT Y FOR RANCHERS
AND FARMERS
by Ryan McCarthy
Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.) has introduced legislation
that expands liability coverage for meat processing
facilities that were mandated to reopen after President
Donald Trump's executive order in April.
"My bill, the Protecting Protein Production and
Consumers Access Act, helps support the stability
and long-term viability of our farmers and ranchers,
protects the jobs of hardworking individuals who
provide these critical services and rely on their jobs in
these plants for their paychecks, and protects every
American's access to safe and affordable beef, pork,
and poultry products," Hartzler said.
The bill stated that "a meat processing facility shall
not be liable under Federal or State law for any
act or omission of the facility with respect to any
harm arising from exposure to, or infraction by, the
virus that causes COVID-19 during a public health
emergency."
Under Hartzler's resolution, plants should still follow
safety provisions and guidelines from local, state and
federal-level health and labor agencies.
In her statement, Hartzler said that 10 Republican
co-sponsors supported her legislation. She also said
the bill ensures meat processing facilities are protected
from frivolous lawsuits only if the claims are not
caused by, gross negligence by the meat processors,
willful or criminal misconduct, reckless misconduct
or conscious flagrant indifference to worker safety
guidelines.
Hartzler's district in Missouri includes a Tyson
Foods Inc., plant in Sedalia, Mo., and Cargill plant in
California, Mo.
58 - JULY 2020

buy the food they need to put
meals on their tables."
To that end, FMI has launched
a one-stop website, www.
feedingassistance.com, where
its members and consumers can
access videos and infographics
on how to apply for and shop
with SNAP benefits. In addition
to accessing federal feeding
programs, the website includes
links to recipes, meal planning
and grocery trip planning
resources for all shoppers.
Finally, Hatcher said, election
procedures are changing as the
country moves through a variety
of primaries, runoffs and general
elections. FMI has a website
to advise its members about
election dates, polling locations
and voting options such as
absentee or mail in voting.
"We have also changed the
mechanism regarding how
we offer political support
to candidates through FMI's
FoodPAC - our political action
committee," she said. "Most of our
fundraisers and conversations are
conducted either via phone or
Zoom. While not as intimate as
an in-person conversation, this
venue is allowing FMI to engage
members outside of the DC-area
in discussions with Members
of Congress, and that is an
unanticipated benefit."

Health and wellbeing:
legislative and regulatory
perspectives
In its 2020 Power of Health and
Well-Being in Food Retail report,
FMI surveys the regulatory and
legislative landscape, which, as
the association puts it, "always
seems to be in motion and
frequently has an impact on
health and well-being issues."
Among the recent updates:
x Nutrition Facts Label: The FDA
will be exercising enforcement
discretion by not focusing on
supermarketperimeter.com

enforcement actions for six
months after the Nutrition
Facts Label compliance
date of January 1, 2020 for
manufacturers with $10 million
or more in annual sales. During
that period, the FDA said it will
work with manufacturers to
meet the new requirements.
Major changes to the label
include those related to serving
size, calories, calories from fat,
and added sugars.
x Definition of healthy: FDA will
issue an updated definition of
"healthy," possibly along with
an icon for labeling purposes
to denote healthy foods. The
FDA also plans to re-evaluate
the ingredient list on food
packages to see what changes
could make ingredient
information more consumerfriendly, such as allowing "salt"
rather than or in addition to
"potassium chloride."
x Pharmacy and fees:
FMI's Speaks research
further emphasized that
pharmacy direct and indirect
renumeration (DIR) fees have
become a major retailer
concern. These are having a
significant negative impact
on many of our member
companies that operate
pharmacies. The fees are
collected retroactively from
pharmacies by supply chain
intermediaries (PBMs). FMI
is focused on legislative and
regulatory efforts to achieve
DIR fee reform.
x Food safety: The FDA will
designate a list of high-risk
foods, a requirement of the
Food Safety Modernization Act,
by September 8, 2020. It will
also issue by the same date
a proposed rule to establish
recordkeeping requirements
for food designated as high
risk, with a final rule by
November 7, 2022.

OFFICE OF REP. VICKY HARTZLER

LEGISLATION


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Supermarket Perimeter - July 2020

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