FDA Grants 30-Day Extension for Comments to Menu Labeling Rule

June 29, 2017By Etan J. Yeshua

Last month we reported that FDA decided to delay the compliance date for restaurant menu labeling from May 5, 2017 to May 7, 2018 while it reconsiders certain aspects of the final menu labeling rule. The Agency requested comments from industry and other stakeholder about how the rule should be revised to reduce the regulatory burden on restaurants and other covered establishments: FDA said that only comments submitted within 60 days (by July 3, 2017) would be considered. Now, FDA is adding 30 days to the comment period.

The extension comes in response to a request from the National Restaurant Association (NRA). About halfway into the original comment period, NRA told FDA that it would be “nearly impossible” to prepare and submit its comments without an additional 60-day extension. Yesterday, with the deadline right around the corner, FDA stated in a letter to NRA that the Agency will extend the comment period by 30 days. Although it isn’t the full 60-day extension that NRA requested, restaurants and other interested parties will now have (by our count) until August 2, 2017 to submit comments. An official announcement of the extension (in the Federal Register) is forthcoming. FDA’s decision does not change the May 7, 2018 compliance date.