The Food, Beverage and Cosmetics Law Review: Editors' Preface
Food, beverage and cosmetic companies provide products that are beneficial to consumers, important to the economy and in high demand. Consumers are seeking not only high-quality products at reasonable prices, but also increasingly considering sustainability, methods of manufacture and use (or omission) of certain ingredients. These demands require companies to not only be looking ahead towards the 'next big thing' in these consumer industries, but also considering how those attributes that are so important to customers (some of which have not been universally defined) can be communicated in a true and not misleading way. What's more, companies need to act in compliance with the regulatory schemes of the locations in which they sell, and also make sure that their products – some of which are quite cutting edge – are safe and effective.
Regulatory, legislative and civil litigation frameworks vary dramatically from country to country and from locality to locality within each country. These laws and regulations may be similar, or may be directly contradictory. Some types of products may be subject to extreme scrutiny, while others seem to be of less interest (and where on that spectrum your product falls may differ from day to day). Each jurisdiction is different, and advice from local legal experts is absolutely necessary before operating in (including selling into) any jurisdiction. This guide, however, is intended to provide a general overview of both the regulatory and civil legal frameworks in key countries for consideration by legal practitioners in these industries.
This is the first edition of The Food, Beverage and Cosmetics Law Review. It was developed because of the increase in class action litigation related to claims, particularly health benefit claims, made in the labelling and marketing of food, beverage and cosmetic products. We have also seen an increase in concern about food safety and food tracing across the world as a result of food-borne illness outbreaks. This first edition covers nine countries and includes a high-level overview of each jurisdiction's legal framework for food, beverage and cosmetic products, and a year in review, followed by discussions of legal frameworks related to food, beverage and cosmetic safety (including recalls); supply chain issues (including sustainability, anti-corruption, and labour and immigration); special legal issues related to sales and marketing (including whether regulatory approvals are required); general product liability and intellectual property laws; the role of trade organisations (including certifications) and unique issues related to financing, mergers and acquisitions in this space.
We hope that all readers find these chapters useful and informative. We wish to thank all of the contributors who have been so generous with their time and expertise. They have made this publication possible.
Kara L McCall and Elizabeth M Chiarello
Sidley Austin LLP