Final Ruling on National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard Supports Transparency for Consumers

Washington, D.C., December 20, 2018—In response to the Final Rule on the “National Bioengineered (BE) Food Disclosure Standard,” issued today, December 20, in pre-publication by The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), the leading trade association for the dietary supplement and functional food industry, issued the following statement:

Statement by Steve Mister, President & CEO, CRN: 

“CRN welcomes the release of USDA’s Final Rule implementing the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard (NBFDS). The Final Rule advances transparency for consumers about the presence of bioengineered (BE) material in both food and dietary supplement products. It requires food manufacturers, importers, and other entities that label food for retail sale to disclose information about BE food and BE food ingredients. The BE disclosure issue is complex and USDA has struck a careful balance between empowering consumers to make informed decisions about the food and dietary supplement products they purchase while not creating unnecessary regulatory burdens or misleading warnings about these products. 

CRN submitted comments to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) regarding the NBFDS in July. CRN encouraged the AMS to develop a uniform standard and national system for BE disclosure to allow food manufacturers to provide consistent information regarding BE foods and we offered recommendations on several specific items unique to dietary supplements and functional food. The final Standard closely aligns with CRN’s comments and incorporates many of those suggestions

CRN is also pleased that the timing of this Final Rule allows companies to implement these requirements at the same time they are finalizing FDA’s mandated changes to the Supplement Facts and Nutrition Facts labeling. The implementation date of January 2020 will allow companies to make all these changes at once, thus reducing compliance costs of two separate mandates. CRN is optimistic that this ruling will create a better and more transparent system for consumers.”

The Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), founded in 1973, is a Washington, D.C.-based trade association representing 150+ dietary supplement and functional food manufacturers, ingredient suppliers and companies providing services to those manufacturers and suppliers. In addition to complying with a host of federal and state regulations governing dietary supplements and food in the areas of manufacturing, marketing, quality control and safety, our manufacturer and supplier members also agree to adhere to additional voluntary guidelines as well as to CRN’s Code of Ethics. Visit Follow us on Twitter @CRN_Supplements and LinkedIn