Posts Categorized: News

FDA Releases Final Menu Labeling Rules

Just two days before Thanksgiving, the FDA announced its final “menu labeling” rules. Who knew a simple five-word clause in the 3,000 page Affordable Care Act to expand chain restaurant menu labeling rules to grocery stores could potentially be one of the most costly and burdensome regulations to impact the grocery industry. Never mind that Congress had no intention of sweeping grocery and convenience stores into the mix in the first place.

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Portland Bag Fee Carries Sales Tax Burden

The City of Portland’s ordinance to charge a 5 cent fee on paper and plastic bags at grocery stores, convenience stores, and pharmacies goes into effect in April 2015. In addition to the 5 cent fee which the retailer gets to keep, Maine Revenue Services has ruled that the 5 cent fee is subject to the state sales of 5.5 percent and therefore must be collected and then remitted to the state. We have asked the City of Portland for further guidance on this ordinance as well as the second ordinance to ban certain polystyrene food containers.

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Holiday Season Store Hours

As the holiday season nears, we want to remind you that state law prohibits stores with 5,000 s.f. or more of retail sales space to be open on Thanksgiving, Thursday, November 27, 2014 and Christmas Day, Thursday, December 25, 2014. The fines for being open are stiff and we expect state enforcers to be on the lookout given the heightened interest in this law in recent past.

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