Thursday, November 30, 2006

This Guacamole Haas No Avocado

The courts have just told us that a burrito is not a sandwich, and now we'll find out if guacamole legally has to contain avocado. A Los Angeles woman is suing Kraft foods over its "guacamole dip" for misleading advertising because the dip contains only 2% avocados. The article is here.

Interestingly, the article notes that peanut butter must contain at least 90% peanuts according to FDA regulations. Frankly, I'm surprised that it's that high. Many European countries take the contents of their food products very seriously. I wonder if this is the beginning of greater federal regulation in this country.


Anonymous said...

The story of the long and procedurally complex process by which the FDA passed the peanut butter regulation should make one think hard about whether we want federal regulation of such things. It's a study in "be careful what you wish for."

Christopher said...

Thanks for the comment. I certainly did not mean to be understood as supporting increased federal regulation. I was simply drawing a possible distinction between the way Americans and Europeans think about food. I'd love to know more about the history of peanut butter regulation if you can suggest anything to read.

Anonymous said...

Oh, I wasn't implying that you supported greater federal regulation. And I'm not really saying that more federal regulation is necessarily bad. I was making the more pedetrian point that the direct costs of such regulation are much higher than one might think.

The only source I can direct you to, offhand, that discuss the peanut butter regulations would be an Administrative Law casebook - the kind you get in law school. In particular, I think that Gellhorn & Byse have it.

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