Foodservice Equipment Reports Fortnightly

Welcome to FER Fortnightly Online Newsletter
January 4, 2007

Economic Report:
Sponsored by:
Hotelex Shanghai,
April 4-7, 2007
NRA Forecasts 2.1% Real Growth For Foodservice In 2007
Sunbelt, Mountain States Again To Lead Growth, NRA Predicts
Consumer Sentiment, Expectations, GDP Growth All Trickle Lower
NRA Index Flat In November; E&S Trends Remain Positive

Industry Report:
Electric Rates To Skyrocket Widely
TriMark USA Under New Ownership
Vent Master Merges With Halton
EFC Honors Enodis Companies
ASHRAE Releases New GreenGuide

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In This Section:
Fat Fight Trans-forming Legislative Landscape
Portland Businesses Surprise Council In Support Of Chains
Oregon's Reefers Just Got Colder
It's Jan. 4: Do You Know Where Your Certified Food Manager Is?

This issue's Economic ReportSponsor: Hotelex Shanghai, April 4-7, 2007 | Industry Report

Regulatory Report Sponsored by Franke Foodservice Systems

Fat Fight Trans-forming Legislative Landscape
New York's landmark ban on trans fat has lawmakers across the country considering similar rules. At the state level, Massachusetts is the first to jump into the fray. State rep Peter Koutoujian, who is also a co-chairman of the Legislature's Joint Committee on Public Health, recently introduced a bill that would give restaurants one year to switch to trans fat-free oils, shortenings and margarines. The state legislature starts a new session this month, but the bill will first have to work its way through committee before it's considered for a vote. Connecticut reportedly is considering similar trans fat action.

At city level, Chicago Alderman Ed Burke proposed a ban on trans fat in restaurant food back in July. Since then, he has modified it to apply only to chains with $20 million-plus in sales and would phase it in over two years. The proposal is being studied by members of the city council's license and consumer protection committee.

Other major cities studying trans fat limits include Boston and Philadelphia.

And while the regulators are regulating, more companies are announcing their own plans to go trans fat-free. Darden Restaurants and Denny's are the most recent chains to say publicly they'll make the switch. Darden announced it will now use canola oil in both Red Lobster and Olive Garden restaurants to help eliminate trans fat from its menu. Denny's has announced it plans to switch to a new frying shortening by midyear and will continue to look at a substitute for current margarines and ways to eliminate trans fat from other sources in menu items.

McCain Foods also took out a full-page ad in The New York Times to publicize its efforts to eliminate the substance from its products. The Canadian company, the world's largest supplier of frozen French fries, has reformulated its retail line of fries but still hasn't reworked all its foodservice products. The company has promised to make all foodservice products trans fat-free within a year.


Section sponsored by Scotsman Ice Systems/Enodis

Portland Businesses Surprise Council In Support Of Chains
The Portland, Me., city council voted in November to restrict the proliferation of chain restaurants, banning them from the downtown area altogether. In a surprise move, however, a group of local businessmen have vowed to fight back.

Saying the city needs to rethink how it regulates development plans for the downtown area, local Realtor Tony Donovan organized a petition on behalf of other businesses to repeal the new ordinance. "The city can implement design standards, but it can't exclude a class of businesses, yet let similar local businesses operate," he said.

The issue first came to a head when some city officials objected to a local sports-bar owner's plans to buy a Hooter's franchise and locate it next to the downtown civic center. An ordinance blocking the move passed by a 5-1 vote on the strength of the argument that it didn't ban chains from the city, just the downtown historic core. Donovan's group needs 1,500 signatures to start the repeal process, which it expects to have by June.

Section sponsored by Scotsman Ice Systems/Enodis

Oregon's Reefers Just Got Colder
A reminder for anyone with stores in Oregon: As of Jan. 1, the coolers have to be, well, cooler.

Back in 2002, Oregon adopted new (at the time) FDA Model Food Code standards that lowered required refrigerated storage temperatures in reach-ins and walk-ins to 41°F from 45°F. The state allowed the industry five years to adapt to the change.

The change doesn't necessarily mean you have to run out and purchase new equipment, though, said Eric Pippert, manager of the foodborne illness prevention program in the Public Health Division of Oregon's Department of Human Services. Some well-maintained refrigeration equipment is perfectly capable of maintaining the lower temps.

Check with your supplier if you're not sure of the specs on your equipment.

Section sponsored by Scotsman Ice Systems/Enodis

It's Jan. 4: Do You Know Where Your Certified Food Manager Is?
If you operate in the counties under the jurisdiction of Kentucky's Barren River District Health Department, Jan. 1 was your deadline to make sure there's a certified food manager on the premises at all times. Managers or employees who pass a ServSafe or equivalent food safety certification program are required on-site at all times in foodservice operations in Barren, Butler, Edmonson, Hart, Logan, Metcalfe, Simpson and Warren Counties.

If you're out of compliance, the health department can fine you up to $100 per day. Barren River District offers certification classes for $50, but you can submit course outlines of other certification courses for department approval.

To register for a class, contact Sherry Poland at the Barren River District Health Department at 270/781-8039 or go to for more information.

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