Foodservice Equipment Reports Fortnightly

Welcome to FER Fortnightly Online Newsletter
May 5, 2009

Economic Report:
Sponsored by:
MAFSI Barometer Has E&S Sales Down 11% In Q1
Now For Some Good News: NRA's Performance Index Rises Again
Q1 GDP Plummeted 6.1%, But Consumer Confidence, Spending Up
Given What We've Seen, The Revised FER E&S Market Forecast Still Looks Good

Industry Report:
Sponsored by:
HOFEX 2009
Middleby Buys CookTek
And Middleby Acquires Assets Of Anetsberger Bros.
Vollrath Acquires Anvil America
Vicorp Sells Assets, Units Stay Open
ASHFSA, HFM Vote To Consolidate
Starbucks Debuts In Poland
FEDA Honors Ken Gill

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In This Section:
Texas To Flush Old Toilet Standards
Stamford Says FOG Will Cost $250/Day
Calorie Posting Probable In Ontario, Off In W.V., Voluntary In U.K.
Trans Fat To Go On Diet In Texas, Maine

This issue's Economic ReportSponsor: Food&HotelVietnam2009 
Industry Report Sponsor: HOFEX 2009 
Regulatory Report Manitowoc Foodservice

Texas To Flush Old Toilet Standards
Texas may be the home of big 10-gallon hats, but if the state legislature has its way, the biggest toilets for sale in the state will be limited to 1.28 gals./flush by 2014.

The state is pushing the adoption of high-efficiency toilet standards to be phased in over the next five years. If passed, the new law would require manufacturers to have at least 50% of their models for sale in Texas be HETs by January 2010 with that percentage gradually increasing each year. The proposal also would limit urinals to no more than 0.5 gals./flush.

Manufacturers will have to submit verifications that fixtures meet ANSI standards to comply with the new law unless the fixture has already been certified by the EPA's WaterSense program. Texas is only the second state, after California, to propose a mandate on HETs.


Section sponsored by Manitowoc Foodservice

Stamford Says FOG Will Cost $250/Day
Stamford, Conn., is holding public hearings on a new Fats/Oils/Grease ordinance that could cost operators up to $250 a day in fines.

Hoping to cut down the amount of FOG that ends up clogging the sewer system, the city proposed the new ordinance to give itself the ability to enforce state regulations already on the books governing local water and sewer utilities.

The ordinance would require operators to install grease traps and clean them regularly. Minor violations, such as not maintaining proper records or cleaning traps often enough would result in fines of $100 per day. Major violators—those who don't install traps or who fail to correct violations after a notice—would be fined $250 per day.

Based on input from operators and the public, the city will decide whether to put the ordinance into effect in July 2010 or the following year.

Section sponsored by Manitowoc Foodservice

Calorie Posting Probable In Ontario, Off In W.V., Voluntary In U.K.
In Canada, Ontario's provincial government is pushing a bill to get chains to post calorie counts on menus.

The proposed bill represents a departure from a voluntary program in which restaurants have been working with Health Canada to provide nutrition information on a voluntary basis through the Nutrition Information Program. Ontario's Bill 156, if passed, would require chains with sales of $5 million or more in Ontario to post calories on menus. Restaurants also would have to eliminate trans fat from all menu items.

The Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association opposes the bill, saying that chains participating in the voluntary program are already providing consumers with much more complete information than the bill requires. The association supports a national standard on trans fat instead of local or provincial limits like the bill recently enacted in British Columbia.

In West Virginia, a bill to get chains to post calorie counts on menus went down for the count in the state Senate in late March. The vote, though close at 19-14, went against the bill because of "competition from the federal government," according to Sen. Roman Prezioso, a supporter of the bill. A federal nutrition-labeling law would preempt state laws.

Meanwhile, the U.K. is taking a voluntary approach to the issue, and its Food Standards Agency just announced 18 major foodservice companies have signed on, agreeing to post calorie information on their menus. The companies, including Burger King, Compass Group, Pizza Hut, Sodexo, Subway and Wimpy, started displaying calorie counts on all menu items the end of April. The Food Standards Agency said that 450 of the companies' outlets will post calories by June.

Section sponsored by Manitowoc Foodservice

Trans Fat To Go On Diet In Texas, Maine
Trans fat appears to be going the way of the dodo in Texas and Maine. Although most major chains and many independent restaurants have voluntarily eschewed trans fat over the past several years, legislatures in both states are considering bills to ban it outright.

In Texas, state rep Carol Alvarado from Houston and Sen. Eliot Shapleigh from El Paso, have sponsored a bill, modified from an earlier version reported by FER Fortnightly in January, that would require chains with 15 or more units to stop using oils, shortenings and margarines containing trans fat by September 2010. Smaller chains and independents would have an additional year to comply. No penalties have been set yet.

A bill proposed in Maine by state Rep. David Webster would ban trans fat starting next January. If passed as proposed, the bill would fine restaurants $1,000 for noncompliance. The co-chairman of the Health and Human Services Committee, Sen. Joseph Brannigan, said his committee will likely approve the bill with some tweaks to how it's implemented and enforced.

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