Foodservice Equipment Reports Fortnightly
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Welcome to FER Fortnightly Online Newsletter
July 20, 2004








Economic Report:
Sponsored by:
DI Foodservice Cos.


NPD’s CREST Reports Strong Second-Quarter Traffic Gains
NRA’s May Restaurant Performance Index Shows Slight Declines
Special Focus: Are Commercial Operator Sales Beginning to Plateau?
Technomic Top 100 Outforms Industry In ’03; Second 100 Lags
Blue Chip Economists Temper Growth Forecast

Industry Report:
Sponsored by: New Age Industrial Corp. Inc.

QualServ Sells To Riverside
U.S. Foodservice Puts Contract Division Up For Sale
Jacmar, Shakey’s Main Franchisee, To Buy Pizza Company For $4.5 Million
Aga Foodservice Names Whalen To Top Sales And Marketing Post
McDonald's Plans Two New Flagships
‘Keep Your Cool’ At Chicago-Area Refrigeration Seminar



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In This Section:
EPA Offers Extension For Oil-Spill Regs Compliance
Idaho Jumps On Smoking "Ban" Wagon
Disputed Study Asserts Florida Restaurants Thriving With Smoking Ban
New Codes For Texas-Bound Prefabs

This issue's Economic Report
Sponsor: DI Foodservice Cos.  |  Industry ReportSponsor: New Age Industrial Corp. Inc.


Regulatory ReportSponsored by ES3

EPA Offers Extension For Oil-Spill Regs Compliance
Good news, bad news: The good news is that the Environmental Protection Agency last month extended the deadline for complying with its oil pollution regulation known as the Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasure Plan.

The bad news is that, though some debate continues, the rule currently applies to foodservice as well as other businesses near waterways or bodies of water.

If your business—including restaurants—has above-ground oil storage tanks with a cumulative capacity of 1,320 gals. or more, and if that business is located near a waterway or body of water, the EPA as of right now requires you to create a detailed action plan of what to do in the event of a large-scale oil spill. The Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasure Plan is meant to prevent major oil spills from reaching rivers, lakes or oceans.

The EPA last month proposed a one-year extension for compliance dates for the SPCC Rule. The proposal pushes the deadline to Aug. 17, 2005, to amend existing plans, and to Feb. 18, 2006, to write new plans. New facilities (those opened on Aug. 16, 2002 or later) would have until Feb. 18, 2006, to prepare a plan.

Here’s the back story: Last July the EPA expanded its interpretation of which businesses would come under the Oil Spill Prevention and Containment rule, a part of the Clean Water Act. The rule was first created in the wake of the Exxon Valdez disaster to prevent oil discharges from reaching "navigable waters of the United States or adjoining shorelines." It targeted businesses such as oil drillers, producers, users and refiners. Recent changes broaden applicability to "owners or operators that use oil"—which could conceivably include any restaurant with a decent-sized fryer bank.

The National Restaurant Association has gone to bat for its members by submitting impact statements to the EPA during the comment period. "As currently written, the SPCC requirements would provide an unjustified enormous financial burden on the restaurant industry," said Steve Grover, v.p. of regulatory affairs for the NRA. "The Association will continue its discussions with the EPA to ensure that future drafted guidance reflects the true intention of these requirements."

For more information, go to the Oil Spill section of the EPA Web site, at www.epa.gov/oilspill/spccrule.htm.


Section sponsored by ES3

Idaho Jumps On Smoking "Ban" Wagon
Smoking at Idaho eateries as of July 1 is now verboten. The state’s Clean Indoor Air Act, which took effect July 1, prohibits patrons from lighting up in most of Idaho’s roughly 3,400 restaurants.

Lobbying by the Idaho Lodging and Restaurant Association eased some aspects of the ban for operators. Patio smoking is still okay, for example. And bar owners can choose from three options: To go smoke-free; to allow smoking as long as they bar those under 21 from the premises; or to operate under "dual designation," which permits smoking at certain times of the day.

Nonsmoking restaurants and bars will face fines of up to $100 for violations. Owners are responsible for regulating themselves. Individuals who refuse to cooperate or leave the nonsmoking restaurant could be fined up to $50.

"We didn’t support the legislation," says ILRA’s Exec. Dir. Edward Lodge. "But now that it’s passed, we’re working closely with the Act’s sponsors and law enforcement to help Idaho restaurants comply."


Section sponsored by ES3

Disputed Study Asserts Florida Restaurants Thriving With Smoking Ban
"No smoke, no problem," is the conclusion of a study on the impact of Florida’s yearlong ban on smoking in the workplace.

The University of Florida’s Bureau of Economic and Business Research released findings showing that sales for restaurants, lunchrooms and catering services actually have increased more than 7% since the Florida Clean Indoor Act took effect on July 1, 2003. The study, sponsored by an organization called the Smoke-Free for Health Coalition, found no significant change in sales at taverns, nightclubs and bars.

"These gains refute any notion that the restriction on smoking in Florida is bad for business," said Smoke-Free Chairman Marty Larsen in a press release. "Now we are seeing that what is good for health is good for business."

The Florida Restaurant Association, however, disputes the significance of the findings. A spokesman noted that the state’s restaurant economy has been steadily recovering since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks caused a sharp decline in tourism, and that some restaurants with a smoking clientele have suffered a drop in business.



Section sponsored by ES3

New Codes For Texas-Bound Prefabs
If prefab restaurants are your game, and Texas your playing field, be aware that any new modular buildings earmarked for that state will now require an updated seal of approval from the Texas Industrialized Building Code Council. The approvals follow the 2003 editions of the Int'l. Building Codes and the ’02 edition of the National Electrical Code.

Effective July 1 this year, all plans and documents in the building manufacturer’s design package—including the compliance control manual and system calculations—now require a Texas approval date of July 1, 2004, or later to prove that they comply with the new code editions.

If construction of your prefab started BEFORE July, it’ll need to be completed, inspected in the plant by a Texas-approved inspector and labeled within 180 days of the construction start-date. If you miss the 180-day deadline, the unit will not be approved for use in Texas.

A copy of Texas’ new code edition rules is online at http://www.license.state.tx.us/ihb/ihbrules70_100.htm#70.100.




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