Foodservice Equipment Reports Fortnightly
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Welcome to FER Fortnightly Online Newsletter
August 3, 2004








Economic Report:
Sponsored by:
Atlas Metal Industries Inc.


Dealer Sales Good, Margins Only Fair, FEDA Reports
Big Chain Sales Numbers Hold Up Through July
NRA Reports June Sales and Traffic Up, But Expectations Edge Downward
Consumer Sentiment, Expectations Improve In July Survey
Big QSRs Win By Luring Adults

Industry Report:
Sponsored by: Hatco Corp.

Restaurant Lobby Kiosks Make Mail-Order Easy
Frisch's To Open 21 Golden Corrals
IHOP And Paradise Ink Deal For Up To 40 New Locations
Panera Rising



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In This Section:
New ADA Guidelines Finally Released
Ohio Restricts POS Printout Data
NSF/ANSI 18 Changes Announced
U.K.’s "Chip and PIN" Program To Shift Fraud Liability
China’s New Franchise Rules Expected By Yearend…Probably


This issue's Economic Report
Sponsor: Atlas Metal Industries Inc. |  Industry ReportSponsor: Hatco Corp.


Regulatory ReportSponsored by ES3

New ADA Guidelines Finally Released
Time flies when you’re having fun: Nearly five years after the Federal Register first posted proposed changes to the 1991 Americans with Disabilities Act Architectural Guidelines for public comment, the U.S. government late last month released its updated ADAAG.

As before, the guidelines pertain to new construction and to remodel/renovation activity.

Perhaps the biggest substantive change for foodservice operators has to do with accessibility of work areas. As the summary section of the new ADAAG notes, "The original ADA guidelines specified that work areas be on an accessible route so that persons with disabilities can approach, enter, and exit the space….The new guidelines also require the accessibility of circulation paths within (emphasis added) sizable (1,000 sq. ft. or more) work areas."

Access within individual work stations still is not required beyond "reasonable accommodation."

In another change, the new ADAAG reduces maximum side-reach height to 48" from its previous 54".

Another update represents an easing of requirements: Rather than the old ADAAG’s specification of an absolute 18" centerline placement of toilets, the new guideline allows a range of 16" to 18".

The new guidelines, which function as a model code for the Department of Justice to adopt in interpreting and enforcing ADA compliance, were released July 23 by the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board and become effective Sept. 21.

The agency, also known as the Access Board, states that key goals of the new guidelines are to harmonize with model building codes and industry standards groups such as the International Building Code and the American National Standards Institute. In addition, the new ADAAG is reorganized in an effort to make it more user-friendly.

Just three days after release of the new 300-plus page ADAAG, Christine Andrews, senior manager of health and safety regulatory affairs for the National Restaurant Association, said the association was continuing to study numerous technical changes for impact on foodservice operators.

FER Fortnightly will report additional details as analysis continues. You can see the new ADAAG and order free printed copies at www.access-board.gov.



Section sponsored by ES3

Ohio Restricts POS Printout Data
If you have locations in Ohio, you’ll soon have to change the way your POS systems print credit card receipts. The state’s General Assembly recently passed SB250, a bill that helps protect consumers and businesses from credit card fraud.

Restaurants and other businesses that process credit or debit card transactions can no longer print the entire account number or card expiration date on receipts. Receipts can include the last five digits of a customer’s card number. The new law applies only to electronic transactions, not those you write by hand or those done by card imprinter.

No word on when the new law will take effect.



Section sponsored by ES3

NSF/ANSI 18 Changes Announced
Attention, makers of manual food and beverage dispensing equipment: You now have a better way to test the cleanability of your machines’ nooks and crannies, say the folks at NSF Int'l. and American National Standards Institute.

The 2004 version of the NSF/ANSI 18, effective June 10, prescribes a more sensitive test for gauging the effectiveness of manufacturers’ in-place cleaning procedures for various pieces of equipment. The new test, called Membrane Filtration, or MF, selects only for the target organisms and allows researchers to count the number of microbes in the entire 500-ml sample medium specified.

By contrast, the previous methodology required two separate procedures—a pour-plating test used to identify target organisms and a separate Most Probable Number method that made only a statistical estimate of microbial population based on a partial sample of the 500-ml effluent.

The NSF/ANSI 18 standard was developed by the NSF Joint Committee on Food Equipment, using the consensus process determined by ANSI.

NSF Int'l., of Ann Arbor, Mich., is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to certifying products, writing standards to protect food, water, air and goods.



Section sponsored by ES3

U.K.’s "Chip and PIN" Program To Shift Fraud Liability
Here’s a heads-up for anyone operating a restaurant in the United Kingdom that accepts credit cards.

With credit card fraud becoming a mounting concern around the world, the U.K.’s pulling a technology switch. Credit cards using a conventional magnetic strip are being replaced by cards featuring a coded microchip. The new card, combined with use of a personal identification code, or PIN, is intended to provide more security for card users.

And starting January 1, 2005, if a fraudulent transaction occurs in your U.K. outlet using a chip and PIN card, and if that incident could have been prevented by using a chip and PIN payment terminal, then it’s your company—not the bank—that will pay the cost of the fraud. In other words, banks will no longer be liable for the majority of card fraud, a crime that cost the British banking industry more than £400 million in 2003.

Regardless of your business’ size, you will need a chip and PIN reader; a PIN pad on which the customer enters his or her PIN; and the software to read the card information to check the card’s validity and complete the transaction. Banks are now in the process of upgrading existing terminals.

Not only does the chip and PIN system help prevent fraud, it also trims administrative costs, since all transactions are electronically recorded, proponents say.

The program is being rolled out across the U.K. and Europe. Currently more than two in five U.K. cardholders, or 17.2 million people, have chip and PIN cards.

For more details, point your browser at www.chipandpin.co.uk.



Section sponsored by ES3

China’s New Franchise Rules Expected By Yearend…Probably
A draft regulation on franchising is expected to clarify China’s legal definition of the widely used business expansion model, according to reports in Mainland China newspapers. The regulation—now in its third year as a draft—could possibly be finalized by the end of this year.

"Draft Regulations for Administration of Franchising Chain Operations" would specifically address China’s international franchise agreements. International issues were not addressed when laws governing franchise transactions were first passed in 1997.

The lack of specific commercial franchise rules has hardly stopped foreign companies from entering the mainland market with its 1.3 billion population. China is home to more than 1,000 KFCs, 560 McDonald's, 110 Pizza Huts and 70 Starbucks. According to the U.S.-China Consulting Group in Beijing, the country has about 1,500 franchise companies (both local and foreign concepts), with about 70,000 franchisees.

China had agreed to standardize the regulatory treatment of all domestic and international franchise relationships within three years, following its Dec. 11, 2001, membership in the World Trade Organization. Officials had initially said that new franchising rules would be finalized in ’02, and then later projected finalization for ’03.




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