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For Immediate Release
Reading, Pa. – Barley Snyder partner Tim Dietrich had the honor of presenting at the inaugural Food Law and Regulation Forum in Chicago in May.
Dietrich presented as part of a panel on May 24 explaining liability for food industry executives imposed by the Park Doctrine, the Yates Memo and the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. While in the past these rules have been applied to executives of pharmaceutical and medical device companies, there has been a growing trend to apply those regulations and standards to the food industry. That has left many in the industry worried that quality challenges associated with food production could leave a company’s corporate directors and executives exposed to civil liability or even jail time.
“This is a hot topic in the industry right now,” Dietrich said. “There are a lot of companies, and a lot of lawyers for those companies, that are seeing a whole new ballgame with this. It’s a revelation to some in the food industry that these federal rules could be applied to them.”
The Park Doctrine may hold corporate officers and executives accountable if someone in their company for which they have a responsibility ships a product that is adulterated and potentially harmful. In the food industry, the Park Doctrine has been applied to executives in companies that sent food out to market that made customers sick. In the most extreme cases executives have received federal jail time where ingestion of the food sold by their company has caused multiple deaths.
The American Conference Institute hosted the three-day workshop from May 23 to 25. Attorneys from across the country joined Dietrich in presenting, including counsel from companies such as Pepsi Co., the J.M. Smucker Co., Ocean Spray Cranberries Inc., Conagra Brands Inc. and Post Holdings Inc. Joining Dietrich on his panel was an in-house attorney from Herbalife.
Dietrich is a partner at Barley Snyder providing strategic advice for businesses in the food processing and agricultural industry, financial institutions and governments in a number of areas, including organization and governance and the structuring, negotiation, and closing of corporate and commercial financial transactions. He chairs Barley Snyder’s Food & Agribusiness practice, and was managing partner at Barley Snyder from 2008 to 2013.
About Barley Snyder
Barley Snyder is a law firm based in central Pennsylvania with nearly 80 attorneys practicing from offices located in Lancaster, York, Reading, Malvern and Hanover, Pa., and Hunt Valley, Md. The firm serves businesses, individuals and organizations in all major areas of civil law including: business, employment, immigration, employee benefits, finance & creditors’ rights, intellectual property, litigation, estate planning and administration, real estate, tax, construction, environment and energy, health care, education, municipal authority, and food and agribusiness. www.barley.com | @BarleySnyder