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Do food samples require a "Not for Retail Sale" statement?

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Posted 08 December 2019 - 11:28 PM

Simple, concise answers only:

Pulling my hair out regarding food product sample labeling requirements. Does the package require a statement of "Not for Retail Sale"?

If yes - please reference the part of CFR that has this information.


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Posted 09 December 2019 - 09:38 PM

Perishable or non-perishable product?


See this previous thread, specially post # 2;




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Posted 12 December 2019 - 12:24 PM

I went through the same thing a few years ago, with samples to be distributed at a trade show.  I talked to someone at the FDA (imagine that!) and was told that you should have the company name and address, product name, and ingredient statement/declaration (including allergens) on sample products.  You don't need to label them "not for sale" (or variation thereof).

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Posted 12 December 2019 - 04:54 PM

Technically in general, if you aren't selling something, it hasn't been introduced "to commerce", so FSIS/FDA has no authority to regulate it.


Make sure the samples are produced safely and include an ingredient statement so that those with allergens/sensitivities can avoid any problematic ingredients. If you're distributing samples to large groups of people and the product is perishable, you may end up under a food retailer license with your state, but I suspect that is not your situation.



If this is a meat/egg product in the US, potentially you fall under FSIS' experimental sample guidance.


IF you are attaching this "sample" to a sold product, then it is also a sold product and must comply with all labeling.


Some additional discussion here: https://www.ifsqn.co...not-for-resale/

Austin Bouck
Owner/Consultant at Fur, Farm, and Fork.
Consulting for companies needing effective, lean food safety systems and solutions.

Subscribe to the blog at furfarmandfork.com for food safety research, insights, and analysis.

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