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Food & Agriculture

ArentFox Schiff’s Food & Agriculture team is a destination shop for companies operating across the supply chain. Our lawyers are committed to providing sustainable business solutions from production to post-market.

Our Work

The Food & Agriculture team is a cross-disciplinary group of attorneys, regulatory advisors, and scientists who provide tailored legal, regulatory, and business solutions for food, agriculture, and beverage companies and the businesses that support them. We represent developers, manufacturers, distributors, and retailers of foods and food-related products, managing the needs of companies across the supply chain in the development, manufacture, distribution, and sale of conventional foods and beverages, dietary supplements, animal feed and pet food, agricultural biotechnology products, and the ingredients used in such products. In addition, we counsel related industry trade organizations, including some of the leading agriculture trade associations with an interest in agricultural technology.

Our attorneys work closely with clients throughout the entire product life cycle, from development of ingredients to any necessary pre-market authorizations, through product positioning and launch, and, finally, in defense of threatened post-launch enforcement or legal actions. We advise clients on food and agriculture transactions, regulatory compliance, product development, legislative initiatives, and patent protection and clearance; participate in USDA, FDA, and EPA rule-making and adjudicatory proceedings; respond to federal and state enforcement efforts; and handle related civil and criminal litigation.

Our capabilities are as varied as the sectors we serve. Given ArentFox Schiff’s blend of legal, regulatory, legislative, and scientific experience and our comprehensive and operational understanding of the food and agriculture landscape, we are positioned to help domestic and foreign companies bring their products to market and keep them there. From regulatory compliance to intellectual property, to corporate, real estate, and litigation work, we live in this space and manage the evolving legal, regulatory, legislative, scientific, and business needs of our clients.

How We Help

Nationally Recognized Advisors on a Range of Products

  • Agricultural technology products, including nitrogen-producing microbes, salmon that grow more quickly, apples that do not turn brown when sliced, hornless dairy cattle, and disease-resistant potatoes
  • Alcohol and non-alcohol beverages
  • Animal feed and health products
  • Aquaculture, fish, and seafood
  • Dairy, egg products, beef, pork, and poultry
  • Dietary supplements and dietary ingredients
  • Enzymes, microbials, and plant and animal products of biotechnology, nanotechnology, genome editing, and other emerging technologies
  • Food and food ingredients
  • Indoor agriculture products
  • Pesticides, fertilizers, and other crop inputs
  • Pet food and treat products
  • Seeds and commodity crops

Tailored Legal, Regulatory, and Business Solutions

  • Develop strategies for ingredient and product development
  • Secure any necessary pre-market ingredient authorizations
  • Advise on compliance with FSMA and other GMP requirements in production of agricultural products, foods, dietary supplements, and pet food products
  • Counsel both domestic and foreign clients on their responsibilities and obligations under the laws and regulations enforced by the FDA, USDA, EPA, FTC, Customs, and state and foreign regulatory authorities
  • Coordinate GRAS self-determinations, including overseeing toxicology testing of product ingredients, reviewing and summarizing available safety data, and convening expert panel reviews
  • Develop compliant advertising, labeling, and promotional strategies
  • Prepare for and participate in FDA inspections, and defend threatened enforcement actions
  • Prepare Food Contact Notification Letters for indirect food additives
  • Navigate USDA’s FSIS and APHIS regulations
  • Assist in development of legislative and regulatory initiatives for emerging technologies
  • Advise on pesticides and other agricultural protection products and residue tolerances regulated by the EPA, Codex Alimentarius, FDA, and EU
  • Counsel on compliance with disclosure requirements for bioengineered foods
  • Advise on alcohol beverage matters, including importation, distribution, and federal and state licensing/permitting
  • Obtain, enforce, and defend patents related to agricultural and food products and methods of making the same
  • Resolve shipment delays at ports of entry
  • Defend Proposition 65 and consumer class action complaints
  • Conduct regulatory due diligence on potential acquisition targets
  • Prepare claim substantiation reports for food and dietary supplement products
  • Advise federal and state legislators and regulators on development of all current laws and regulations governing biotechnology products
  • Coordinate government relations and public relations strategies in response to adverse product information
  • Draft and implement standard operating procedures for responding to adverse product information, including how to coordinate effective product recalls, market withdrawals, and stock recoveries
  • Coordinate product recalls and crisis management strategies
  • Advise on protection of data use and compensation rights under federal and state law

Key Contacts