(a) Establishment of mandatory standard
Not later than 2 years after July 29, 2016, the Secretary shall—
(1) establish a national mandatory bioengineered food disclosure standard with respect to any bioengineered food and any food that may be bioengineered; and
(2) establish such requirements and procedures as the Secretary determines necessary to carry out the standard.
(b) Regulations (1) In general
A food may bear a disclosure that the food is bioengineered only in accordance with regulations promulgated by the Secretary in accordance with this subchapter.
A regulation promulgated by the Secretary in carrying out this subchapter shall—
(A) prohibit a food derived from an animal to be considered a bioengineered food solely because the animal consumed feed produced from, containing, or consisting of a bioengineered substance;
(B) determine the amounts of a bioengineered substance that may be present in food, as appropriate, in order for the food to be a bioengineered food;
(C) establish a process for requesting and granting a determination by the Secretary regarding other factors and conditions under which a food is considered a bioengineered food;
(D) in accordance with subsection (d), require that the form of a food disclosure under this section be a text, symbol, or electronic or digital link, but excluding Internet website Uniform Resource Locators not embedded in the link, with the disclosure option to be selected by the food manufacturer;
(E) provide alternative reasonable disclosure options for food contained in small or very small packages;
(F) in the case of small food manufacturers, provide—
(i) an implementation date that is not earlier than 1 year after the implementation date for regulations promulgated in accordance with this section; and
(ii) on-package disclosure options, in addition to those available under subparagraph (D), to be selected by the small food manufacturer, that consist of—
(I) a telephone number accompanied by appropriate language to indicate that the phone number provides access to additional information; and
(II) an Internet website maintained by the small food manufacturer in a manner consistent with subsection (d), as appropriate; and
(i) food served in a restaurant or similar retail food establishment; and
(ii) very small food manufacturers.
For the purpose of regulations promulgated and food disclosures made pursuant to paragraph (2), a bioengineered food that has successfully completed the pre-market Federal regulatory review process shall not be treated as safer than, or not as safe as, a non-bioengineered counterpart of the food solely because the food is bioengineered or produced or developed with the use of bioengineering.
(c) Study of electronic or digital link disclosure (1) In general
Not later than 1 year after July 29, 2016, the Secretary shall conduct a study to identify potential technological challenges that may impact whether consumers would have access to the bioengineering disclosure through electronic or digital disclosure methods.
(2) Public comments
In conducting the study under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall solicit and consider comments from the public.
The study conducted under paragraph (1) shall consider whether consumer access to the bioengineering disclosure through electronic or digital disclosure methods under this subchapter would be affected by the following factors:
(A) The availability of wireless Internet or cellular networks.
(B) The availability of landline telephones in stores.
(C) Challenges facing small retailers and rural retailers.
(D) The efforts that retailers and other entities have taken to address potential technology and infrastructure challenges.
(E) The costs and benefits of installing in retail stores electronic or digital link scanners or other evolving technology that provide bioengineering disclosure information.
(4) Additional disclosure options
If the Secretary determines in the study conducted under paragraph (1) that consumers, while shopping, would not have sufficient access to the bioengineering disclosure through electronic or digital disclosure methods, the Secretary, after consultation with food retailers and manufacturers, shall provide additional and comparable options to access the bioengineering disclosure.
In promulgating regulations under this section, the Secretary shall ensure that—
(1) on-package language accompanies—
(A) the electronic or digital link disclosure, indicating that the electronic or digital link will provide access to an Internet website or other landing page by stating only "Scan here for more food information", or equivalent language that only reflects technological changes; or
(B) any telephone number disclosure, indicating that the telephone number will provide access to additional information by stating only "Call for more food information.";
(2) the electronic or digital link will provide access to the bioengineering disclosure located, in a consistent and conspicuous manner, on the first product information page that appears for the product on a mobile device, Internet website, or other landing page, which shall exclude marketing and promotional information;
(3)(A) the electronic or digital link disclosure may not collect, analyze, or sell any personally identifiable information about consumers or the devices of consumers; but
(B) if information described in subparagraph (A) must be collected to carry out the purposes of this subchapter, that information shall be deleted immediately and not used for any other purpose;
(4) the electronic or digital link disclosure also includes a telephone number that provides access to the bioengineering disclosure; and
(5) the electronic or digital link disclosure is of sufficient size to be easily and effectively scanned or read by a digital device.
(e) State food labeling standards
Notwithstanding section 1639i of this title, no State or political subdivision of a State may directly or indirectly establish under any authority or continue in effect as to any food in interstate commerce any requirement relating to the labeling or disclosure of whether a food is bioengineered or was developed or produced using bioengineering for a food that is the subject of the national bioengineered food disclosure standard under this section that is not identical to the mandatory disclosure requirement under that standard.
(f) Consistency with certain laws
The Secretary shall consider establishing consistency between—
(1) the national bioengineered food disclosure standard established under this section; and
(2) the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 (7 U.S.C. 6501 et seq.) and any rules or regulations implementing that Act.
(g) Enforcement (1) Prohibited act
It shall be a prohibited act for a person to knowingly fail to make a disclosure as required under this section.
Each person subject to the mandatory disclosure requirement under this section shall maintain, and make available to the Secretary, on request, such records as the Secretary determines to be customary or reasonable in the food industry, by regulation, to establish compliance with this section.
(3) Examination and audit (A) In general
The Secretary may conduct an examination, audit, or similar activity with respect to any records required under paragraph (2).
(B) Notice and hearing
A person subject to an examination, audit, or similar activity under subparagraph (A) shall be provided notice and opportunity for a hearing on the results of any examination, audit, or similar activity.
(C) Audit results
After the notice and opportunity for a hearing under subparagraph (B), the Secretary shall make public the summary of any examination, audit, or similar activity under subparagraph (A).
(4) Recall authority
The Secretary shall have no authority to recall any food subject to this subchapter on the basis of whether the food bears a disclosure that the food is bioengineered.
REFERENCES IN TEXT The Organic Foods Production Act of 1990, referred to in subsec. (f)(2), is title XXI of Pub. L. 101–624, Nov. 28, 1990, 104 Stat. 3935, which is classified generally to chapter 94 (§6501 et seq.) of this title. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 6501 of this title and Tables.
7 U.S.C. § 1639b (2018)