Deco ’18 Opens April 7
To date, 32 exhibitors have reserved space for the Deco ’18 trade show.
SGCDpro’s annual Deco trade show and conference kicks off April 7 at the Hilton Easton in Columbus, Ohio. The conference features three days of technical and informational sessions with exhibits on Sunday afternoon.
Saturday’s sessions focus on production and processes, with presentations on both fired and cured technology. These sessions will feature presentations from four new companies and six first-time speakers. A welcome reception will be held following Saturday’s sessions.
The annual awards breakfast will be held on Sunday, following the society’s Annual Meeting of Members; new board members will be installed during the meeting. Walt Sanders, SGCDpro legislative liaison, will update members on legislative initiatives, and noted Proposition 65 attorney Carol Brophy will explain new labeling regulations that take effect in August.
To date, 32 exhibitors have reserved space for the trade show, which will be held Sunday afternoon. Lunch will be served in the exhibit hall, and an afternoon reception in the hall will conclude the day’s activities. Keynote speaker Marc Paulenich will address attendees on Monday morning, followed by additional marketing speakers. Paulenich will present findings from a glass packaging study conducted on behalf of SGCDpro corporate member Owens-Illinois (O-I). Future Deco meetings are slated for Indianapolis in 2019, Cleveland in 2020 and Pittsburgh in 2021.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Guidance on Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP) sets new regulations under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). The FDA had suggested that products with food contact surfaces were subject to the complex rules. Sanders, who also serves as outside counsel to SGCDPro, arranged an October 30 meeting of SGCDpro representation with senior officials of the FDA to explore how to minimize the impact of FSVP on our industry.
At the meeting, the FDA reported that, as a result of meetings with industry, the agency had already decided to extend the compliance deadline to May 28, 2019, with respect to the regulations and to issue a guidance document that would address food contact surfaces, among other issues. That guidance, issued in early January, stated that the FDA “intend(s) to exercise enforcement discretion for importers of food contact substances with respect to the FSVP regulation.” In short, based on several paragraphs explaining, in detail, the rationale for their decision, the guidance concluded that “it is appropriate to consider the exercise of our enforcement discretion to not require importers of food contact substances to meet FSVP requirements.”
The guidance stated that the FDA decision was based on “consideration of comments and information provided by industry and other interested parties and the issues involved.” Those issues included “certain characteristics related to the nature of food contact substances, FDA’s premarket review/oversight of food contact substances, and the regulatory framework for such substances.” SGCDpro has emailed members a copy of the guidance, and Sanders is preparing comments on the document.
It is important to note that the introduction to the guidance states that it is consistent with the FDA’s good guidance practices regulation, and that it is immediately effective because the FDA has determined that prior public participation is not feasible or appropriate. However, “FDA’s guidance documents, including this guidance, do not establish legally enforceable responsibilities. Instead, guidances describe the agency’s current thinking on a topic and should be viewed only as recommendations, unless specific regulatory or statutory requirements are cited. The use of the word should in agency guidances means that something is suggested or recommended, but not required.”
In other legislative news, on November 20, 2017, California’s Office of Administrative Law approved amendments to Title 27, California Code of Regulations, Article 6, Clear and Reasonable Warnings.* This action amends certain provisions of Proposition 65 that will go into effect on August 30, 2018.
Until August 30, businesses may opt to provide safe harbor warnings using the new methods and content or continue to use their existing warnings during the phase-in period. After August 30, all businesses that wish to take advantage of the safe harbor provisions of the regulations will need to use the warning methods and content in these new sections. At Deco ’18, Brophy will provide in-depth details regarding how these amendments will affect glass and ceramic decorators.
Any views or opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not represent those of Ceramic Industry, its staff, Editorial Advisory Board or BNP Media.