Food & Beverage

  • January 5, 2017

    Insurer Needn't Cover $22M Award In Pizzeria Sex Assault

    Century Surety Co. doesn't have to cover a nearly $22 million award won by a woman who sued the owner of Dallas-area restaurant Pastazios Pizza Inc. for sexually assaulting her after serving her multiple rounds of beer and whiskey under the pretext of a job interview, a Texas federal judge ruled Wednesday.

  • January 5, 2017

    Post-Its Should Stick In Texas Roadhouse Trial, EEOC Says

    The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission told a Massachusetts federal court Thursday to reject Texas Roadhouse’s attempt to block the agency from discussing sticky notes attached to unsuccessful job applications in an upcoming trial over allegations that the steakhouse chain engaged in pervasive age discrimination.

  • January 5, 2017

    Port Of Portland Hits Monsanto With PCB Suit

    The Port of Portland on Wednesday became the 10th public entity to pile onto a string of lawsuits trying to peg Monsanto Corp. with liability for the cleanup of polychlorinated biphenyls, a class of toxic and once-ubiquitous chemicals the company allegedly kept manufacturing even after it knew they would end up accumulating in the environment.

  • January 5, 2017

    7th Circ. Denies Cert. To Vacation-Pay Class Against Darden

    Darden Restaurants Inc. dodged a putative class action concerning vacation time pay when the Seventh Circuit on Thursday denied a worker’s bid to revive a suit against the restaurant chain, saying the question raised is not common enough for a class.

  • January 5, 2017

    China Mengniu Readies $827M Buyout Offer For Modern Dairy

    China Mengniu Dairy Co. Ltd. is set to buy out China Modern Dairy Holdings Ltd. in a HK$6.4 billion ($827 million) deal after it increased its ownership in the Hong Kong-listed dairy farming company by nabbing a stake from a private equity investor, as China Mengniu looks to strengthen its high-end dairy offerings, according to a Thursday regulatory filing.

  • January 5, 2017

    Trustee Blasts Roust For 'Unprecedented Speed' In Ch. 11

    A U.S. Trustee has urged a Manhattan bankruptcy judge to deny the prepackaged Chapter 11 plan submitted by vodka producer Roust Corp. with its bankruptcy petition last week, saying that the company is moving at an “unprecedented speed” by seeking confirmation at its first-day hearing on Friday.

  • January 5, 2017

    Coca-Cola, Trade Group Sued Over False Sugary Drink Ads

    A lawsuit launched in California federal court on Wednesday against Coca-Cola by nonprofit group The Praxis Project claims the drink maker engaged in a massive false advertising campaign aimed at hiding the severe negative health consequences of consuming sugary beverages from the public.

  • January 5, 2017

    Patrón Gets 'Portón' Trademark Killed At TTAB

    The maker of Patrón tequila won a ruling Wednesday at the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board canceling a trademark registration for a “Portón” line of brandy.

  • January 4, 2017

    Bankrupt Transmar Allowed To Use Its Cash For A Week

    A New York bankruptcy judge at an expedited hearing Wednesday gave emergency approval for cocoa trader Transmar Group to use cash collateral to keep the lights on, but held off on full approval to make sure all relevant parties have been notified.

  • January 4, 2017

    Food Processing Cos. Dodge Modified Corn Export Suit

    An Illinois federal judge on Wednesday dismissed a mass action brought by a group of farmers against Archer Daniels Midland and several other companies over an export snafu that led to a decline in corn prices, saying the bulk of their claims were preempted by federal law.

  • January 4, 2017

    Wonder Fuel Drink Looks To Preempt Pom Wonderful TM Suit

    A coconut oil-based drink manufacturer filed a complaint against Pom Wonderful in California federal court on Tuesday seeking clearance to use its “Wonder Fuel” brand following trademark infringement allegations.

  • January 4, 2017

    Garden Fresh Ch. 11 Sale Looks Murky To Landlords

    Landlords of restaurant sites operated by Garden Fresh Restaurant Intermediate Holding LLC are cooking up a fight over the sale of their leases, arguing in a flurry of Delaware court filings that the bankrupt restaurant chain owner failed to provide the required deal assurances.

  • January 4, 2017

    Veterinarians Accuse Dairy Farm Of Trafficking Scheme

    A group of retired veterinarians from Mexico filed a complaint against an Idaho dairy farm in federal court on Tuesday, alleging they were illegally lured to the U.S. under the promise of professional work as animal scientists but instead ended up being exploited in a human trafficking scheme.

  • January 4, 2017

    Nestle Slapped With False Ad Suit For Underfilled Raisinets

    Nestle was slapped with a proposed class action in California federal court on Tuesday by a consumer alleging the food and drink company "recklessly" underfills its Raisinets boxes, deceiving customers.

  • January 4, 2017

    Kellogg Beats Waffle-Worker's FMLA Suit At 6th Circ.

    The Sixth Circuit ruled Wednesday that Kellogg USA Inc. didn't violate the Family and Medical Leave Act when it terminated an employee for unexcused absences, saying a shop steward's affidavit claiming the machine operator was disciplined more severely than others was not admissible evidence.

  • January 4, 2017

    New Zealand OKs US Turkey Imports

    New Zealand has approved the import of U.S. turkey meat after two years of negotiation, U.S. poultry growers associations announced Tuesday.

  • January 4, 2017

    Nonprofit Director Cops To $1.5M Child Food Scam

    A Tennessee woman on Tuesday admitted to swindling the state’s child care food program out of $1.5 million by fudging the amount of meals served to children and listing fictitious children’s names on reimbursement documents.

  • January 4, 2017

    Judge Filets Price-Fixing Claims In Seafood MDL

    A California federal judge overseeing multidistrict litigation concerning an alleged price-fixing conspiracy in the seafood industry on Tuesday dismissed claims regarding packaged seafood but allowed most accusations of rigging the tuna market to continue.

  • January 4, 2017

    Safeway, Insurer Seek Quick Wins In Shooting Coverage Row

    Seneca Insurance Company on Tuesday pushed for Georgia judge to quickly conclude it owed no coverage towards a man’s underlying suit against Safeway after being shot in its parking lot, while the grocery story chain maintained its policy still applies.

  • January 4, 2017

    MF Global Says Farmers Co-Op Owes $1.7M For Trades

    MF Global Holding Ltd. filed an adversary bankruptcy suit on Tuesday alleging that a farming cooperative owes it $1.7 million for gains on a portfolio of over-the-counter derivatives, after the co-op failed to promptly terminate the trades when MF Global filed for bankruptcy.

Expert Analysis

  • NY's Under-The-Radar Employment Developments: Fall 2016

    Cindy Schmitt Minniti

    From new minimum wage rules to the recent adoption of statewide paid family leave, New York state and city employers have had their hands full over the past several months. Given all of this, some employment-related developments were bound to slip through the cracks, say Cindy Schmitt Minniti and Mark Goldstein of Reed Smith LLP.

  • REVIEW: The Missing American Jury

    Judge William Young

    Face it, the American jury system is dying. The arguments Professor Suja Thomas makes in her new book deserve consideration by everyone interested in how our government actually works and how it might recapture the unifying communitarian experience of direct democracy and actual trial by one’s peers, says U.S. District Court Judge William Young of the District of Massachusetts.

  • Trump And Labor Relations In The Hospitality Industry

    Dana A. Kravetz

    In a clear departure from the policies of the Obama administration, President-elect Donald Trump is not expected to favor federal labor and employment agency activism in employment-related matters. Restaurant and hotel owners, operators, and franchisors should watch agency appointments and pending federal lawsuits closely, as they will have a substantial impact on business, says Dana Kravetz of Michelman & Robinson LLP.

  • A Likely Shift On Joint Employment Policies Ahead

    Gina M. Roccanova

    As several federal agencies have recently expanded their definition of "joint employer," employees have a broader range of alternatives to seek redress for discrimination, harassment, wage and hour, and other labor law claims. Gina Roccanova of Meyers Nave Riback Silver & Wilson PLC explains what employers should focus on with the likely change in priorities that the incoming administration will bring.

  • Big Tax Grab Risks Nipping Cannabis Industry In The Bud

    Michael Chernis

    California's Proposition 64 recently legalized recreational marijuana in the state, and for many policymakers, one of its major attractions was its promise as a new revenue source for perpetually underfunded operations. But heavy-handed new taxes — which some local jurisdictions are already countenancing — could throttle the promising new cannabis industry, says Michael Chernis of the Chernis Law Group.

  • Avoiding Law Firm BYOD Risks: Tips For Securing Devices

    Everett Monroe

    Many believe that the solutions to the security problems created by using smartphones for work are primarily technological, but a much larger piece of the puzzle involves the human factor. To achieve reasonable security around mobile devices, law firms must go back to basics — clear policies, effective training and thoughtful oversight, says Everett Monroe of Hanson Bridgett LLP.

  • Tobacco Trial Sheds Light On Punitive Damages Process

    Mitchell Morris

    A Florida jury recently ordered R.J. Reynolds to pay over $8 million in compensatory damages to a man for the smoking-related death of his wife. The next day, in a “Phase II” proceeding, the jury awarded $20 million in punitive damages. The case provides rare insight into the challenges and considerations of punitive damages trials for defendants, says Mitchell Morris of McGuireWoods LLP.

  • 4 Ways Lawyers Can Improve Their Marketing

    Mike Mellor

    Attorneys may not realize the breadth of services that their marketing, design and library teams offer. One of the things I like to do when attorneys start at our firm is give them a download of the kinds of problems we can solve for them so they know how to work with us most effectively, says Mike Mellor, director of marketing at Pryor Cashman LLP.

  • Recipe For Primary Jurisdiction Goes 'Natural'

    James P. Muehlberger

    Last year the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced a formal request for comments to determine if “natural” should be formally defined and, if so, what that definition should be. This change in the FDA’s position has led at least 11 courts to stay litigation involving the term until the agency completes its regulatory proceeding, and the trend is likely to continue, say James Muehlberger and Elizabeth Fessler of Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP.

  • Beyond Bean Counting: How Legal Can Add True Value

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    For legal departments to stay in front of the crowd, cost-cutting alone is not enough. Neither is claims-driven revenue generation, nor running endless analytics of outside legal spend. This is short-term, passive, scarcity-based thinking that keeps legal departments from offering their corporate clients the greatest possible value — competitive advantage, says David Wallace of Herbert Smith Freehills LLP.