On its way to the Senate, after getting approved by the house, is a bill that would require all states to have uniform food labeling laws. In addition to the standard information that is nationally regulated, like calories, fat and trans-fats, states can currently pass laws to require food produced in their state to have additional information on the packaging. Uncommon allergens, potentially toxic substances and various food additives are commonly required to be revealed in this way.
Food producers and grocers support the bill because they would have a standard set of expectations to meet, but some consumers are unhappy that some information currently on their state's food labels will be removed. Opponents of the bill say that it will affect as many as 200 state laws across the country. While an amendment has already been added to keep mercury warnings in place, there are 16 states that have shellfish regulations and Arkansas and Illinois have egg-safety laws, none of which would still be required. On the surface, it seems to be a certainty that any regulations stripped from the states will be reinstated at a later time, but going through the federal process is likely to take longer and face more opposition from large lobbies than with in-state legislation. Some warnings may not make it back onto labels for a number of years, if ever, even though consumers in some states will find themselves with new warnings on their packaging.