Restaurants & Food Industry

Consumer Advisory on Menu

CONSUMER ADVISORY

Applicability: The consumer advisory is intended to apply to all food establishments where ready-to-eat (RTE) raw or undercooked animal foods or RTE foods containing raw or undercooked animal foods are sold or served to the public. §46.423

Language: The language for the consumer advisory is to be in the same language as the menu. For example, if the menu is written in English, the consumer advisory would have to be in English. If the menu is written in French only, then the consumer advisory would have to be in French. If the menu is in dual languages, then the consumer advisory should be in dual languages.

Text size: Text size for hand held menus or table tents should be equivalent to 11 points (this example is 11-point text).

The consumer advisory is a critical item: The lack of a consumer advisory when necessary is considered a risk factor.

How to comply with consumer advisory:

  1. Disclosure: Disclose what items may be undercooked.
    a.  What items are affected?
         i.  Use leading statements (raw, rare, "cooked to order") OR
         ii. Asterisk (*) the foods in question (New York Strip Steak*) AND

             b.  Adjust menu to reflect the above OR in the absence of a menu, provide in written format to consumer via a pamphlet

        2.   Reminder: The goal of the reminder is to inform the consumer of the risks of eating raw or undercooked foods. This can be accomplished by utilizing reminder statements on the menu, placard, table tent, or by other written means OR by utilizing a brochure or pamphlet. The statement would be placed in another location on the menu, but reference the asterisked items. Examples:

            a.   * "Consuming raw or undercooked meats, poultry, seafood, shellfish, or eggs may increase your risk of foodborne illness, especially if you have certain medical conditions."
            b.   * "Consuming raw or undercooked meats, poultry, seafood, shellfish or eggs may increase your risk of foodborne illness."
            c.   When using a pamphlet as a reminder: * "Regarding the safety of these items, written information is available upon request. "
For guidance on utilizing a pamphlet, please see you sanitarian. More detailed document on complying with consumer advisory is available on the web site www.agriculture.state.pa.us or by asking your sanitarian.


This information is distributed by Erie County Department of Health, 606 W. 2nd Street, Erie, PA 16507, 814-451-6700, www.ecdh.org