Attention Food and Beverage Manufacturers: "Natural" Claims, Risks and How to Avoid Them

(187 Ratings)

Produced on: May 04, 2015

Course Format On Demand Audio

Taught by


Course Description

Time 59 minutes
Difficulty Intermediate

Walk the aisles of any grocery store, and the words will pop up before your eyes: “Natural!” “All-Natural!” “Gluten-Free!” The labels can be confusing for consumers, and their use can have major consequences for food and beverage manufacturers. Regulatory agencies, including the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are paying close attention, and the result is a legal minefield. 


This program addresses:

  • How the regulatory agencies define (or fail to clearly define) various food claims
  • Actions regulatory agencies have taken against “violators”
  • How these claims have attracted the attention of consumer groups, the media, the National Advertising Division (“NAD”), trade and certification groups  and the class action bar
  • The new wave of food labeling litigation, including noteworthy settlements
  • What manufacturers need to know to mitigate their risk


While food claims such of “Natural” and  “All Natural,” have entered the mainstream, it is still unclear on how they can and can’t be used in labeling, advertising and promotions.  In addition to the regulatory agencies, the use of these claims has attracted the attention of the NAD, consumer advocacy groups, the media, and the class action bar.  Numerous companies have paid out millions of dollars to settle class action lawsuits involving the use of certain food claims.  


In spite of the lack of clarity, Josephine Belli explains how manufacturers-marketers can mitigate their risk. 


Learning Objectives: 


I.   Identify how various regulatory agencies define such claims as “Natural” 

II.  Discover what litigation and FDA warning letters teach us about what is and what is not considered “Natural”

III. Learn how the NAD, consumer advocacy groups and the media have addressed alleged misuse of food claims

IV. Recognize how regulatory agencies are not adverse to the use of “Natural” claims and manufactures-marketers can look to guidance in order to mitigate any risks


Josephine Belli

Goldberg Segalla LLP

Josephine Belli, partner in the firm’s New York, New York office, has enjoyed a diverse legal career practicing as a law clerk to a Supreme Court judge, an associate in a law firm specializing in international business, and as in-house counsel at a global manufacturer and marketer of drugs, medical devices, cosmetics, and personal care products.


Her education (both in the United States and abroad), foreign language skills in Italian, French, Spanish, and Greek, and varied experience addressing the corporate, transactional, regulatory, and business development needs of domestic and international entities gives Jo a global perspective that enhances her service to clients. Jo has represented global companies in a variety of industries, and has significant experience working with clients in regulated industries including pharmaceuticals, medical devices, cosmetics, supplements, food, wine, and spirits. 


Jo’s regulatory experience includes addressing Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), and European Community regulations involving the launch and marketing of regulated products, including testing, packaging, labeling, claim substantiation, regulatory compliance, promotions, advertising, and safety.


Jo also works with entertainment industry clients on rights clearances, celebrity endorsements, production deals, talent contract negotiations, content licensing, intellectual property protection, and compliance with privacy laws.



  • Consul General of Italy Award for Outstanding Service to the Italian-American Community
  • Brooklyn Committee of Italian Culture Month Award for Service to the Italian-American Community
  • Queens Committee of Italian Culture Month Award for Service to the Italian-American Community
  • Professional Affiliations
  • American Bar Association: International Law Section
  • New York State Bar Association: Food, Drug and Cosmetic Law and Corporate Counsel
  • Columbian Lawyers Association
  • Association of Corporate Counsel: Board of Directors; former member of the editorial board: ACC Docket; Advertising; Labor and Employment Committees
  • Association of National Advertisers (ANA)
  • Admitted to Practice
  • New York State
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern and Southern Districts of New York
  • Court of International Trade
  • Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • Civic Activities
  • Legal Counsel: Italian Heritage and Culture Committee of NY, Inc.
  • Italian American Committee on Education
  • St. John's University Alumni Association-Manhattan Chapter



Italian, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Greek



St John's University School of Law and Institute of Comparative Law

University of Rome, JD, 1986 (Dean's List)

New York University, Doctoral Studies in Italian Literature

Queens College, University of Bologna, Italy and University of Madrid, Spain, B.A./M.A


sosi v.

Very informative presentation. Learned from the presenter.

Chris R.

Fascinating Seminar

Robert B.


Alexandra F.

Interesting content, great presentation. Thank you.

Joanna R.

One of the best courses

Suzanne R.

Very informative.

Kenneth W.

honestly better than I thought it wouldbe

Bobak H.

Really liked the materials.

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$ 59 Food, Beverage, & Agriculture In Stock


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