|[BILLING CODE 6750-01]
FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION
16 CFR PART 241
REQUEST FOR COMMENT CONCERNING GUIDES FOR THE DOG AND CAT FOOD INDUSTRY
AGENCY: Federal Trade Commission.
ACTION: Request for public comment.
SUMMARY: The Federal Trade Commission ("Commission") requests public comment on the overall costs and benefits and the continuing need for its Guides for the Dog and Cat Food Industry ("the Dog and Cat Food Guides" or "the Guides"), as part of the Commission's systematic review of all current Commission regulations and guides.
DATES: Written comments will be accepted until [Insert date 60 days after date of publication in Federal Register].
ADDRESS: Mailed comments should be directed to: Secretary, Federal Trade Commission, Room H-159, 600 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580. Mailed comments should be identified as "Dog and Cat Food Guides, 16 CFR Part 241 -- Comment." E-mail comments will be accepted at [email@example.com]. Those who comment by e-mail should give a mailing address to which an acknowledgment can be sent.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jock K. Chung, Attorney, Federal Trade Commission, Washington, D.C. 20580, telephone number (202) 326-2984.
The Commission promulgated the Dog and Cat Food Guides on February 28, 1969, 34 FR 3619 (1969), under section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act ("FTC Act"), 15 U.S.C. 45.(1)
The Guides cover food for dogs or cats, including dry, semimoist, frozen, canned, and other commercial foods manufactured or marketed for consumption by domesticated dogs or cats, as well as special candy for dogs and cats, but not animal medicines or remedies. The Guides apply to any person, firm, corporation, or organization engaged in the importation, manufacture, sale or distribution of dog or cat food. In summary, the Dog and Cat Food Guides advise against:
(1) misrepresenting dog or cat food in any material respect; for example, misrepresenting the composition, form, suitability, quality, color, flavor of any dog or cat food; misrepresenting that any dog or cat food meets the dietary or nutritional needs of dogs and cats; or misrepresenting that any dog or cat food will provide medicinal or therapeutic benefits;
(2) misrepresenting that any dog or cat food is fit for human consumption or has been made under the same sanitary conditions as food for humans;
(3) misrepresenting the processing methods used in the manufacture or processing of any dog or cat food;
(4) making false statements about the conduct of competitors or about the quality of competitors' products;
(5) misrepresenting the length of time a dog or cat food company has been in business, its rank in the industry, or that it owns a laboratory or other testing facilities;
(6) using deceptive endorsements or testimonials, or deceptively claiming that any dog or cat food has received an award;
(7) offering for sale any dog or cat food when the offer is not a bona fide effort to sell the product so offered as advertised and at the advertised price;
(8) failing to include details, such as the manner in which the guarantor will perform and the identity of the guarantor, for all guarantees or warranties offered for dog or cat food; and
(9) misrepresenting the price at which any dog or cat food may be purchased.
II. REGULATORY REVIEW PROGRAM
The Commission has determined to review all current Commission rules and guides periodically. These reviews seek information about the costs and benefits of the Commission's rules and guides and their regulatory and economic impact. The information obtained assists the Commission in identifying rules and guides that warrant modification or rescission. Therefore, the Commission solicits comment on, among other things, the economic impact of and the continuing need for the Dog and Cat Food Guides; possible conflict between the Guides and state, local, or federal laws; and the effect on the Guides of any technological, economic, or other industry changes.
III. REQUEST FOR COMMENT
The Commission solicits written public comment on the following questions:
(1) Is there a continuing need for the Dog and Cat Food Guides?
(2) What changes, if any, should be made to the Guides to increase the benefits of the Guides to purchasers? How would these changes affect the costs the Guides impose on firms that conform to the Guides? How would these changes affect the benefits to purchasers?
(3) What significant burdens or costs, including costs of compliance, have the Guides imposed on firms that conform to the Guides? Have the Guides provided benefits to such firms? If so, what benefits?
(4) What changes, if any, should be made to the Guides to reduce the burdens or costs imposed on firms that conform to the Guides? How would these changes affect the benefits provided by the Guides?
(5) Do the Guides overlap or conflict with other federal, state, or local laws or regulations?
(6) Since the Guides were issued, what effects, if any, have changes in relevant technology or economic conditions had on the Guides? For example, do sellers use E-mail or the Internet to promote or sell dog or cat food products covered by the Guides? If so, in what manner? Does use of this new technology affect consumers' rights or sellers' responsibilities under the Guides?
(7) Are there private industry standards addressing the practices covered by the Guides?
(8) Are there any abuses occurring in the promotion, sale, or distribution of dog or cat food products covered by the Guides that are not dealt with in the Guides? If so, what mechanisms should be explored to address such abuses (e.g., consumer education, industry self-regulation, revisions to the Guides)?
List of Subjects in 16 CFR Part 241: Advertising, Animal food, Foods, Labeling, Pets, Trade practices.
Authority: 15 U.S.C. 41-58.
By direction of the Commission.
Donald S. Clark
1. Section 5 of the FTC Act declares unfair methods of competition and unfair or deceptive acts or practices to be unlawful.