Brian Sylvester, J.D., is a Partner in Perkins Coie LLP's Washington D.C. office and a former Attorney-Advisor at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA's) Marketing, Regulatory, and Food Safety Programs Division's Office of the General Counsel. At Perkins Coie, Brian focuses his practice on regulatory matters before the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the USDA, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), and analogous state regulatory bodies. He is a leading authority on food technology regulation and serves as a trusted advisor to global brands, startups, life science companies, investors, and trade associations.
Brian is a prolific author and frequent speaker at industry-leading events in the U.S., the EU, Israel, and other parts of the world. He is regularly called upon to offer insights on trending legal issues by preeminent industry and global publications. He holds a J.D. from Cornell Law School and a Bachelor's degree in Psychological and Brain Sciences from Dartmouth College.
- How the 2023 California Food Safety Act, which bans several additives common in processed foods, might affect companies’ food formulations nationwide
- Economic and other logistical challenges for companies adjusting for the California Food Safety Act and the feasibility of achieving compliance by the January 2027 deadline
- Other food additives and packaging chemicals under increasing scrutiny that companies may want to begin addressing in their products in light of class-action lawsuits
- Precedents set by the California Food Safety Act for other states to enact similar bans and for consumer beliefs to more heavily influence food law
- How the California Food Safety Act may be influencing the conversation around food additives legislation at FDA, evidenced by recent statements from the agency about two chemicals banned by the legislation
- The likelihood of industry lobbying and litigation in response to the California Food Safety Act, and the responses already made by industry and consumer groups criticizing the precedent it sets of circumventing science-based decision-making
- Brian’s thoughts on the actual contribution of the California Food Safety Act to food safety and public health, and how the ban was shaped by advocacy groups and consumers
- The likelihood of a patchwork of state regulations following the California Food Safety Act and the need for FDA to step in to prevent conflicting food additives regulation nationwide
- Possible implications if New York Senate Bill A6424 were to pass, which is pending legislation that is nearly identical to the original draft of the California Food Safety Act.
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