The FDA warns food start-up Hampton Creek: You can’t call it “mayo” if it’s not mayonnaise

Uh Oh.

In an official warning letter dated August 12 and posted today (Aug. 25), the Food and Drug Administration lists four “significant violations” that the food company (or is it a tech company?) must fix before the end of the month. The biggest issue raised by the regulatory agency is the same one that Unilever, maker of Hellmann’s Mayonnaise, tried to sue Hampton Creek for in 2014: You can’t call a product “Just Mayo” if it’s not mayonnaise—and that means it has to contain eggs.

Tetrick told Quartz that Hampton Creek product labels and ingredients had been “looked at” and approved several times—but evidently not by people familiar with FDA regulations. The company previously had to correct its labeling to list “lemon juice concentrate” as an ingredient, rather than just “lemon juice.”

The FDA notice also said that Hampton Creek’s claims about Just Mayo being cholesterol-free are “unauthorized,” and that its nutrition labels do not have the required footnotes.

Tetrick tells Quartz that he “had a really good call with the FDA earlier today,” and does not anticipate having to change the name of Just Mayo. He says “the FDA cares a lot about sustainable food” and the Hampton Creek team is looking forward to having “a productive conversation” with the regulators, through which both parties, he’s sure, will “find some common ground.”

Source: Quartz

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