Date: Sep 10, 2013
Tommy O -- Know Your Labeling Requirements

Recently, I’ve received several calls inquiring about what must be included on your shipping containers to ensure compliance with state and Federal laws.

In California and Arizona, master shipping containers for produce require three statements, often referred to as IRQ:

  1. Identify name of the commodity;
  2. Responsible party (name & address);
  3. Quantity statement (count, weight or volume)

While the USDA Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA) regulations do not require any specific marking or labeling requirements, whatever is printed on the master shipping container must be true and accurate, or you could be subject to a PACA misbranding violation. It is a violation of PACA regulations § 46.45 section 2(5) which states in part, “to misrepresent by word, act, mark, stencil, label, statement, or deed, the character, kind, grade, quality, quantity, size, pack, weight, condition, degree, or maturity, or State, country, region of origin of any perishable agricultural commodity received, shipped, sold, or offered to be sold in interstate or foreign commerce.” Make sure your shipping containers include all of the required information so you will be in compliance with the regulations.

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