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SEC. 16C. The Commissioner of Food and Agriculture shall issue a certificate of registration for a dairy farm which, upon inspection made by him within thirty days prior to the date of issuance of such certificate, clearly indicates satisfactory compliance with the requirements as to milk standards and dairy farm inspection provided for in section 12. The certificates of registration for any given registration year shall be plainly distinguishable by color from those issued during immediately preceding years. Each dairy farm registered by the Commissioner of Food and Agriculture shall receive without cost a numbered certificate of registration which shall while in effect, be posted in a conspicuous place at all times on said farm. Each certificate of registration shall expire on the following June thirtieth. An annual application for renewal thereof shall be made to the Commissioner not later than the preceding May thirty-first on forms furnished by the Commissioner. If a certificate of registration is lost a duplicate copy may be obtained from the Commissioner of Food and Agriculture upon written application and at a cost of fifty cents each. The Commissioner of Food and Agriculture shall also from time to time renew a certificate of registration, provided that he has made, in the case of each renewal, at least two inspections of the dairy farm involved within one year prior thereto and has thereby determined that continuing compliance with the requirements of section 12 is being maintained. The Commissioner of Food and Agriculture may accept, as a basis for the issuance or renewal of certificates of registration, the inspection reports of milk inspectors within the Commonwealth with respect to farms inspected by them; provided that such reports certify that such farms maintain compliance with said requirements.
Any other provision of law to the contrary notwithstanding, in the case of farms located without the Commonwealth, the Commissioner of Food and Agriculture shall issue certificates of registration to farms that are certified to him as being in compliance with the requirements of section 12 by a state agency having authority similar to his in the state in which the farm is located, provided that said state agency is certified by the Public Health Service of the United States Department of Health, Education and Welfare as being qualified to participate in the National Conference on Interstate Milk Shipments, and provided further that said duly authorized state regulatory agency has first stipulated in writing to the Commissioner that it will, in the issuance and renewal of certificates of registration or like authorization under its own dairy farm inspection program,
similarly accept inspection reports made by the Commissioner of Food and Agriculture with respect to farms located within the Commonwealth.
The Commissioner of Food and Agriculture may, based upon reasonable information alleging violations by a dairy farm, of the regulations adopted pursuant to the provisions of section 12 of this chapter, cause an investigation to be made to determine the validity of the violations. If the Commissioner determines that the violation of the regulations constitutes a hazard to health on the basis of reasonable evidence, he shall forthwith withdraw, pursuant to appropriate procedures, the registration of said dairy farm. He shallo immediately notify the Department of Public Health of the alleged violations and the results of the subsequent investigation which he may have instituted.
If the dairy farm from which the registration has been withdrawn is located without the Commonwealth, the Commissioner may accept information for re-registration as provided for registration in this section or he may cause an inspection to be made by an investigator of his department to determine if said farm has been brought into compliance with the regulations.
SEC. 9. Section 16J of said Chapter 94 as amended is hereby amended by deleting the words, “milk regulation board” and inserting thereof, the words “Department of Public Health”.
Sec. 10. Chapter 94, Section 16L of the General Laws, is hereby repealed and the following new section inserted in place thereof:
Sec. 16L. No person shall sell, exchange, deliver or have in his possession with intent to sell, exchange or deliver milk shipped into the Commonwealth from a milk plant, receiving station or pasteurization plent, unless said milk plant receiving station or pasteurization plant has been licensed by the Department of Public Health.
Whoever sells, exchanges or delivers or has in his possession with intent to sell, exchange or deliver milk shipped into the Commonwealth from a milk plant, receiving station or pasteurization plant, which has not been licensed by the Department of Public Health, shall be punished for a first offense by a fine of not less than five hundred nor more than one thousand dollars, for a second offense by a fine of not less than one thousand nor more than five thousand dollars or for a subsequent offense by a fine of five thousand dollars or by imprisonment of not less than six months.
The Department of Public Health may accept as a basis for licensing such plants located without the Commonwealth certification that said establishments are in compliance with the requirements of section 12 by a state agency having authority similar to it in the state in which said establishment is located, provided that said state agency is certified by the United States Public Health Service of the United States Department of Health, Education and Welfare as being qualified to participate in the National Conference on Interstate Milk Shipments.
Sec. 11. Said Chapter 94 is hereby further amended by striking out section 48D, inserted by section 8 of Chapter 757 of the Acts of 1955, and inserting in place thereof the following section:
Sec. 48D. No person shall blend milk and cream for sale except in an establishment holding a pasteurization plant license. Whoever violates any provision of this section shall be punished by a fine of not less than twenty-five dollars nor more than one hundred dollars for each offense.
SEC. 12. Sections 12A, 12B, 13, 13B, 13C, 16H, 16K, 17, 17A, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 46, 47, 48B, 48C, and 48E of said Chapter 94 are hereby repealed.
EXHIBIT 12—AN ACT TO AMEND THE UNIT PRICING
THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS
In the Year One Thousand Nine Hundred and Seventy-Five
AN ACT To amend the unit pricing law Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:
SEC. 1. Section 115A of the General Laws is hereby amended by adding after the first sentence, the following new sentence:
The Council may, by regulation, require that unit prices shall appear in all places where item prices appear for packaged commodities regulated in accordance with this section.
THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS,
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
State House, Boston, Mass., December 4, 1975. The Honorable GEORGE McGOVERN, Chairman, Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs, U.S.
Senate, Washington, D.C. DEAR SENATOR MCGOVERN: This letter is in response to a request made by a member of your staff concerning the experiences of the Commonwealth's Legislative Commission on Food Marketing. Prior to any comments, I believe it first appropriate to specify the structure, genesis and objectives of the Food Commission.
In July 1974, Representative Peter Velis and I became very concerned about the operation of supermarkets and their consequent impact on consumers. It was a paramount concern to us because prices in general were rising and then falling, but to the best of our information, in the supermarket food prices only rose. In addition, our concern was compounded by re-pricing and by the advent of the universal product code system. To be sure we felt that the supermarket was in a state of flux and at best consumers would fare no better when all the dust had settled.
The Commission, once established by the General Court, and fully staffed with the Governor's appointees, undertook a large scale program of food hearings across the Commonwealth. The express intent of these hearings was to go out to the consumers and ask them about the problems, concerns and difficulties they experience in food markets. Scheduled hearings ranged across the state and included evening sessions to allow those who couldn't come during the working day.
Also invited to the food hearings were representatives from the industry so they could present their viewpoint on what was happening and express their concern and the extent to which they felt they were responsible.
At best, we found that the industry provided very little information of any value and at worst they mislead and kept uninformed the members of the Commission. It is very clear that the food retailing industry has no desire either to provide the public with a clear picture of what they do or reveal the basis for their pricing and marketing decisions. It is equally clear that this information is necessary if the public sector is to respond to the food industry and formulate public policy which serves both public and private domains.
The report which I have sent to you under separate cover portrays, in I believe abundant detail, the depth and commitment of the special Commission's desire to plumb internal operations and mechanisms of the food industry. Equally specific is the extent to which the industry was able to prevent the Commission from gathering such information. Being that as it may, the Commission nevertheless felt that legislation and similar steps were appropriate and was able to accumulate sufficient data to support such actions.
Specifically, the Commission felt that the milk industry, unit pricing, pre-ticketing of products and nutritional information would be
proper domains where sufficient information could be gathered to support legislation. Most of these concerns are appropriate at the state Jevel although I am bringing two of them to your attention since they could be acted upon nationally. The first issue is unit pricing and the second is the pre-ticketing of food products, especially bakery products. Unit pricing is a concept as well as an operation which has been in the public domain for nearly a half decade. The advantages to the consumer are obvious. It permits the person shopping in the supermarket to purchase items knowing full well the relative cost of each of them. Additionally, unit pricing cuts through the miasma of different package sizes and a variety of brands. It makes abundantly clear the fact that certain items are much more expensive, relatively speaking, than other items and permits the consumer to know the actual cost of the items.
The Commission endorsed the concept and has filed legislation to the effect which would permit the state agency, the Consumers' Council, to promulgate regulations with regard to requiring unit pricing in the printed media. We believe this is an especially important step particularly in light of recent economic developments. Everyone is now being told that they should drive as little as possible and conserve on fuel and energy. They are being directed to make up their shopping list based upon newspaper advertisements. Bringing these two factors together, the Commission believed that by providing unit pricing information in advertising, consumers would be able to decipher the maze of claims and counterclaims and actually critically assess which reported food prices were actually the best value for the dollar. The Commission believes very strongly that this legislation should be passed at the state level and recommends to the Committee that you consider similar steps in the form of federal legislation. The Commission is of the opinion that pre-ticketing of red prices was also an area that could be dealt with at the national level. The specific concern in this instance is that bakery products cross State lines and are manufactured by a company which is not engaged in retail business. Price marking creates price rigidity in said products. This leads to what one might call a price setting situation in bakery products. The Commission believes that tends to discourage competition, keep prices artificially high at levels established by manufacturers and not dictated by local market conditions and prohibits consumers from actually realizing any savings on the items. Given as a presumption that competition will serve the consumer and the industry, we find this restriction in competition to be detrimental to both interests. It does serve as an aid to manufacturers since it permits them to keep their prices high and discourages individual prices marketing at the retail level. We find the situation to be onerous and hope that your Committee will take steps to consider legislation to change the situation.
In the above paragraphs I have provided you with some of my attitudes and views as extracted from the Commission's deliberations with regard to the retail food marketing situation. I hope they prove useful to you and will be pleased to help you and your Committee in any future efforts along these lines as you may see fit.
ANTHONY M. GALLUGI,
Chairman, Special Legislative Commission on Food.