Law Seminars International Presents:

A Comprehensive Two-Day Conference on

Food Law

Regulatory compliance, potential legal issues, and business development strategies for food-related businesses

July 27 & 28, 2017

Seattle, WA
Regrettably, we've had to cancel this program

Download PDF Brochure
Seattle - WA


Who Should Order

Attorneys, consultants, and business executives involved with food and beverage businesses

Why You Should Order

The Pacific Northwest's abundant natural resources often find their most satisfying expression in the tasty foods and beverages we purchase at grocery stores (or increasingly online), prepare and serve at home, or eat out with friends and family.

Behind the scenes of Norman Rockwell paintings of family table plentitude and heaping, gleaming eye-catching rows of fresh produce, an enormous array of farm-to-market food, legal infrastructure comes into play.

This first-of-its-kind food and beverage seminar puts you in the driver's seat for navigating the legal and regulatory framework to which all food and beverage businesses operating in the United States must adhere or face potentially drastic consequences, such as confronting enforcement actions by federal and state agencies that could lead to having your business shut down, being the target of private litigation as well as having your valuable, perishable inventory ordered destroyed. You will gain valuable information and insights from legal and industry experts on the basic life-cycle of a food or beverage based business.

By attending this conference, you will find yourself among an enthusiastic, legally hungry audience of food and beverage entrepreneurs and those lawyers likely to counsel companies dedicated to feeding humanity and quenching our thirst.

~ Carol A. Pratt, Ph.D., Esq. of Lee & Hayes PLLC and Paul Swanson, Esq. of Lane Powell PC, Program Co-Chairs

What You Will Learn

  • ~ Food & Drug Administration (FDA) regulation: How NOT to be a drug
  • ~ Washington's regulation of alcoholic beverages
  • ~ Navigating the federal, state and local permits necessary to launch a food-related business
  • ~ Food Safety: Food recall law and trends in personal injury liability litigation
  • ~ Private remedies for false advertising claims
  • ~ Startups: Financing and exit strategies for food-related Companies
  • ~ Intellectual property: Building brands and protecting products in compliance with FDA standards
  • ~ Marketing tips for food-related businesses

Agenda Day 1

Thursday, July 27, 2017

8:00 am

Registration Opens

8:30 am

Introduction & Overview

Framing the issues: The interplay between FDA regulations and the market issues facing participants in the industry

Paul D. Swanson, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Lane Powell PC / Seattle, WA

8:45 am

Food & Drug Administration (FDA) Regulation of Food: How NOT to be a Drug

The regulatory landscape for food, beverages, dietary supplements, and medical foods vs. Drugs:

Carol Pratt, Ph.D., Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Lee & Hayes PLLC / Vancouver, WA

Food labeling claims: The (narrow) line between nutrition, health, and qualified health claims and drug claims

Yi-Kang Hu, Ph.D, Esq.
Spectra Law Group LLC / Beaverton, OR

Substantiation of claims: FDA and FTC requirements for scientific substantiations and how to avoid doing a drug study

Carol Pratt, Ph.D., Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Lee & Hayes PLLC / Vancouver, WA

10:30 am


10:45 am

Food-Related Litigation: Private Remedies

False advertising claims as a brake on competitor advertising: Substantiation as the low hanging fruit

Breena M. Roos, Esq.
Perkins Coie LLP / Seattle, WA

11:30 am

Regulation of Alcoholic Beverages in Washington'

Current liquor control policy considerations

Stephanie J. Meier, Esq.
Stoel Rives LLP / Seattle, WA

12:00 pm

Lunch (on your own)

1:15 pm

Navigating the Federal, State and Local Permits Necessary to Launch a Food-Related Business

Food facility and food handler permits

Claire Mitchell, Esq.
Stoel Rives LLP / Seattle, WA

I-9 compliance: Tips for efficiently validating immigration work authorization and integrating that into your hiring checklist

Greg McLawsen, Esq.
Sound Immigration / Tacoma, WA

Restaurants: Compliance with requirements for opening a restaurant

Mick M. Fleming, Esq.
Ryan Swanson & Cleveland PLLC / Seattle, WA

2:45 pm


3:00 pm

Food Safety: Food Recall Law and Trends in Personal Injury Liability Litigation

Food recalls: Legal standards and strategies for responding to recall notices; anticipating and avoiding insurance coverage issues

Matthew F. Pierce, Esq.
Gordon Tilden Thomas & Cordell LLP / Seattle, WA

3:45 pm

Startups: Financing and Exit Strategies for Food-Related Companies

How best to prepare the business for private or public financing by preparing a package that covers all the bases, including regulatory compliance

Frank Paganelli, Esq.
Lane Powell PC / Seattle, WA

John C. Siegler , Managing Director
Cascadia Capital LLC / Seattle, WA

Seana Day , Partner
Mixing Bowl and Better Food Ventures / Turlock, CA

5:00 pm

Continue the Exchange of Ideas: Reception for Faculty and Attendees

Sponsored by Lane Powell PC and Lee & Hayes PLLC

Agenda Day 2

Friday, July 28, 2017

8:30 am

Building Brands and Protecting Products: Recent Developments in Trademark, Patent, and Trade Secret Law for Food-Related Businesses

Establishing brand quality through trademarks: Update on current standards for trademark-ability and the relationship of trademarks to FDA standards of identity; current standards for maintaining trademarks through enforcement efforts

Parna A. Mehrbani, Esq.
Lane Powell PC / Portland, OR

Obtaining and avoiding patents for food product inventions

Jeffrey M. Sakoi, Esq.
Seed IP Law Group LLP / Seattle, WA

Maintaining trade secrets: Current requirements for maintaining confidentiality; special issues for licensing trade secrets

Rhett V. Barney, Esq.
Lee & Hayes PLLC / Spokane, WA

10:30 am


10:45 am

Marketing Tips for Food-Related Businesses

Traditional and Big Box stores: Best practices for food labeling

Tess Wilkins , AVP, General Merchandise Manager
Costco Wholesale Corporation / Issaquah, WA

Building and maintaining your reputation through social media on the internet: Case study of Amazon as a platform for marketing food and beverage products: how to stay within the rules and be successful

Andrea K. Leigh
Andrea K. Leigh Consulting, LLC / Seattle, WA

Use and protection of consumer data: Tips for developing and communicating privacy and data use policies both within the organization and externally

Matthew C. Staples, Esq.
Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati PC / Seattle, WA

12:30 pm

Evaluations and Adjourn

Faculty Bios

Carol Pratt, Ph.D., Prog Carol Pratt, Ph.D., Prog ram Co-chair, is an FDA attorney at Lee & Hayes, PLLC where she advises clients in a range of product categories, including food, cosmetics, medical devices (hardware and software), drugs/biologics. A significant focus of Dr. Pratt’s practice involves counseling on regulatory compliance, scientific substantiation and marketing strategies for dietary supplements, medical foods, functional foods and beverages. Carol is a former neuroscientist whose practice also covers compliance with HIPAA and human subject research regulations.

Paul D. Swanson, Paul D. Swanson, Program Co-chair, heads Lane Powell's food, beverage and hospitality group and focuses on IP litigation. Through his representation of various agribusinesses, he has litigated a number of cutting-edge issues arising in the field of plant patent and trademark law. Cases he has worked on have helped shape and highlight the legal issues in this expanding area of law, as more and more companies seek patent and trademark protection.

Rhett V. Barney, Rhett V. Barney, partner at Lee & Hayes, advises clients on worldwide trademark and copyright protection and enforcement strategies, selection and clearance of trademarks, and management of global portfolios.

Seana Day Seana Day is a partner in Mixing Bowl and Better Food Ventures. She is founder and managing partner of DH Consulting LLC, an advisory boutique specializing in private placement, M&A, strategic planning, and restructuring activities.

Mick M. Fleming, Mick M. Fleming, partner at Ryan Swanson & Cleveland PLLC, chairs the firm's business, food & beverage, litigation and real estate group. The group represents restaurants, franchise chains, wholesale distributors, distilleries, grocery stores, wineries, high-end restaurateurs, seafood processors and retail operations, and food and beverage manufacturers in licensing and permits, trademark and intellectual property.

Yi-Kang Hu,. Ph.D., is an experienced FDA attorney who founded Spectra Law Group, LLC to better serve small and medium-sized businesses. Dr. Hu has provided regulatory and intellectual property counsel to food, dietary supplement, drug, biologic, medical device, and cosmetic companies. Prior to practicing law, Dr. Hu was a research scientist.

Andrea K. Leigh Andrea K. Leigh is founder of Andrea K. Leigh Consulting and an expert in e-commerce growth initiatives. Previously she worked for as a GM/Category Leader for the Canadian division. Andrea directed the launch of the third-party and FBA platforms for's grocery category, and its retail grocery launch with vendors such as General Mills, Mars, Unilever, and Hershey.

Greg McLawsen Greg McLawsen is founder of Sound Immigration, a paperless cloud-based and decentralized lawfirm serving clients worldwode. He advises lawyers on identifying and resolving immigration issues for their clients.

Parna A. Mehrbani Parna A. Mehrbani manages Lane Powell PC's trademark Registration and Enforcement practice. She has represented restaurant chains, a global nutritional products company, and local food & beverage companies.

Stephanie J. Meier, Stephanie J. Meier, a partner at Stoel Rives LLP, advises alcohol beverage industry clients, including wineries, breweries, distilleries and retailers, on all aspects of licensing and permitting, post-licensing regulatory compliance, marketing promotions, label and packaging compliance,l tax issues, contracts, and distribution issues.

Claire Mitchell, Claire Mitchell, Stoel Rives LLP, is a business transactional and regulatory compliance attorney for the food, beverage, and hospitality industries. She advises clients on product labeling, marketing, advertising, and packaging, product safety compliance strategies, state and federal liquor licensing matters, and commercial contract negotiations.

Frank Paganelli Frank Paganelli chairs Lane Powell PC's Startups and Emerging Companies Practice Group and is a leader of the Food, Beverage and Hospitality practice group. He counsels clients on issues ranging from corporate structuring and governance to capital strategies, organizational development and commercial transactions.

Matthew Pierce, p artner at Gordon Tilden Thomas & Cordell LLP, focuses his practice on policyholders engaged in insurance coverage disputes. His experience ranges from large- scale coverage litigation on behalf of Fortune 500 policyholders to advising lawyers, architects, engineers, and other individual professionals under their errors and omissions insurance.

Breena M. Roos, Breena M. Roos, Perkins Coie LLP, is senior counsel in the firm's Commercial Litigation practice. She focuses on food litigation, class action defense and intellectual property, and is a contributing author and editor to the Perkins Coie blog Food Litigation News.

Jeffrey M. Sakoi, Seed IP Law Group LLP, specializes in strategic intellectual property counseling, patent procurement and enforcement, licensing, and patent assertion management services. He counsels clients in strategic development of domestic and international intellectual property portfolios.

John C. Siegler is Managing Director at Cascadia Capital LLC and Co-Head of its Consumer & Retail practice. He has completed investment banking transactions for restaurants, specialty retail and branded consumer products businesses.

Matthew C. Staples, Matthew C. Staples, Of Counsel at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati PC, focuses his practice on consumer data, including privacy and data security matters. He advises companies on privacy, data security, and other issues relating to the acquisition, use, monetization, and disclosure of consumer data.

Tess Wilkins is General Merchandise Manager for Costco Wholesale Corporation. For the past six years, she has developed food products for Costco's exclusive brand, Kirkland Signature. She manages a team of buyers who create relationships with farmers and processors for Kirkland Signature products.