W W W. B O T T L E D W AT E R . O R G
ALSO IN THIS ISSUE Politics: Know Why “Truthiness” FSMA and Is Not Enough the Supplier Your Position
BOTTLED WATER REPORTER | MAY/JUN 2015
Making Business Risk Management Work for You
Employment Law for Owners/Operators Why You Should Be a Safety Champion A PUBLICATION OF THE INTERNATIONAL BOTTLED WATER ASSOCIATION
VOL. 55 • NO. 3
COLUMNS GOVERNMENT RELATIONS
24 | The Game of Politics Teamwork is essential for success. Know your position. COMMUNICATIONS
26 | When “Just the Facts” Meets “Truthiness” Interjecting truth and scientific facts into any bottled water conversation. TECHNICAL UPDATE
28 | FSMA and the Supplier Translating the FDA Supplier Program for the bottled water industry. VALUE OF IBWA MEMBERSHIP
32 | Educating Customers With IBWA’s Help Keith Ostlund (Premium Waters, Inc.) discusses with Bottled Water Reporter how he relies on IBWA to help him educate current and potential customers about bisphenol A (BPA) and more.
CHAIRMAN’S COMMENTARY................................2 PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE.......................................4
TABLE OF CONTENTS CONTENTS
12 | Business Risk Management Is More Than Safety Employment Law for Owners/Operations
Safety management should be a critical component of any overall business management system. This article reviews why you should develop a broad knowledge of risk management, labor, and employment and legal principles that can withstand the growing complex legal restrictions and an increasing focus from government officials, labor unions, and plaintiffs. By Edwin G. Foulke, Jr.
18 | Are You a Safety Champion? “Safety first”—it’s not just a catchphrase. IBWA’s 2014 Plant Manager of the Year explains why and how your organization should develop a culture that embraces safety. By Nicole Boehm
CEU QUIZ..........................................................30 ADVERTISERS....................................................31 CLASSIFIEDS.....................................................31
CONNECT WITH IBWA
BOTTLED WATER REPORTER, Volume 55, Number 3. Published six times a year by The Goetz Printing Company, 7939 Angus Court, Springfield, VA, 22153, for the International Bottled Water Association, 1700 Diagonal Road, Suite 650, Alexandria, VA 22314-2973. Tel: 703.683.5213, Fax: 703.683.4074, www.bottledwaterreporter.org. Subscription rate for members is $25 per year, which is included in the dues. U.S. and Canadian subscription rate to nonmembers is $50 per year. International subscription rate is $100 per year. Single copies are $7. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Bottled Water Reporter, 1700 Diagonal Road, Suite 650, Alexandria, VA 22314-2973.
International Bottled Water Association
CHAIRMAN’S COMMENTARY GREATER THAN OUR PARTS
OFFICERS Chairman Bryan Shinn, Shinn Spring Water Company Vice Chairman Joe Bell, Aqua Filter Fresh Treasurer Shayron Barnes-Selby, DS Services
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
This issue of Bottled Water Reporter marks the halfway point of my tenure as IBWA chairman. During my General Session speech last November at IBWA’s annual conference, I mentioned my intentions to work with members to review IBWA’s mission and purpose to help shape the association for years to come. It’s a heavy task, and, to be successful, all members—large, medium, and small—must play a role. Since that speech, analysis of IBWA’s operations has made it crystal clear that we cannot underestimate the valuable role each member plays in this association. Our unique membership roster includes not only companies of varying sizes but also bottlers, suppliers, and distributors—and each comes to the association with its own set of issues and concerns. That’s normal for any association. But what all IBWA members have in common is a true commitment to produce a healthy bottled water product that is safe, reliable, and convenient. For IBWA—for us—to achieve our mission of championing bottled water as the best choice for healthy hydration, we need to focus on that commitment and tackle industry issues together. So far in 2015, we’ve accomplished a lot. We’ve testified before the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on the importance of including more references to water consumption in the 2015 Dietary Guidelines, and we’ve encouraged the HHS and USDA to include a water image on the MyPlate food nutrition icon. Many of us have traveled to Capitol Hill to discuss with members of Congress the federal issues important to our industry, including restrictions on the use of bisphenol A (BPA), food safety funding for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and actions by the National Park Service to ban the sale of bottled water. (We’re heading to Capitol Hill again on June 3, during IBWA’s June Board of Directors and Committee meetings, June 1-4 in Alexandria, Virgina. Join us!) We’ve also opposed any tax on bottled water at the state level, and we’ve continued to correct the record when news outlets publish misleading or inaccurate articles about bottled water in print and on social media. How can we keep this momentum going and continue to shape the perception of the bottled water industry? By presenting a united front. I challenge all members—small, medium, and large—to get more involved in your association. Come to meetings, participate, choose to help IBWA promote and defend the bottled water industry. We still have work to do.
Shayron Barnes-Selby, DS Services Joe Bell, Aqua Filter Fresh Philippe Caradec, Danone Waters of America Andy Eaton, Eurofins Eaton Analytical Brian Grant, Pure Flo Water, Inc. Brian Hess, Niagara Bottling LLC Doug Hidding, Blackhawk Molding Co. Scott Hoover, Roaring Spring Bottling Dan Kelly, Polymer Solutions International Greg Nemec, Premium Waters, Inc. Heidi Paul, Nestlé Waters North America Bryan Shinn, Shinn Spring Water Company Robert Smith, Grand Springs Distribution Lynn Wachtmann, Maumee Valley Bottlers, Inc. William Patrick Young, Absopure Water Co., Inc.
IBWA EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE Chairman, Bryan Shinn, Shinn Spring Water Company Shayron Barnes-Selby, DS Services Joe Bell, Aqua Filter Fresh Philippe Caradec, Danone Waters of America Tom Harrington, DS Services Henry R. Hidell, III, Hidell International Scott Hoover, Roaring Spring Bottling Dan Kelly, Polymer Solutions International Heidi Paul, Nestlé Waters North America Breck Speed, Green System Distribution William Patrick Young, Absopure Water Co., Inc.
COMMITTEE CHAIRS Communications Committee Damon Grant, Pure Flo Water, Inc. Jane Lazgin, Nestlé Waters North America Education Committee Glen Davis, Absopure Water Co., Inc. Douglas R. Hupe, Aqua Filter Fresh Environmental Sustainability Committee Philippe Caradec, Danone Waters of America Jeff Davis, Blackhawk Molding Co. Government Relations Committee Shayron Barnes-Selby, DS Services Gene Belcher, Grand Springs Distribution Membership Committee Marge Eggie, Polymer Solutions International Kelley Goshay, DS Services State and Regional Associations Committee Joe Cimino, ChoiceH2O Ross Rosette, H2Oregon Supplier and Convention Committee Brian Grant, Pure Flo Water, Inc. Dan Kelly, Polymer Solutions International Technical Committee Andy Eaton, Eurofins Eaton Analytical Kevin Mathews, Nestlé Waters North America
IBWA Chairman 2
International Bottled Water Association
PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE WHEN SAFETY COMES FIRST, YOU LAST Whether you are an executive dealing in risk management or a plant manager responsible for bottling operations, the issue of safety and its role in business affects you. This edition of Bottled Water Reporter takes a look at safety from the management and employee perspectives—and finds both have shared responsibilities in dealing with safety issues. In “Business Risk Management Is More Than Safety” (p.12), Edwin Foulke, Jr., former assistant secretary of labor for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), explains that effective safety management is not just about safety—it’s a critical component of your overall business management system. Growing complex legal restrictions and an increasing focus from government officials, labor unions, and plaintiffs require businesses to develop a broad knowledge of risk management, labor, and employment and legal principles. You’ll get a good overview here. IBWA’s 2014 Plant Manager of the Year Nicole Boehm (DS Services of America) reviews why your organization should develop a culture that embraces safety in “Are You a Safety Champion?” (p.18) The best way to create that culture, she says, is to “ensure your employees feel invested in the process.” Both employer and employee need to commit to becoming safety champions, a title they earn through experience, self-reflection, and a willingness to take action. Our Government Relations column (p.24) reveals the many positions that need to be filled on a team that is working to help ensure onerous legislation targeting the bottled water industry does not make it out of committee. The Communications column (p.26) discusses the public’s acceptance of “truthiness” (i.e., the quality of seeming or being felt to be true, even if not necessarily true), and how that creates challenges for IBWA staff and members as we continue to shape a discussion about bottled water that focuses on scientific facts and truths. And in this issue’s Technical Update column (p.28), we review how the bottled water industry is impacted by the supplier program that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has recommended as part of the Food Safety Modernization Act. We encourage you to share the business risk management and safety information presented in this issue with your management teams and employees. Let us know if you implement any of the suggestions presented in the articles, and we’ll print your success stories in our next issue to inspire other bottled water organizations to become safety champions.
IBWA President 4
BOTTLED WATER REPORTER is published for: International Bottled Water Association 1700 Diagonal Road, Suite 650 Alexandria, VA 22314-2973. Tel: 703.683.5213 Fax: 703.683.4074 www.bottledwater.org
IBWA STAFF President Joseph K. Doss firstname.lastname@example.org Vice President of Education, Science, and Technical Relations Robert R. Hirst email@example.com Vice President of Communications Chris Hogan firstname.lastname@example.org Vice President of Government Relations Kristin Pearson Wilcox email@example.com Chief Financial Officer Michelle S. Tiller firstname.lastname@example.org Director of Conventions, Trade Shows, and Meetings Michele Campbell email@example.com Director of Science and Research Tamika Sims, PhD firstname.lastname@example.org Director of Government Relations J.P. Toner email@example.com Manager of Publications and Special Projects Sabrina E. Hicks firstname.lastname@example.org Manager of Member Services Dennis Carpenter email@example.com Education and Technical Programs Coordinator Claire Crane firstname.lastname@example.org Executive Assistant Patrice Ward email@example.com Bottled Water Reporter Layout and Design Rose McLeod firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 315.447.4385 Editor Sabrina E. Hicks email@example.com Advertising Sales Stephanie Schaefer firstname.lastname@example.org
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Pharmacist Michael Raduazzo (left) and Adam Haber with the “Big Red Box,” sponsored by the Haber family and Raduazzo.
Inaugural Alan A. Leff Memorial Lecture Results in More Responsible Disposal of Medications in Long Island On February 22, 2015, Thomas McAbee, executive director of Lloyd Magothy Water Trust, Inc., gave the inaugural Alan A. Leff Memorial Lecture during the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting. His presentation focused on the innovative efforts of his organization to reduce prescription drugs in Long Island, New York’s drinking water sources. According 6
to McAbee, “The key to a successful medication disposal program is making medication disposal free, confidential, and, most importantly, convenient.” Thus, the Lloyd Magothy Water Trust (named for the Lloyd and Magothy aquifers, which supply municipal water to nearly 3 million Long Islanders) designed the “Big Red Box,” a pharmaceutical collection receptacle that can be placed in retail
pharmacies to protect Long Island’s drinking water from medication contamination and to help solve the medication disposal dilemma. After hearing McAbee’s speech, one attendee contacted his longtime friend and current Long Island resident Adam Haber, encouraging him to get in touch with McAbee. On March 11, 2015, the Haber family and pharmacist Michael Raduazzo announced
that a Big Red Box is now operational at the Greenvale Pharmacy in Greenvale, New York. Haber will underwrite the entire cost of disposal of all unwanted medications deposited into the pharmaceutical collection receptacle for one year. All unwanted medications will be responsibly disposed of by incineration. Raduazzo, who owns Greenvale Pharmacy, said, “Responsible disposal of unwanted medications helps keep old medications out of our drinking water and also prevents prescription drug abuse. Having the Big Red Box here . . . is a great benefit for our community.” To learn more about the Big Red Box and the Lloyd Magothy Water Trust, visit bit.ly/BigRedBoxLMWT. For more information about the Alan A. Leff Memorial Lecture Fund, or to make a tax-deductible contribution to the fund, please visit the DWRF website: www. thefactsaboutwater.org.
DID YOU KNOW?
According to preliminary data from Beverage Marketing Corporation, bottled water volume increased
7.3% in 2014.
Robert Smith (right) accepts the Business of the Year Award from incoming Halifax County Chamber Chairman Michael Watson.
Grand Springs Named Business of the Year for Halifax County On March 10, 2015, the Halifax County Chamber of Commerce in Virginia named IBWA bottler member Grand Springs Distribution its Business of the Year. Michael Watson, the incoming chairman of the chamber
board, stated that the bottling company earned the recognition because it has been a supporter of the chamber and community for many years. Grand Springs’ staff have been actively participating at chamber functions for
many years and often serve on the Virginia Cantaloupe Festival and golf tournament committees. The award came as a surprise to Grand Springs owner and CEO Robert Smith, a member of IBWA’s board of directors, who said he “couldn’t accept the award without saying thank you to the wonderful employees we have at Grand Springs. I’m behind the scenes . . . Those are the people that make [the company], not me.” Smith purchased the Alton, Virginia, water facility in 2003, but the business has been open in the county since 1998. Since 2009, Grand Springs has supplied bottled water to the U.S. House of Representatives’ cafeteria and to employees at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, in Washington, DC. The company produces spring and purified bottled water products, offering 3 gallon, 5 gallon, 12 ounces, 16.9 ounces, 20 ounces, and 1 liter packaging options. For more information about Grand Springs, visit www.grandsprings.com.
IBWA Testifies Before HHS and USDA in Support of More Pro-Water References in the Dietary Guidelines On March 24, 2015, IBWA staff testified before the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on the importance of including more pro-water consumption references in the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee released its Scientific Report on February 20, and the March 24 hearing allowed for public comment on that report. IBWA Director of Science and Research Tamika Sims, PhD, testified that bottled water plays an important role in helping Americans pursue a healthy lifestyle. She also emphasized the fact that packaged beverages are an essential part of today’s on-the-go society. Thus, in order to help reduce the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages, bottled water, in addition to free water, must be promoted to Americans. Particularly noteworthy was testimony from the Center for Science in the Public Interest’s Nancy Becker, who mentioned
that people should “drink water first for thirst” and encouraged HHS and USDA to include a water image on the MyPlate food nutrition icon. A representative from the Tea Council also mentioned the importance of water consumption, linking it with tea consumption and stating that tea can provide a calorie-free way to help people drink more water. In advance of the meeting, IBWA issued a press release highlighting Dr. Sims’ testimony and provided social media coverage during the event, tweeting and posting on Facebook. IBWA also prepared written comments for HHS and USDA, which were submitted in advance of the May 8, 2015 deadline. A recording of the March 24 hearing, including IBWA’s testimony, is available at www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines. If you have questions, please contact Dr. Sims: email@example.com. MAY/JUN 2015
Promoting Healthy Hydration in the Warmer Months It’s not surprising that as the temperatures go up people tend to drink more bottled water. Because bottled water is more often on the minds of consumers, you have a great opportunity through social media to educate them about the role bottled water plays in healthy hydration. Feel free to tweet out the following messages from your company’s Twitter accounts—or use them as inspiration and write your own! •
May is American Stroke Month. Could hydration improve stroke outcomes? Short answer: YES. bit.ly/HydrationImprovesStrokeOutcomes Dehydration in Stroke Might Hurt Outcomes bit.ly/DehydrationHurtsStrokeOutcomes [on May 10] Happy Mother’s Day! Let Mom know you love her—encourage her to stay properly hydrated with water! bit.ly/PoweredByHealthyHydration May 22 is Heat Awareness Day. If it gets hotter, drink some water! #BeatTheHeat #BottledWater www.weather.gov/heatsafety May 24-30 is National Hurricane Preparedness Week. Stock supply kits with 1 gallon of water per person per day for at least 3 days. www.ready.gov/kit
Help spread bottled water’s good story. Receive IBWA’s Social Media Communications Toolkit. IBWA members can email IBWASocialMedia@ bottledwater.org for more information.
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Water is essential to survival when disaster hits. FEMA recommends you include bottled water in your survival kit. www.ready.gov/water [During June] June is Great Outdoors Month. Grab some bottled water and hit the trails! www.greatoutdoorsmonth.org [On June 8] #FactCheck At Sea Ship Waste dumping is harming our oceans, not #BottledWater bit.ly/SeaWaste [June 15-21] Keep the men in your life healthy by encouraging them to stay properly hydrated! bit.ly/DehydrationEffectsOnMen [on June 21] First Day of Summer! When the temps get hotter, drink some #BottledWater! #BeatTheHeat
IBWA Welcomes New Members When new members join IBWA, they bring added energy to the organization and help us respond to the demands of the marketplace and see industry challenges with fresh eyes. Please help IBWA make these new members feel welcome.
Blue Waters Products Limited www.bluewaterstt.com 868.640.8824 Primary Representative: Troy Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org) Located in Trinidad and Tobago, international bottler member Blue Waters Products Limited was established in 1999 and is the largest and most modern water plant in the Caribbean. From the initial stage of blowing bottles to marketing the product aggressively both locally and regionally, Blue Waters produces premium purified bottled water in the following sizes: 400ml, 650ml (regular and sport), 1.5 liters, 5 liters, 8 liters, and 5 gallons.
EarthRes Group, Inc. www.earthres.com email@example.com 800.264.4553 Primary Representative: Jillian Olsen, QEP (firstname.lastname@example.org) Established in 1995, EarthRes is a supplier member company that employs a team of engineers, geologists, and environmental specialists who use their global experience and innovation to solve your business’ unique challenges. Among the company’s many offerings are environmental services such as developing and permitting new spring water sources, geologic and hydrogeologic investigations, and water treatment. EarthRes is equipped to assist in expanding your spring water business and can complete all phases of your projects—from planning and investigation to engineering and permitting.
Montana Artesian Water Company 406.755.3515 Primary Representative: Lew Weaver (email@example.com) Affiliate IBWA member. N.T. Brinkman, Inc. 434.2421401 Primary Representative: Norm Brinkman (firstname.lastname@example.org) Affiliate IBWA member. Real estate developer.
Novembal www.novembal.com 480.747.1117 Primary Representative: David Watts (email@example.com) For more than 50 years, supplier member Novembal has been a specialist in plastic cap design and injection, and present in the liquid foods markets as a world leader supplier of closures for the bottled water, wine, and spirit segments. The company’s extensive knowledge of the markets, experience, and commitment to continuous quality improvement place it amongst leaders in the market for liquid food caps. Novembal’s network of six production facilities and membership in the Tetra Pak group since 1999 enable it to respond effectively to customers’ needs and cover the world market. The Village Well www.livingwd.org 708.697.5335 Primary Representative: Benjamin Daniel (firstname.lastname@example.org) Candidate bottler.
Global Trade Works www.globaltradeworksllc.com 949.233.4298 Primary Representative: Terry Havener (email@example.com)
Want to Join IBWA? Visit www.bottledwater.org/membership for more information.
Global Trade Works is a supplier member offering bottled water coolers, POU water coolers, and cooler replacement parts. MAY/JUN 2015
WATER NOTES FLEET NEWS
Survey Shows Typical Fleet Smaller, Younger In its March 2015 issue, Beverage World magazine published results from its 32nd Annual Vehicle Trends Survey, which showed that vehicle fleets are younger than they used to be and more diverse in terms of the types of vehicles and equipment. For the first time, Beverage World split the results into metrics for beverage distributors and beverage producers/bottlers. By splitting the results, operators have a truer picture of the “average” beverage distributor or “average” producer/bottler; therefore, they will have more accurate metrics to use when planning future vehicle acquisitions, establishing fleet operating specs, and exploring fleet cost savings. Below is a sample of Beverage World’s fleet survey results: • The typical producer/bottler fleet is smaller than it was five years ago, but distributor fleets are larger. • Tractor-trailer combinations continue to gain as a delivery vehicle configuration of choice as operators increasingly seek to maximize equipment utilization and driver productivity. A single delivery vehicle is making more stops, and therefore cargo capacity per vehicle is increasing. • On the other end of the size spectrum: more smaller, specialty utility vehicles are in operation. • The average beverage delivery vehicle travels nearly 30,000 miles per year, but producer/bottler vehicles travel a third more miles. • The number of beverage operators that lease at least some of the vehicles in their fleets is growing. Beverage World’s 32nd Annual Vehicle Trends Survey was conducted via online questionnaire during January 2015. Results were collected and tabulated by an independent research firm hired by Beverage World. A more in-depth report of the survey results is available in a downloadable format at beverageworld.com. 10
ONBOARD TECHNOLOGIES Remote vehicle tracking technology is the most depolyed in-vehicle technology used by beverage operators, followed by diagnostics systems and back-up/ blind spot detection. Percent of companies using each technology All Companies
Back-up/blind spot detection
Wireless voice/data communication
Forward/side collision warning
Remote vehicle tracking
Source: 2015 Beverage World Fleet Survey
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BUSINESS RISK MANAGEMENT IS MORE THAN SAFETY EMPLOYMENT LAW FOR OWNERS/OPERATORS By Edwin G. Foulke, Jr.
In the late 1800s and early 1900s, a small group of large employers started to discuss safety and its role in business, and that discussion continued to grow throughout the 20th century. However, it was not until the enactment of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSHA), during the Nixon administration, that the need for safety and the implementation of safety policies and procedures became more formalized. It was around this time that safety started to become one of the measures of success for U.S. businesses and employers. As the focus on safety increased with more employers throughout the country, greater emphasis was placed on risks associated with potential safety and health hazards. Thus, a spotlight was cast on those workplace injuries, illnesses, and possible fatalities that could dramatically (or traumatically) increase the risk to a company’s equity, shareholder value, as well as the risk of penalties, fines, and even plant shutdowns. As those concerns continued to grow, the outcome was the development and analysis by employers (or at least by the employer’s insurance carrier) of “risk management.” The foundation of risk management centers on identifying the risk and, once it is identified, assessing the potential risk impact on the company and, finally, prioritizing the risk from a business and, to a certain degree, an economic standpoint. Specifically, safety risk management determines the need for, and the adequacy of the, risk controls based on the assessment of an acceptable risk.
However, there is growing concern that the increasing focus on risk management, instead of safety, may actually dilute the effectiveness of a company’s safety program. That’s because now, under safety risk management, a certain amount of injuries, illnesses, and, arguably, fatalities would be acceptable as part of a risk assessment.
Occupational injuries and illnesses cost U.S. business
Risk Management as Business Management
A number of segments within the business community argue that risk management is really business management. They point to the fact that managers weigh and prepare for risk in everything they do: buying and selling products, businesses, and assets; making decisions to merge or acquire or divest businesses, as well as about regulatory compliance; hiring and firing of employees; responding to disasters; and handling disgruntled employees, workers’ compensation, shareholders’ concerns, and transition issues. Because of the scope of those business risk management programs, only a certain segment of risk management will include safety. Having a comprehensive safety and health management system is important for any company. That includes identifying and eliminating safety and health hazards within the workplace to reduce injuries, illnesses, and potentially fatalities. Improvements in safety and health result in a decrease in the amount of workers’ compensation claims
Source: EHS Today, The Value of Safety Infographic (ehstoday.com/ osha/value-safety-infographic)
a company pays and results in increased productivity and profitability. The company is now more competitive in the business world. However, while trying to achieve improved levels of safety, most employers fail to recognize the true cost of an employee’s injury, illness, or fatality, as well as the different risk management issues that are present within such incidents. Specifically, employers generally understand the direct cost of an accident (including medical costs, indemnity costs, and insurance costs) but, by and large, fail to identify the indirect costs associated with an injured employee. In fact, the indirect cost of an accident may be significantly higher than the direct costs. Employers fail to recognize the indirect cost of an accident which can include, but is not limited to, lost
Listed below are just some of the direct and indirect costs to employers for an injured employee.
Rehiring costs Quality costs Harm to employee morale Increased potential for disgruntled employees Property damage Investigations Litigation Training Inability to meet orders Loss of business Negative impact to a company’s reputation
RISK/SAFETY time/sufficiency, production delays, rehiring costs, quality costs, harm to employee morale, increased potential for disgruntled employees, property damage, investigations, litigation, training, inability to meet orders, loss of business, and negative impact to a company’s reputation.
Related Labor and Employment Issues In addition to the direct and indirect costs of an accident, employers can face significant other labor and employment issues resulting from unsafe worksites, which must be factored in as part of any risk management assessment. Specifically, every employer needs to examine closely how a workplace injury can lead to multiple labor and employment issues and associated litigation. For example, imagine an employee is injured (e.g., amputation) while violating the company’s lockout/ tagout procedure. In such cases, the injured employee is a disgruntled, poor performer who constantly failed to follow the company’s safety and health rules and procedures and who should have been separated from the company prior to his action causing an injury to himself or to a coworker. However, as a result of the employee’s violation of the company’s lockout/tagout policy, the company terminates the employee for an unsafe accident and failing to follow the company’s procedures. As the result of the termination, the employee files an OSHA Section 11(c) retaliation claim, claiming he was a whistleblower for having previously made safety complaints to the company on behalf of himself and other employees. At the same time, the terminated employee files a safety complaint with OSHA, then OSHA commences a record-keeping audit to determine if the company properly records all work-related injuries and illnesses and, at the same time, conducts a wall-towall inspection of the facility based on the fact that the employee injury (amputation) is covered under OSHA’s national emphasis program for amputations. In addition to the retaliation claims and other complaints to OSHA, the employee then files a state workers’ compensation retaliation claim stating that he was retaliated against for filing the workers’ comp claim. The employee also files a wrongful discharge suit in state court and, at the same time, files an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charge under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) against the employer, claiming he was discharged for his disability. Finally, the employee files a Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) complaint with the Department of Labor (DOL), and then a DOL rep refers a lawyer to him through the “Bridge to Justice” program while, at the same time, instituting a Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) claim for nonpayment of wages.
905,690 days off: the number of days U.S. employees took off from work resulting from occupational injuries or illnesses in 2012.
Source: EHS Today, The Value of Safety Infographic (ehstoday.com/ osha/value-safety-infographic)
Clearly, this scenario demonstrates the critical evaluation that each and every employer must conduct to determine that the employee’s termination presents a significant risk to the company based on all the potential actions set forth above.
Lawyers, Regulators, and Unions Are Watching Trial lawyers, federal regulators, and unions are clearly looking for multiple exposures against employers to achieve their particular goals. The federal regulators in the Obama administration have used OSHA as their “test agency,” but they are now using the same approach in bringing multiple enforcement actions against employers through the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), the Wage-Hour Division of the DOL, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the EEOC. At the same time, many federal agencies are vigorously promoting the use of whistleblower claims against employers, and that is part of the overall enforcement strategy. Specifically, the DOL encourages complainants to make multiple claims using private counsel for not only OSHA claims but also Wage-Hour and FMLA claims.
Litigation on the Rise Employers should be aware that employment litigation lawsuits increased almost 400 percent in the last 20 years. The most common target for those lawsuits is an employer with anywhere between 15 and 100 employees. The statistics also show that, in federal court, employees bringing acts against employers have a 67 percent chance that the award will exceed $100,000. In addition, the average compensatory damage is almost at a half million dollars. In MAY/JUN 2015
Employers should be aware that employment litigation lawsuits increased almost 400 percent in the last 20 years. The most common target: employers with between 15 and 100 employees. the past several years, EEOC has experienced the highest number of charges filed in the past 45 years. A review of the EEOC’s five year strategic plan shows a focus on more class action and systemic investigations and charges by the agency. In addition, in the past several years, the number of disability, sex, retaliation, equal pay, religion, and Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) claims or charges have increased. In the past six years, the number of full-time employees, as well as the budgets, at OSHA, Wage-Hour, EEOC, and the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has significantly increased. Of note is the continued increase in the number of Wage-Hour cases filed in federal court during the last few of years. Typically, the Wage-Hour claims being litigated include failure to provide breaks, failure to provide meal periods, failure to provide overtime, failure to pay wages upon termination, failure to provide travel or training time, misclassification of administrative professional employees, and recordkeeping issues.
Social Media and Related Risks Unfortunately, in addition to the safety and employment issues discussed above, the use of social media within the worksite is a growing area of litigation impacting risk management for all employers. Social media is causing a number of problems within the workplace, including litigation against companies for using social media to research applicants, data being leaked to the outside when layoffs 16
occurred, companies being harmed by sensitive information being released by disgruntled employees, litigation against companies for termination based on email violations, increase in the number of companies having email subpoenaed as a result of other ongoing litigation, and litigation resulting from terminated employees for use of social media at the worksite. More and more employees believe their online activities are none of the employers’ business, while the amount of litigation being brought against employers for monitoring social network sites at work is increasing. Terminations by employers for content on employees’ blogs has resulted in litigation and finding for the employee based on an invasion of privacy. Also, employers should realize that employees utilizing the Internet for certain activities can result in civil or criminal liability. Actions brought under state and federal computer crime laws, common law invasion of privacy or other tort actions, Fair Credit Reporting Act, Stored Communications Act, Wiretap Act, Title VII, GINA and other discrimination laws, and the NLRB are occurring more frequently. Employers should be especially sensitive to a potential National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) claim against them for discipline or terminating employees that may be seen as “protective and concerted activity.” The NLRB has ruled that discipline may be inappropriate if employees are engaging in protected activities such as sharing information about their pay, complaining about employer policies or managers, displaying union-related insignias/logos, expressing support for a union, or attempting to organize a union using social media. The NLRB is routinely examining companies’ communications policies to determine whether or not they violate the employees’ NLRA-protected rights. All employers must carefully draft their social media policy to ensure that it does not violate the employees’ right under the NLRA and possibly under other labor and employment laws and regulations.
number of workers killed on the job in 2012. Source: EHS Today, The Value of Safety Infographic (ehstoday.com/ osha/value-safety-infographic)
Safety and health management systems can
reduce injury illness cost by 20-40 percent. Source: EHS Today, The Value of Safety Infographic (ehstoday.com/ osha/value-safety-infographic)
Shared Responsibilities In dealing with safety issues that can potentially branch off into other labor and employment concerns, it is clear from the discussion above that there are different roles to be played by a company’s safety professional, HR/benefits director, or facility manager—and, yes, even owners and corporate executives. It is critical that each of the above individuals should identify the legal requirements and exposure associated with each of their roles. In addition,
Polymer Solutions International, Inc.
each needs to recognize, evaluate, and manage the legal risks (“issue spot”) for each of their roles. Finally, each of those individuals in any company must recognize that they have shared responsibilities in dealing with all OSHA safety, labor, and employment issues, as well as social media concerns, and must work and coordinate together to assure that actions being taken by one group do not result in legal liabilities for the company based on other legal bases.
Edwin G. Foulke, Jr., is a partner and co-chair of the Workplace Safety and Catastrophe Management Practice Group at Fisher & Phillips LLP, a leading national labor and employment law firm. Before joining Fisher & Phillips, he was Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health. Named by President George W. Bush to head OSHA, he served from 2006-2008, when rates of workplace injuries, illnesses, and fatalities dropped to their lowest level in recorded history. Foulke was chairman of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission from 1990-1994. He is the only person to have held both positions. Foulke has been named one of the “50 Most Influential EHS Leaders” in the United States in 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013 by EHS Today magazine. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 404.231.1400.
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ARE YOU A SAFETY CHAMPION? Find out why you should be—and how to encourage your employees to think “Safety First” By Nicole Boehm
In manufacturing facilities across the United States, brightly colored signs hang in hallways, inscribed with these words: “Safety First.” Such catchphrases can be deceptive. They obscure the true complexity of what it means to operate in and maintain a safe work environment. For most organizations—and by extension their management staff— promoting a safe work environment means following a set of procedures mandated by a regulatory agency. Those regulations provide a blueprint, but to create a truly safety-centric environment your company must go beyond baseline regulations. It must cultivate a culture that promotes and values safety as an asset—just as it values inventory, plant equipment, or other more tangible items. Regulations do not inherently make a workplace safer; how employees respect and value the rules is what gives true value to safety. Furthermore, as an employer, you have a duty to provide your employees with the tools, knowledge, and guidance to be able to increase the safety quotient of the work environment.
If your organization is to develop a culture that embraces safety, your employees need to feel invested in the process. They need to become “safety champions.” But to do that, a commitment is needed from both you (the employer) and the employee. One does not earn the title of safety champion after attending one seminar or implementing one process improvement (although such activities are great steps forward). The title of champion must be earned through experience, self-reflection, and a willingness to take action. Your company and employees need to regularly reevaluate and reassess where they are in the process of becoming safety champions. Use the topics highlighted on the following pages to focus and initiate safety discussions with your employees.
A team member absent for a single day usually means his or her workload is distributed to the remaining team members. If the position is left vacant for an extended period, it can stress the system, requiring longer hours and more effort from the remaining staff. The increased workload on those covering the absentee worker’s responsibilities could have a greater impact on workplace safety than you think. Understanding the role that fatigue can have on safety and productivity is necessary to create a truly lean manufacturing environment.
Lean Manufacturing: Finding the Right Balance While there are many definitions of “lean manufacturing,” the Lean Enterprise Institute defines it as having the goal to create “more value for customers with fewer resources” (www.lean. org/whatslean). Forklifts, robots, and conveyors are common resources found at a production facility; however, most will argue that the greatest asset your company can possess is its human capital. The employees who operate and
maintain equipment and ensure that goods are making their way to consumers are the most important component of your daily operations. In a lean factory, you schedule just enough daily labor hours to get the job done. Minimizing waste (in this case, time) is the goal. So, how does a lean team plan for employee vacation breaks and sick calls? How does it react when someone leaves the company? The answers to those questions obviously impact cost, but they also affect workplace safety.
For an employee, arriving to work well rested each day is a personal decision, one that can influence the safety and wellbeing of the entire team. In “Fatigue Risk Management in the Workplace,” a 2012 paper published by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM), it’s noted that “fatigue and decreased alertness resulting from insufficient or poor quality sleep can have several safety-related consequences, including slowed reaction time, reduced vigilance, reduced decision-making ability, poor judgment, distraction during complex tasks, and loss of awareness in critical situations” (bit.ly/FatigueInWorkplace). An organization’s management team can use available research on fatigue, such as the ACOEM fatigue report, to help it find the right balance between the costs of headcount versus the cost of a safe work environment. But having well-rested employees is just the start of how you can develop safety champions at your plant.
ESTIMATED ANNUALIZED EMPLOYEE INJURY RATES/HOURS OF SLEEP Estimated Annualized Injury Rates/100 Workers Hours of sleep
Source: “Fatigue Risk Management in the Workplace,” American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (2012), bit.ly/FatigueInWorkplace
Did You Know? Five seconds is the average time your eyes are off the road while texting. When traveling at 55mph, that’s enough time to cover the length of a football field blindfolded.
Technology in the Workplace: the Need to Be Connected According to a report from the National Transportation Safety Administration, there were 421,000 people “injured in distraction-affected crashes” in 2012 (bit.ly/DistractedDriverFacts2012). While drivers (or production operators) can be distracted by many things, cellphones are America’s no. 1 distraction while driving, according to the statistics portal Statista.com (bit. ly/DrivingDistractionFacts). Any activity performed routinely (like checking text messages) for a prolonged period of time can be habit forming. While all habits are not negative in nature, if employees working in an industrial environment feel the need to be constantly connected and on their cell phones, they present a risk. It might not seem harmful to take 10 seconds to check a text message on the shop floor, but there can be real consequences to both
Source: “Driver Distraction in Commercial Vehicle Operations,” U.S. Department of Transportation, September 2009 (bit.ly/USDOTDD); bit.ly/OneTextCampaign
the employee on the phone and his or her coworkers. Is the employee looking at his phone while completing a lockout/tagout procedure on a machine that requires attention? Is she operating a forklift or driving a route truck? Whether on the road or working on and around heavy machinery, employees must focus on the task at hand. If your plant policies have been outpaced by technology, it’s time to reevaluate your program.
your company can be held responsible. Here’s an example: in Florida, a jury found a soft drink beverage company liable when its driver, while talking on a hands-free headset allowed by the company’s policy, broadsided another vehicle and seriously injured the driver. Ultimately, the jury “held the company liable to pay $21 million in compensatory and punitive damages to the injured driver” (bit.ly/DriverLawsuits). One way companies can discourage cell phone use on the job is through education. Employers can download
If one of your route drivers injure someone while engaged in risky behavior,
10 LEADING CAUSES* AND DIRECT COSTS OF THE MOST DISABLING WORKPLACE INJURIES OF 2012 Overexertion involving outside source Struck by object or equipment Falls on same level
Other exertions or bodily reactions
*2-Digit Bureau of Labor Statistics Event
Slip or trip without fall
Roadway incidents involving motorized land vehicle
Fall to lower level
Repetitive motions involving micro-tasks
Caught in/ compressed by equipment or objects
Struck against object or equipment
Sum of top 10 events = 83.8% Total costs = $59.58 billion
Source: 2014 Workplace Safety Index, Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety (bit.ly/2014WorkplaceSafetyIndex) MAY/JUN 2015
and distribute campaign materials— such as “One text one call could wreck it all” (bit.ly/OneTextCampaign) and “Stop the Texts. Stop the Wrecks” (bit. ly/StopTheTextsCampaign)—to help curb distracted driving. The best way to educate your employees about safe behavior is simply by adhering to it yourself. Model the behavior you want to see. A safety champion knows that his or her actions in a vehicle or on the production floor are being watched by employees. In order to live up to the title, you must lead by example.
Cause or Consequence? The Bureau of Labor Statistics compiles and reports on the number of occupational injuries and illnesses in a given year. Those reports detail cases that
result in days missed at work or transitional job duty (i.e., modified or light duty). That information quantifies what is happening in a particular industry. However, when researching the root cause of injuries, private insurance providers appear to have completed the most extensive analysis. In 2014, the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety released its annual “Workplace Safety Index” report, which provided data on 2012, the most recent year for which data are available. The sidebar on page 21 lists what the firm identified as the 10 leading causes and direct costs for injuries that persist for more than five days. But the safety-conscious reader will notice that the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety’s list describes “consequences” rather than “causes.” A safety
WHAT IS AN IBWA CERTIFIED PLANT OPERATOR? A certified plant operator (CPO) is any person who qualifies to operate and maintain, by experience, education, and training, the facilities of a bottled water plant. Certification is valid for a period of three years, beginning in the calendar year of the examination date and expiring on December 31 of the third calendar year. For example: A CPO candidate who attains a passing score on the examination on May 25, 2015 will be certified until December 31, 2018. A CPO must have successfully completed and passed the IBWA Certified Plant Operator Final Examination. The exam covers good manufacturing practices (GMPs) and the hazard analysis and critical control point (HACCP) system of managing food safety, including source and product sanitation, water treatment technology, product quality, and record keeping. For more information about IBWA’s Certified Plant Operator Program, visit www. bottledwater.org/content/cpo-program.
committee completing an injury or accident investigation must understand the difference between cause (e.g., wet floor combined with improper shoes) and consequence (e.g., fall on same level) in order to complete a thorough root cause analysis. A systematic approach, one that takes the team beyond surface-level reasoning and can attribute cause to a single factor, is imperative in addressing the underlying behavior. A quick Internet search for “root cause analysis templates” can provide employers with the resources you’ll need throughout the process. Regardless of the method of detection, discovering the underlying causes is critical to raising awareness and developing or enhancing a prevention program.
Evaluating Priorities: Where Does Safety Stand in Your Organization? As IBWA members, you know the importance of having skilled professionals in the plant to monitor product quality, as outlined in the association’s Certified Plant Operator Program. A corporate focus on skilled workers is obvious, but a similar focus on safety seems to be lagging behind. Admittedly, corporations are paying more attention to safety, yet implementation still remains widely specific to each organization. So, how can organizations prepare existing and new leaders for the critical role of ensuring the health and safety of the workforce? One way is by discussing safety early and often. For example, during the hiring and
Know the Risks: What Can You Learn From Experience? Safety training and routine internal inspections are two ways your organization can increase awareness, identify potential hazards, and reduce risk. In addition, sharing anecdotal information can sometimes provide valuable insight. For example, a colleague once shared a story that involved the actions of a thirdparty contractor hired to complete a welding job. The technician was observed smoking a cigarette while simultaneously holding a lit torch. Would someone familiar with the explosive properties of welding gas really do that? Whether there was a lack of knowledge or a misguided sense of security because an injury had not yet occurred, the contractor made the unsafe decision to light the cigarette. Learning from that example, as well as countless others you will hear from your peers, can be the best education you’ll ever get on plant safety.
orientation processes, a new manager gleans what is important to his or her employer by the time and attention given to a particular subject. If the corporate safety philosophy and training are not mentioned during the initial stages of the business relationship, that may send an unintended negative message that safety is less important than productivity and cost. Defining safety as a priority for a new manager can impact how much time is spent on it during team huddles or determine the effectiveness of actual training. For seasoned managers who have become accustomed to their daily routines, asking them to set team safety goals can instill a new sense of ownership. Regardless of strategy, a consistent and sincere message goes a long way in guiding your employees to consider safety an accomplice to productivity, not a hindrance.
OSHA’S TOP 10 CITED DEFICIENCIES FOR 2014 1| Fall protection 2| Hazard communication 3| Scaffolding 4| Respiratory protection 5| Powered industrial trucks 6| Control of hazardous energy (lockout/tagout) 7| Ladders 8| Electrical, wiring methods, components, and equipment 9| Machinery and machine guarding 10| Electrical systems design Source: Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Commonly Used Statistics (bit.ly/ OSHA2014Stats)
When an organization is not able to identify a hazard internally, federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) auditors will likely find the gaps. The most frequently cited deficiencies reported on inspection reports in 2014 are identified in the sidebar above.
Take Safety Personally A safety champion does not need to be a member of management or the head of an organization. Any employee who is passionate about what he or she does and has influence over your workforce can be instrumental in making a positive impact on plant safety. While it’s easy to get distracted by conflicting priorities and additional responsibilities, or discouraged by the length of time it can take to initiate change, remember that choosing not to focus on safety can have devastating consequences.
In 2013, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a total of 4,405 work-related fatalities (bit.ly/BLS2013stat). On any given day, that means an average of 12 people who left for work never made it home. That statistic is devastating, but not as devastating as knowing someone included in the total. Someone I worked with early on in my career lost their life in an industrial accident. No words can describe the heartache and pain felt by this person’s family, friends, and coworkers. Nearly two years later, I still vividly remember the tragedy of that day, and it is one of the many reasons why I choose to become a safety champion.
Nicole Boehm, MBA, IBWA’s 2014 Plant Manager of the Year, is a division production manager at DS Services of America, Inc. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Game of Politics By James Toner, IBWA Director of Government Relations
Teamwork is an essential element of success. For sports fans, the spring and summer months present some of the best team-watching opportunities: the NCAA basketball tournament, the NHL and NBA playoffs, and the start of baseball season. As we watch some of the best teams strive for championship titles, we are reminded how hard it is to stop people who are working together as an efficient unit with one mission in mind. “Offense wins fans, defense wins championships,” at least that’s what they say in sports, but the themes of teamwork and a strong defense are also applicable to the public affairs arena. On a recent trip to Augusta, Maine, I saw defensive teamwork in action when 24
I went to testify against legislation (LD 169) that targeted not only one industry but also one particular company within that industry. The bill was nothing new: a one cent per gallon tax on ground and surface water extracted for bottling purposes. It would only apply to those companies using over 1 million gallons in a calendar year, which limited the number of companies targeted by the bill. In 2009 and 2011, similar legislation was introduced and unanimously voted down by the state’s Joint Committee on Taxation. Thus, the current bill may not advance. Even so, it’s important to assemble a team to beat back this proposal so that it doesn’t set a precedent.
Role Players When addressing legislation at the state level, one needs to remember that state always trumps national and local always trumps state. Any committee you testify before will be made up of local lawmakers. While they may have the best interests of the state in mind, state legislators are more concerned about the interests of their direct constituents in their districts. So, a good game plan is to have people from their districts lined up to testify to ensure the committee members pay attention to what is being said. Still, your game plan needs to include a good mix of perspectives— one that presents national, multi-state, and state interests. This strategy
GOVERNMENT RELATIONS doesn’t usurp local concerns; rather, the multi-level approach shows that your argument is well-rounded and lessens the likelihood that the opposition will be able to punch holes in your comments. In Augusta, national, multi-state, state, and local representatives testified. Each presented his or her separate concerns about the legislation and how it would impact Maine. IBWA testified that no other state in the country has such a tax and explained how the entire U.S. bottled water industry is a strong environmental steward of water. In fact, our industry’s water use ratio is 1.32 L/L, and that includes the liter of water consumed—which means bottled water has the lowest water use ratio of any packaged beverage. Several associations introduced strong state views to the discussion: the Maine Beverage Association, Maine State Chamber of Commerce, Maine Tourism Association, Maine Farm Bureau, Wild Blueberry Commission, and the Maine Grocers and Food Producers Association. Their concerns focused on the precedent set by such a bill, how a lack of clarity in the legislation could impact others, and, most importantly, how they may be next on the hit list for such a tax. Self-serving? Perhaps, but it got the point across.
Cleanup Hitters A good baseball manager knows where to place the team’s strongest hitters in the rotation. When working a piece of state legislation, your strongest hitters are your local storytellers: plant managers, line workers, drivers, and salespeople. Their testimonies can tell lawmakers what they really want to know: how the proposed legislation directly impacts the citizens (i.e., voters) in their districts. In Maine, members of the Joint Committee on Taxation were captivated by the emotional stories that explained the im-
BEFORE STATE LEGISLATURES, REMEMBER: STATE TRUMPS NATIONAL INTERESTS. portance of the bottled water industry to the community and how proud employees were to be a part of it. The individuals who testified provided legislators with a good education in just how vital the bottled water industry is to Maine.
Closers You need a good closer to seal the deal. With bills before state legislatures, the best closer is a person who is known and respected by committee members: a colleague in the legislature or another elected representative from a different department within the city or state. A kindred spirit exists between state legislators, and they tend to more willingly receive information from a trusted peer. In Maine, the state geologist; representatives from cities, towns, and water districts; and several state senators and
representatives made clear their desire to stop the bill. Each brought different arguments to light: “Bottled water doesn’t impact aquifers.” “When have we ever placed a tax on one industry?” “Is this even constitutional?” Their powerful arguments were heard by the members of the Joint Committee on Taxation—and the bill suffered a resounding defeat.
End Game Ultimately, your objective should always be to defeat bad legislation soundly enough so that it doesn’t come back. That was the underlying principle behind the massive show of opposition to the bill in Maine. Will it work? Only time will tell, but another unanimous vote against it could go a long way to seal its fate for quite some time.
Plan Now to Participate in IBWA’s June Hill Day During the IBWA June Board of Directors and Committee meetings, June 1-4, 2015, members will once again go to Capitol Hill to educate members of Congress and their staff about the bottled water industry. These meetings are special because they offer a great opportunity for members to visit legislators as a team—and have a meaningful impact on issues that affect the bottled water industry. But to be successful, we need member participation. Please consider joining us: Date: June 3, 2015 | Time: 10:45 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. IBWA staff will set up your appointments, provide you with background information, and even attend meetings with you—whatever you need to make this experience easy and successful. To participate, contact IBWA Vice President of Government Relations Kristin Wilcox: email@example.com.
The golden rule of journalism is perhaps best summed up by fictional detective Joe Friday when he asks for “just the facts” from witnesses. Today, the purity of that approach to truthseeking has perhaps lost its luster. More often than not, current investigative journalism efforts mirror the antics of Stephen Colbert’s fictional on-air “Colbert Report” persona: an uninformed, opinionated, blowhard who is long on attitude but short on facts. Oddly enough, performance and reality collided when the term Colbert coined to explain how what you feel to be true is more real than the facts about that issue–“truthiness”–was selected as Merriam Webster’s Word of the Year in 2006. Truthiness: (noun) the quality of seeming or being felt to be true, even if not necessarily true.
tru•thi•ness \ n When “Just the Facts” Meets “Truthiness” By Chris Hogan, IBWA Vice President of Communications
Truthiness is now regularly used, minus the irony, to describe a very real belief system espoused by those who feel their opinions are equal to, or more real than, opposing facts on any issue. The public’s acceptance that truthiness presents valid points poses a challenge for IBWA. We continue to tell bottled water’s story by providing honest, accurate, and factual information about our products and our industry. Our efforts to interject truth and scientific fact into conversations about industry issues with those who eloquently introduce truthiness—believing the truth to be what they feel, believe, or want to be true—can be exhausting. IBWA painstakingly identifies objective scientific facts, data, regulations, and third-party information to back up our talking points, messages, and statements about bottled water. However, those efforts mean little to someone who believes in his gut (without factual support) that bottled water is a threat to our planet and is run by an uncaring,
COMMUNICATIONS unfeeling industry. Of course, we know this to be untrue, but how can such a person be convinced otherwise? By continuously presenting the facts from as many outlets as possible. Many issues that the bottled water industry faces are evergreen. Thus, bottled water professionals have numerous opportunities to share our fact-based responses to the following misinformed, yet popular, claims. Claim: Bottled water is not regulated, or at least not as regulated as tap water. Reality: It is a fundamental fact of law that bottled water is comprehensively regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a packaged food product. No matter how our opponents feel about it, federal law mandates that FDA regulations governing the safety and quality of bottled water must be at least as stringent as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards for tap water. Claim: More than 70 percent of bottled water avoids regulation because it never crosses state lines. Reality: This myth persists because it fits the aforementioned “unregulated” narrative, and anti-bottled water advocates willingly perpetuate this misinformation. But here’s the truth: FDA’s jurisdiction over bottled water products (and any other product regulated by FDA) extends not only to those products that move in interstate commerce but also to those products sold within a single state that are enclosed in packaging materials (e.g., containers, caps, labels, etc.) that have moved in interstate commerce. For most products, it will always be the case that some portion of the packaging (if not the product itself ) crossed state lines. Moreover, Congress has enacted a law that expressly presumes that all food and beverage products are sold in interstate commerce.
IBWA SHARES BOTTLED WATER’S STORY WITH HONEST, ACCURATE, AND FACTUAL INFORMATION.
Claim: Bottled water is mostly just tap water in a bottle. Reality: No, it isn’t. About half of all bottled water sold at retail locations is purified bottled water; the other half is packaged spring water. In this age of truthiness, some people like to imply that purified bottled water is a “less than” product compared to other bottled waters. However, strict FDA standards ensure that purified bottled water, often sourced from municipal water systems, is not just tap water in a bottle. Once the water enters the bottled water plant several processes are employed to ensure that it meets the purified water standard of the U.S. Pharmacopeia 23rd Revision. Those treatments can include utilizing a multibarrier approach, which include one or more of the following: reverse osmosis, distillation, micro-filtration, carbon filtration, ozonation, and ultraviolet (UV) light. The finished water product is then placed in a bottle under sanitary conditions and sold to consumers. From its requirement to meet the FDA purified water standard to the finished water product being placed in a bottle under sanitary conditions, purified bottled water meets a benchmark that tap water cannot touch.
Truth Is Incontrovertible Unlike our detractors, IBWA can’t rely on truthiness. As the face of the bottled water industry, we have to meet an exceedingly high standard of accuracy and truth, and we do that by dealing in reality, facts, and
science. A manufactured story about a “bottled water global conspiracy out of control” may be a thrilling, fictional tale, but it’s just that: make-believe. In the world of reality in which IBWA operates, the facts prove that the mission of the bottled water industry is to provide consumers with a safe, healthy, reliable, convenient, and refreshing packaged beverage.
Help IBWA Push Out Positive Bottled Water Messages Via Social Media IBWA has developed a Social Media Communications Toolkit to help promote positive stories and news items about the bottled water industry. In the toolkit, you’ll find Facebook posts, Instagram images, Pinterest pins, and Twitter tweets (with URLs to YouTube videos) you can share with your customers, legislators, friends, and family to educate them about bottled water. (Or use them as inspiration and write your own!) When more IBWA member companies push out this content, the more IBWA’s pro-bottled water messages will be amplified. If you are an IBWA member and you’d like to receive the toolkit via email, let us know: IBWASocialMedia@ bottledwater.org. If IBWA members and bottled water professionals don’t spread the positive messages about bottled water, who will?
FSMA and the Supplier Translating the FDA Supplier Program for Bottled Water By Bob Hirst, IBWA Vice President of Education, Science and Technical Relations, with information from Hogan Lovells
In its supplemental proposed rule for preventive controls, published in September 2014, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommended for the first time to require a “supplier program” for raw materials and ingredients for which a water bottling facility has identified a significant hazard (biological, chemical, or physical) when the hazard is controlled before receipt of the raw material or ingredient at the bottling facility. Supplier program requirements would not apply to the following: materials for which there are no significant hazards, the preventive controls at the receiving facility are adequate, or the receiving facility relies on the supplier and obtains written assurance the supplier is controlling the hazards. “Suppliers” are defined by FDA as establishments that manufacture/process food that is provided to a receiving (bottling) facility without further processing by another establishment. An example of a supplier to a bottled water company would be a mineral salt supplier. “Receiving facilities,” in this case water bottling facilities, manufacture/process raw materials or ingredients that they receive from suppliers. In the above example, a water bottling facility would process the mineral salts into its final bottled water product. [Note: Although the preventive controls rule requires that certain food contact materials, such as containers and closures, be included in the food safety plan, the FDA supplier program only addresses materials that become part of the finished product, i.e., ingredients and additives.] A facility that packs or holds food without any manufacturing, such as a distribution warehouse, would not be a supplier, and a bottling facility would not be required to establish a supplier program for food it only packs or distributes. However, if a bottling facility receives material from a distribution center and the bottling facility has
TECHNICAL UPDATE identified a significant hazard in that material, which is controlled by the manufacturing supplier, the bottling facility (not the distribution center) would need to establish supplier verification activities related to the manufacturer that provided the material to the distribution center. If a bottling facility receives an ingredient from a supplier, but the hazard is controlled by the supplier’s supplier, the receiving facility would conduct supplier verification activities that would include reviewing the supplier’s food safety records for its supplier’s control of the hazard. Verification Activities. FDA has proposed to require verification activities, and documentation of such, to ensure materials are received only from approved suppliers. FDA has also proposed to require verification activities to confirm the hazard is significantly minimized or prevented, the material is not adulterated or misbranded, and the material was produced in compliance with applicable FDA food safety regulations. Verification activities include onsite audits, sampling or testing of the raw material, review of the supplier’s records by the receiving facility, or other appropriate supplier verification activities based on the risk associated with the ingredient or the supplier. Facilities would have the flexibility to determine the appropriate verification activities based on several factors: (1) the severity of the hazard; (2) where the preventive controls for those hazards are applied; (3) the supplier’s food safety practices; (4) the supplier’s compliance with FDA food safety regulations; (5) the supplier’s food safety performance history; and (6) any other factors, such as storage and transportation. When there is a reasonable probability that exposure to the hazard will result in serious or adverse health conditions or death to humans or animals (SAHCODHA), the regulations
FDA HAS RECOMMENDED A SUPPLIER PROGRAM FOR THE FIRST TIME. would require an initial onsite audit and annually thereafter, unless the facility documents its determination that other verification activities and/or less frequent audits provide adequate assurance that the hazards are controlled. Furthermore, facilities could conduct alternative verification activities for materials received from qualified facilities or a farm not subject to requirements under the produce safety rule. Audits would need to be conducted by a qualified individual who has technical expertise obtained by a combination of training and experience. Inspections by FDA or an officially recognized or equivalent food safety authority may substitute for a bottled water company’s audit. Bottled water companies would need to take action to address supplier non-conformance and document such action. Documentation. FDA has also proposed to require documentation of the activities associated with the supplier program, including requiring a written supplier program and documentation demonstrating that products are received only from approved suppliers. FDA also proposed to establish minimum requirements for records documenting an audit, records of sampling and testing, records documenting review of the supplier’s relevant food safety records, and documentation of alternative verification activities for suppliers that are qualified facilities. Audit related records would need to document the procedure used, the conclusions of the audit, and corrective actions taken in response to significant deficiencies, but they would not need
to include the underlying audit report. In the preamble to the supplemental proposed rule for preventive controls, FDA explains that even if a supplier program is established and maintained by a facility’s corporate headquarters or parent entity, the agency would expect many of the records for such a program to be accessible during facility inspections because those records would be in electronic form, which would be considered onsite if they are accessible from an onsite location. Relationship to FSVP. The supplier program included in the supplemental proposed rule for preventive controls is intended to be the equivalent of the Foreign Supplier Verification Programs (FSVP) rule that was released as a supplemental proposed rule on the same date.
Want to Learn More? Throughout 2015, IBWA will be presenting on the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and the FDA’s supplier program requirement at state and regional bottled water association meetings and IBWA’s Annual Business Conference, November 2-5, 2015, at the Gaylord National Harbor Hotel in National Harbor, Maryland. Please contact IBWA Vice President of Education, Science, and Technical Relations Bob Hirst if you have any questions or would like to know more: firstname.lastname@example.org.
certified plant operators (CPOs) are encouraged to complete the following quiz for ½ IBWA continuing education unit (CEU). The questions are derived from material presented in this issue of the Bottled Water Reporter, the IBWA Plant Technical Reference Manual, and the IBWA Bottled Water Code of Practice. Submit this quiz to Claire Crane, IBWA Education and Technical Program Coordinator, 1700 Diagonal Road, Suite 650, Alexandria, VA 22134. Look for additional quizzes in future issues and earn additional IBWA CEUs! Name______________________________________________________ Company__________________________________________________ Address____________________________________________________ City_______________________________________________________ State/Province______________________________________________
Check your selection for each question
A bottled water facility will be required under FSMA to develop a supplier program if a hazard exists in the ingredients purchased from a supplier.
OO True if the supplier has a food safety plan in place. OO True if no hazard has been identified. OO False – a supplier program is required regardless of circumstances. OO False if the supplier controls the hazard.
Bottled water labeling includes the _____ as well as other materials accompanying the product.
OO OO OO OO
container label information panel website information
Undeclared addition of ingredients such as salts or carbon dioxide to bottled water renders the product_____.
OO OO OO OO
adulterated more pleasing to the taste misbranded a health hazard
Receiving letters of guarantee and/or assays of lots of minerals salts are forms of _____.
OO OO OO OO
certification validation affirmation verification
Which of the following is not an FDA-required part of a bottled water label?
OO OO OO OO 30
statement of identity location of natural water source information panel name of manufacturer or distributor
The new IBWA SOQ for hexavalent chromium in bottled water is _____.
OO OO OO OO
80 mg/l 10 ug/l 200 ppm 80 ppb
Actual testing for hexavalent chromium is not required in Appendix A of the IBWA Code of Practice unless the test result for total chromium exceeds _____.
OO OO OO OO
10 ug/l 5 ug/l 1 mg/l 10 mg/l
Which of the following is not a category of hazards addressed in the proposed preventive controls rule?
OO OO OO OO
biological hazards chemical hazards radiological hazards physical hazards
Which of the following is not consistent with the other items?
OO OO OO OO
adulterated validated certified verified
Which of the following from Appendix of the IBWA Code of Practice has a standard of quality of “none detectable?”
OO OO OO OO
lead silver haloacetic acids E. coli
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MAY 6 - 8
Upper Midwest Bottled Water Association Annual Meeting Plymouth, MN
MAY 13 - 16
Northwest Bottled Water Associatoin Convention Hotel Murano Tacoma, WA
MAY 18 - 21
California Bottled Water Association Annual Educational Convention and Trade Show Sacramento, CA
JUNE 1 - 4
IBWA June Board of Directors and Committee Meetings Hilton Old Town Alexandria, VA
NOVEMBER 2 - 5
2015 IBWA Annual Business Conference and Trade Show (co-location with NAMAâ€™s CoffeeTea&Water Show) Gaylord National Harbor Hotel National Harbor, Maryland
JUNE 6 - 9
IBWA June Board of Directors and Committee Meetings Hilton Old Town Alexandria, VA
NOVEMBER 7 - 11
IBWA Annual Business Conference and Trade Show (co-location with NAMA CoffeeTea&Water Show) Gaylord Opryland Resort and Conference Center Nashville, Tennesee
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VALUE OF IBWA MEMBERSHIP KEITH OSTLUND OPERATIONS MANAGER PREMIUM WATERS, INC. GRAND FORKS | NORTH DAKOTA MORE ABOUT KEITH A huge race fan, Keith often spends several days trackside at dirt track races and a few NASCAR races a year. When not working, Keith and his wife hit the open road in their motor home to attend races and visit with family and friends. At 47, Keith says people are surprised to learn that he’s a grandfather to a very active 16-month-old granddaughter.
Life unfolds in mysterious ways, and the journey Keith Ostlund took to become a proud operations manager for Premium Waters, Inc. is a perfect example of that. He was first approached by a friend to join Premium Waters 15 years ago, but Keith promptly turned the offer down, believing bottled water was an industry that wasn’t going anywhere—except perhaps showing up in a disparaging news segment on “60 Minutes.” At the time, Keith had a successful sales career in the garage door industry, enjoying a steady paycheck and a good life. When someone from Premium approached him for a second time, Keith agreed to an informational meeting. He left that meeting amazed by how the bottled water industry worked. Today, he says he couldn’t imagine doing anything other than working for Premium Waters: “I love my job, I love the company, and I love my employees and customers.” For the past 14 years, Keith has managed Premium’s home and office delivery operations at its Grand Forks, North Dakota facility. He states that during that time his IBWA membership benefits have come in handy—especially when he needed content on industry issues to help him answer questions from customers. The no. 1 issue customers ask him about? Bisphenol A (BPA). “I can’t tell you how many conversations I’ve had with people who were convinced that what they saw on TV [about BPA] was the gospel.” Keith provides them with information explaining the safety of BPA, and, if the customers aren’t initially convinced, he sends them to IBWA for more educational materials. He says IBWA is the voice and the backbone of the industry, and the association has always been the go-to resource for issues and educational needs. “We’ve been very successful at following their lead. We’ve learned a lot by being members and by talking to other people that belong to IBWA. It’s just been good for us, being involved and doing things the right way,” says Keith. Premium Waters, Inc. is a national bottled water company, but it is perhaps lesserknown than other national brands, mainly because a large part of Premium’s business is bottling custom label bottled water for national retail stores throughout the country. “We are very grateful that these very large companies trust in what we do,” says Keith. Premium Waters is family-owned by the Chesterman Company, which has been bottling water for 145 years. The company currently has eight production facilities, six distribution centers, and more than 700 employees, with PET lines running 24 hours a day, seven days of the week. Keith wants customers to know that Premium’s “dedicated team members are working hard every day to bring our customers the best products and services available.”
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