CHAPTER 258

AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTER 35, TITLE 3, DELAWARE CODE, RELATING TO THE SALE AND GRADING OF EGGS; RESTRICTING THE ADVERTISEMENT THEREOF: PROVIDING FOR ENFORCEMENT BY THE STATE BOARD OF AGRICULTURE; ESTABLISHING CERTAIN PENALTIES AND MAKING A SUPPLEMENTARY APPROPRIATION FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 1968.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware (two-thirds of all members elected to each House thereof concurring therein):

Section 1. Chapter 35, Title 3, Delaware Code, is amended by repealing the same and enacting a new chapter 35 in lieu thereof as follows :

CHAPTER 35. EGGS

§ 3501. Definitions

As used in this act, unless the context clearly requires a different construction;

(a) "Eggs" means eggs in the shell that are the product of domesticated chickens;

(b) "Consumer" means any person who acquires eggs for consumption in his own household and not for resale;

(c) "Institutional consumer" means a restaurant, hotel, boarding house, or any other business, facility, or place in which eggs are prepared or offered as food for use by its patrons, residents, inmates or patients;

(d) "Retailer" means any person who markets eggs to ultimate consumers;

(e) "Market" means sell, offer for sale, give in the channels of commerce, barter, exchange, or distribute in any manner ;

(f) "Person" means any individual, producer, firm, partnership, exchange, association, trustee, receiver, corporation, or

any other entity and any member, officer, employee or agent thereof;

(g) "Grade" means specifications defining the limits of variation in quality of eggs in such a manner as to differentiate among classes of eggs, and the letter, number, or other symbol by which reference thereto may be made ;

(h) "Standard" means specifications of the physical characteristics of any or all of the component parts of individual eggs.

§ 3502. Standards; grades; and size-weight classes

The State Board of Agriculture shall establish, and from time to time, may amend or revise standards, grades, and size-weight classes for eggs marketed in Delaware. In administering this section, the State Board of Agriculture shall have due regard for the desirability of uniformity in the standards, grades, and size-weight classes for eggs moving in intrastate and interstate commerce and may employ standards, grades, or size-weight classes developed by the United States Department of Agriculture.

§ 3503. Official quality grades and weight classes

The standards, grades, weight classes and tolerance for individual shell eggs adopted by the United States Department of Agriculture, Poultry Division of the Agricultural Marketing Service are hereby adopted as the official standards, grades and weight classes and tolerance for the State of Delaware. Such standards as adopted apply to consumer grades only. Supplements to, and revisions of the United States Department of Agriculture's standards, grades, weight classes and tolerance shall serve to effect similar changes in the standards, grades, weight classes and tolerance for Delaware.

Official standards for quality for individual shell eggs are : Grade AA

Grade A Grade B Unclassified

§ 3504. Labeling

(a) The container in which any eggs are marketed in Delaware shall bear prominently on the outside portion thereof :

(1) The grade of the eggs;

(2) The size-weight class of the eggs;

(3) The word "eggs";

(4) The numerical count of the contents ;

(5) The name and address of the packer or distributor.

(b) Eggs marketed in any manner other than in containers labeled in accordance with § 3504 (a) shall be kept in full view of prospective purchaser and shall have adjacent thereto, and prominently displayed, a sign or similar device bearing the grade and size-weight class of the eggs. Eggs not graded for quality shall be marked, "UNCLASSIFIED." Eggs not sorted into official size classes, shall be marked "UNCLASSIFIED." Any such sign or device shall bear letters and numbers of such character as shall be clearly visible to prospective purchasers, such letter and number shall be at least 1/2 inch in height.

(c) The term "fresh eggs," or any legend, symbol, picture, representation of device declaring or tending to convey the impression that the eggs are fresh may be applied only to eggs meeting the requirements of grade A or AA.

(d) No label container, display, or advertisement of eggs shall contain incorrect, fraudulent, or misleading representations. No person shall advertise eggs for sale unless the unabbreviated grade and size-weight class are conspicuously designated in block letters at least half as high as the tallest letter in the word "eggs" or the tallest figure in the price, whichever is larger.

(e) Letters and numerals used to designate the grade and size-weight class of eggs marketed in containers shall be clearly legible at least % inch in height. Cartons, cases or other containers holding two or more containers of eggs shall also be lettered and numbered in accordance with the provisions of this paragraph. Any carton, case, or other container which is reused shall upon such reuse have obliterated or removed therefrom any labels, lettering, numerals, or other symbols or representations not applicable to the contents upon such reuse.

§ 3505. Advertising of eggs

Advertising of eggs by the roadside, newspaper, magazine, handbills, radio, television, window signs, store displays, or in any manner shall include quality and size designations if the price is shown or stated. Such quality and size designations shall be prominent and conspicuous and the advertising shall be in no way deceptive or dishonest.

§ 3506. Limitation in use of descriptive terms

It shall be unlawful for any person to use such descriptive terms as, fresh, new laid, hennery, direct from farm, farm fresh, best, number one, fancy, special, extra, select, or any other word, figures, symbols, which imply or modify the quality designation in describing eggs of lesser quality than Grade A as defined in the grade specifications.

§ 3507. Invoice requirements

Every person selling eggs to retailers, restaurants, hotels, public and private eating places and institutions shall furnish a dated invoice showing the exact size and quality of such eggs, or shall be invoiced as "UNCLASSIFIED."

§ 3508. Sanitation and related matters

(a) Any person assembling, transporting, marketing, or processing graded eggs for marketing shall keep the eggs at a temperature not higher than sixty degrees Fahrenheit. In addition, any container, including the packaging material therein or associated therewith, shall be clean, unbroken and free from foreign odor.

(b) The State Board of Agriculture shall by rules and regulations, provide for the keeping, processing, transporting, and the sale of eggs under sanitary conditions.

(c) Nothing in this Act or in any rules or regulations of the State Board of Agriculture shall be construed to exempt any persons or premises from the application thereto of any laws otherwise applicable and relating to the operation of establishments or facilities for the storing, transporting, sale, distribution, preparation, or serving of food.

§ 3509. Sale of eggs unfit for human food

No person shall offer for sale, sell, trade or otherwise exchange eggs for human consumption which are classified inedible or loss eggs as defined by the United States Department of Agriculture rules and regulations on eggs.

§ 3510. Exemptions

Producers are exempt from Sections 3503 and 3504 if they sell eggs produced by their own flocks provided such eggs are not sold at an established place of business detached from the premises of the production and provided they are not advertised or displayed to the public with price, or size, or quality designations or any descriptive terms as stated in Section 3505.

Newspapers or any other advertising media shall not be liable, pursuant to the provisions of this chapter, for publishing advertisements furnished by a vendor or distributor of eggs or anyone acting on their behalf.

§ 3511. Enforcement

This Act together with the rules and regulations as promulgated by the State Board of Agriculture shall be enforced by the State Board of Agriculture or its authorized agents. Any additional rules and regulations shall be determined by a public hearing after due notice.

§ 3512. Power of enforcement officers

In order to carry out the provisions of this act, the State Board of Agriculture, or its representatives, may enter, during the usual hour of business any warehouse, store, building, market carrier or vehicle at, in, or from which eggs are sold, offered or exposed for sale and to examine any or all such eggs for the purpose of determining whether the provisions of the Act have been violated.

§ 3513. Violations and penalties

Whoever violates any of the provisions of this Act, or willfully, interferes with the State Board of Agriculture or its duly authorized agents in the performance of its or their duties shall

be fined not less than $25.00 nor more than $100.00 for every such violation. Justices of the Peace shall have jurisdiction over such violation.

§ 3514. Severability

If any of the provisions of this Act or parts thereof shall be held to be invalid for any reason, such holding shall not be construed as affecting the validity of any remaining section or part of this Act.

Section 2. All acts or parts of any Act inconsistent with this Act are repealed to the extent of such inconsistency.

Section 3. The sum of $7,600 is hereby appropriated to the State Board of Agriculture for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1968, for the following purposes in connection with this Act:

Salary and Wages

$1,800.00

Travel

1,900.00

Contractual Services

1,200.00

Supplies and Materials

400.00

Capital Outlay

2,300.00

TOTAL COST

$7,600.00

Section 4. This Act is a supplementary appropriation act and the funds appropriated shall be paid from the General Fund of the State of Delaware. Any amount so appropriated and remaining unexpended as of June 30, 1968 shall revert to the General Fund of the State of Delaware.

Section 5. This Act shall become effective July 1, 1968. Approved March 4, 1968.