Erik R. Lieberman ¦ 202.830.0300

Erik R. Lieberman is the founding principal of Lieberman PLLC. Lieberman has extensive experience on legal matters involving food safety, international trade, food labeling, agriculture, food marketing and the federal legislative and regulatory processes. Lieberman has been featured on Fox News, National Public Radio and C-SPAN, and in The Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times, Bloomberg Businessweek and The Washington Post. He is a frequent speaker at food industry conferences. Lieberman is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Florida and received his Juris Doctor from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He is a member of the Florida, District of Columbia, U.S. Supreme Court and U.S. Court of International Trade bars. Lieberman is a licensed customs broker. Lieberman is also a member of the Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance.

Formerly, Lieberman led the regulatory affairs division at the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), the trade association for the largest supermarket chains and wholesalers in the United States. As FMI’s vice president and chief regulatory counsel, Lieberman represented the food retailing and wholesaling industries before federal agencies ranging from the Food and Drug Administration and Department of Agriculture to the Department of Labor and Department of Justice. Lieberman worked with federal agencies in the rulemaking process to ensure that regulations were effective while not being unnecessarily burdensome on industry. Lieberman led the supermarket industry’s efforts on implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act. He also served as the primary point of contact at FMI for regulatory compliance and legal questions of member companies, advising the legal, food safety/quality assurance, meat, government affairs and communications/consumer affairs departments of the largest firms in the supermarket industry on these matters. In addition, Lieberman was responsible for managing FMI’s legal budgets and relationships with outside law firms.

Before joining FMI, Lieberman served as the Majority Regulatory Counsel for the House Small Business Committee. As Majority Regulatory Counsel, he was the primary advisor to the Chairwoman on administrative law matters. During his time on the Committee, he served as lead counsel for 20 full committee and subcommittee hearings on issues ranging from regulatory relief to antitrust, food safety, Medicare, data security, environmental protection and transportation. Lieberman conducted oversight on Department of Agriculture, Federal Trade Commission, Department of Justice, Department of Homeland Security and Environmental Protection Agency rulemaking and enforcement activities during his tenure with the Committee.

From 2004-2007, he was Director of Government Affairs at the National Grocers Association. Prior to that, he served as a legislative assistant to U.S. Senator Bob Graham.

Areas of experience:

Food Safety

FDA and USDA Regulations

The Food Safety Modernization Act

  • Foreign Supplier Verification Program Rule
  • Accreditation of Third-Party Auditors Rule
  • Preventive Controls Rules for Human and Animal Food
  • Produce Safety Rule
  • Sanitary Food Transportation Act
  • Food Defense Rule

Third-Party Auditing Standards and HACCP

  • SQF Code
  • Applying GFSI Schemes for Regulatory Compliance

 FDA and USDA Labeling Regulations

  • Nutrition labeling
  • Menu labeling
  • Country of Origin Labeling
  • Product claims
  • Standard of identity rules
  • Allergens
  • Editor of FMI’s Food Labeling Law for Retailers publication

Food Imports

  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection rules
  • FDA and USDA requirements for entry
  • Detentions
  • Adulteration/Misbranding standards
  • HTS/Classification
  • Free trade agreements

U.S. Federal Regulatory Process

  • Administrative Procedure Act
  • Regulatory Flexibility Act
  • Regulatory Review Process/E.O. 12866
  • Information Quality Act

U.S. Federal Legislative Process

  • House of Representatives
  • Senate

Ethical Sourcing

  • Sustainability
  • Environmental standards
  • Labor standards
University of Pennsylvania, Juris Doctor
Wharton School of Business, Certificate of Business and Public Policy
University of Florida, Bachelor of Arts
Phi Beta Kappa
FSPCA Lead Instructor Training for Preventive Controls for Human Food
Certified Food Safety HACCP Manager
SQF Lead Auditor Training
SQF Auditor Certificate of Attainment
Implementing SQF Systems (Post-Farm Gate)
District of Columbia
U.S. Court of International Trade
U.S. Supreme Court

IAFP Annual Meeting, “Using Federal Food Safety Data for Regulatory Compliance and Mitigating Risk,” Tampa, FL, July 10, 2017
Topco Meat Member Advisory Council, “Federal Regulatory Update: Key Issues for 2017,” New Orleans, LA, April 20, 2017
Food Marketing Institute, 2017 Legal Conference, “3-2-1 Is Your FSMA Program Ready for Liftoff?” Austin, TX, April 3, 2017
“National Grocers Association Annual Show, “Key Issues for Spanish Exporters to the U.S.,” Las Vegas, NV, February 13, 2017
ReFresh 2016, Applied Data Corporation, “Federal Regulatory Update:Menu Labeling and Grind Logs,” Clearwater, FL, October 4, 2016
EU Delegation to the U.S., “Review of Draft FSMA Preventive Controls for Human Food Guidance and FSMA Compliance Extensions,” Washington, DC, September 23, 2016
Embassy of France Session at Summer Fancy Food Show, “FSVP: What Exporters to the U.S. Should Expect,” New York, NY, June 27, 2016
Embassy of Italy, “FSVP: Key Issues for Italian Food Exporters to the U.S.,” Washington, DC, April 28, 2016
U.S. Chamber of Commerce Environment & Agriculture Committee, “Sanitary Food Transportation Act: Key Issues,” Washington, DC, April 22, 2016
National Grocers Association Annual Show, “Key Issues for Spanish Exporters to the U.S.,” Las Vegas, NV, February 29, 2016
ReFresh 2015, “Federal Regulatory Update: What Retailers Need to Know,” Clearwater, FL, September 22, 2015
German Ministry of Agriculture Delegation, “Key Issues for German Exporters to the U.S.,” Chicago, IL, June 8, 2015
Ka pasesi 2015 (What You Sow), “Key Issues for Food Exporters to the United States, Kaunas, Lithuania, March 26, 2015
Panhellenic Exporters Association Conference, “Exporting Food to the U.S: What You Need to Know,” Kalamata, Greece, December 9, 2014
Food Safety Consortium, “FSMA: A Look Forward–Produce Safety, Foreign Supplier Verification and Third-Party Auditing Rules,” Schaumberg, IL, November 17, 2014
EU Delegation to the U.S., “FSMA: Review of Supplemental Proposed Rules,” Washington, DC, November 4, 2014
SQF International Conference, “Food Safety Modernization Act: What You Need to Know,” Orlando, FL, October 28, 2014
ReFresh 2014, Applied Data Corporation, “The Food Safety Modernization Act and USDA Regulations: Key Updates for Retailers,” Clearwater, FL, September 24, 2014
District of Columbia Bar Brown Bag Lunch Series, “Food Labeling post-POM Wonderful LLC v. Coca-Cola Co.” Washington, DC, July 29, 2014
Food and Drug Law Institute: “Is the GRAS Process Broken? — FDLI Dialogue, (Moderator) Washington, DC, July 23, 2014
American Chamber of Commerce in Guatemala, “The Food Safety Modernization Act-What Exporters to the U.S. Need to Know,” Guatemala City, Guatemala, June 25, 2014
FDLI Canadian and U.S. Food, Drug, Cosmetics and Device Regulation, “FSMA: Impacts on Canadian Exporters and U.S. Importers,” Toronto, Canada, May 14, 2014
U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Environment and Agriculture Committee Meeting, “Sanitary Food Transportation Act Proposed Rule,” Washington, DC, April 30, 2014
AgroBalt 2014, “The Food Safety Modernization Act: What Exporters to the U.S. Need to Know,” Kaunas, Lithuania, April 4, 2014
FMI 2014 Legal Conference, “Food Safety: FSMA Foreign Supplier Verification Program Rule,” New Orleans, LA, March 31, 2014
FMI/GMA Supply Chain Conference, “FSMA Sanitary Food Transportation Act Proposed Rule,” Orlando, FL, February 18, 2014
FMI/AMI Meat Conference, “Regulatory and Food Safety Update,” Atlanta, GA, February 17, 2014
FDLI Food Week 2014, “Current Issues in Labeling and Nutrition Regulations,” Washington, DC, February 12, 2014
Food Safety Consortium, “FSMA Workshop,” Schaumburg, IL, December 5, 2013
SQF International Conference, “Federal Food Regulation Update,” Louisville, KY, November 5, 2013
FDLI International Conference China-U.S. Updates in Food and Drug Law, “Food: Importation and Trade Issues,” Beijing, China, October 15, 2013
ReFresh 2013 Applied Data Corporation, “Food Safety Update,” Clearwater, FL, October 8, 2013
Maples and Calder Client Briefing, “Changes to American Food Law: What Exporters to the U.S. Need to Know,” Dublin, Ireland, September 17, 2013
The Conference Board Product Stewardship and Regulatory Affairs Council, “Product Stewardship: Retail Perspectives,” Indianapolis, IN, June 4, 2013
FDLI Webinar, “Proposition 65: The Impact on Food and Beverage Products,” October 16, 2012
FDLI U.S.-Brazil Conference, “The Influence of Trade Associations in the International Marketplace,” Sao Paulo, Brazil, September 11, 2012
Food Safety Summit, “Food Safety Forensics: What Can Happen During Transportation,” Washington, DC, April 18, 2012
Mettler Toledo Customer Council, “Key Issues in Labeling and Packaging for 2012,” Las Vegas, NV, April 13, 2012
FMI/AMI Meat Conference, “Regulatory Update,” Orlando, FL, February 21, 2012
FMI/GMA Productivity Plus Conference, “2012 Washington Update: Key Issues Facing the Supply Chain,” Orlando, FL, January 25, 2012
FDLI 2012 Food Week Conference, “Advertising, Labeling and Nutrition: Roundtable Discussion,” Washington, DC, January 24, 2012

“Criminal Liability Under the Food Safety Modernization Act: What Every CEO Should Know,” Retail Leader, April 2014
“The Marketing of Local Foods and FSMA: What Will the Implications Be?” Food and Drug Law Institute Update, September/October 2013
“Will OMB Make the Right Decision on Menu Labeling?” University of Pennsylvania Law School, RegBlog, February 20, 2013
“Menu Labeling: Did FDA Overreach?” Food and Drug Law Institute Food and Drug Policy Forum (Volume 2, Issue 13, July 11, 2012)