- Henry Park
Upgrading "Made in the USA" guidance
In 1997, The Federal Trade Commission ("FTC") released a Policy Statement concerning when a manufacturer could claim that their products were "Made in the USA". Under that Policy Statement, a manufacturer can only make a "Made in the USA" claim when "all or virtually all" of the product is made in the United States.
Twenty-three years later, in July 2020, the FTC issued a notice of proposed rulemaking which would codify the previous Guidance (85 Fed. Reg. 43162). Under the Rule, a marketer cannot make unqualified Made in USA claims unless:
Final assembly or processing of the product occurs in the United States;
All significant processing that goes into the product occurs in the United States; and
All or virtually all ingredients or components of the product are made and sourced in the United States.
Under the Policy Statement, the FTC used administrative orders with injunctive relief (along with the threat of civil penalties). However, under the new Rule, the FTC can seek civil penalties from the start without the litigation risks associated with Section 13(b) of the FTC Act (see link).
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