Senator Presses FTC to Enforce Consequences for Made in USA Labeling Violators

Cathalijne Adams

Cathalijne Adams Writer/Researcher, AAM

Companies that deceptively market their products as Made in USA capitalize on the hard work of those committed to sustaining American manufacturing and the good-paying jobs the industry supports.   

Concerned by reports of this heinous form of fraud, West Virginia Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R) recently pressed the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to account for the lack of consequences in cases of false “Made in USA” labeling.

Earlier this year, the FTC found three companies had flouted the agency’s Made in USA labeling laws, but the agency did not impose any consequences for these companies.

“[Fraudulent Made in USA claims are] fairly prevalent,” said FTC Chairman Joseph Simons in response to Capito’s questioning during the Nov. 27 Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearing. “We get hundreds of complaints a year that people are improperly using the ‘Made in USA’ label. We are committed to investigating those.”

Though the FTC Commissioner Rohit Chopra called the labeling violations “brazen and deceitful,” naming these companies alone, as the agency has done, is insufficient to safeguard the integrity of the Made in USA label.  

With the aim of further disincentivizing Made in USA fraud, Simons stated that the FTC is evaluating how it might apply financial penalties.  

“As a general rule, we’ve only gotten injunctive relief in cases like this previously. But now we’re exploring whether we can find a good case that would be appropriate for monetary relief -- to serve as an additional deterrent,” Simons said.

Chopra added that the impact of this deceptive marketing has ramifications beyond consumers.

“And for those who lie – this cheapens the ‘Made In USA’ label. So, it’s not just hurting American consumers; it’s hurting every American manufacturer who is trying to do right,” Chopra said. “I want us to be much more aggressive with this actually.”

These concerns echo that of Democratic Sens. Tommy Baldwin (Wis.), Sherrod Brown (Ohio) and Chris Murphy (Conn.), who sent a letter to the FTC on Oct. 12 to advocate for greater labeling enforcement.

Unquestionably, it’s time for the FTC to defend American manufacturers and impose tougher penalties.

Join us in calling on the FTC to impose tougher rules and actual penalties on companies that cheat the system.

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Reposted from AAM

Posted In: Allied Approaches, From Alliance for American Manufacturing

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Sam Pizzigati

Sam Pizzigati Editor, Too Much online magazine

National Rifle Association chief Wayne LaPierre has had better weeks. First came the horrific early August slaughters in California, Texas, and Ohio that left dozens dead, murders that elevated public pressure on the NRA’s hardline against even the mildest of moves against gun violence. Then came revelations that LaPierre — whose labors on behalf of the nonprofit NRA have made him a millionaire many times over — last year planned to have his gun lobby group bankroll a 10,000-square-foot luxury manse near Dallas for his personal use. In response, LaPierre had his flacks charge that the NRA’s former ad agency had done the scheming to buy the mansion. The ad agency called that assertion “patently false” and related that LaPierre had sought the agency’s involvement in the scheme, a request the agency rejected. The mansion scandal, notes the Washington Post, comes as the NRA is already “contending with the fallout from allegations of lavish spending by top executives.”

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Corruption Coordinates

Corruption Coordinates