Prefer Products Born in the USA? Be Sure to Check the Label
As Springsteen’s timeless classic reminds us, patriotism never goes out of style. What’s more, many consumers prefer clothing, cars and other products bearing a label proudly claiming it to be “Born in the USA.”
Naturally, we expect “Made in the USA” product claims to be as honest as young George Washington when he copped to chopping down his dad’s cherry tree. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. That’s why the FTC wants you to know there are laws and guidelines to help you understand exactly what you’re buying — particularly if you prefer to “buy American:”
- “Made in the USA” legally means all or almost all the product was made in America. In other words, products with this label should contain practically no material from other countries.
- If an automobile, textile, or wool product is “Made in the USA,” the label should say that. Other products don’t have to bear this label.
- Labels on textile and wool products must identify where the product was made.
- The law requires automobiles made since October 1, 1994, for sale in the U.S,. to have a label stating where the car was assembled. The label also must specify the percentage of equipment made in the U.S. and Canada, and the country where the engine and transmission were made.
If you believe a product promoted as "Made in USA" is not American-made or contains significant foreign parts or processing, file a complaint with the FTC.