“Made in the USA” and other American-made designations have long been popular advertising slogans for manufacturers. As such, in order to protect consumers from making purchasing decisions based on false claims, the Federal Trade Commission and many states have adopted rules specifically regulating when goods may be labeled “Made in the USA.”
Instead of clarifying the law, however, these rules have created confusion as manufacturers struggle to interpret the resulting web of statutes, regulations and other guidance. As a result, any manufacturer that labels its products “Made in the USA” exposes itself to significant risk. Moreover, a recent amendment to the law in California brings with it a new set of uncertainties.