Sen. Feinstein stops attack on California Truth in Labeling Law
On Wednesday, July 18, Senator Dianne Feinstein derailed federal legislation that would have preempted California’s Made in USA truth in labeling law. Senator Feinstein blocked a motion for unanimous consent of the US Senate to pass S. 118 by Utah Senator Mike Lee. S. 118 would have eliminated enforcement of a state Made in USA law, leaving only the weak and ambiguous labeling regulations of the Federal Trade Commission.
The Consumer Federation of California applauds Senator Feinstein for standing up for US workers and consumers. Under California law, a product cannot be offered for sale in the state bearing a Made in USA or Made in America label if less than 95% of the product’s contents or components are American made. (California law allows a Made in USA label for products with up to 10% imported content if no American source for those components exists). In contrast, the Federal Trade Commission has a history of lax enforcement of its inconsistent Made in USA labeling standard. In one glaring case, the FTC settled a complaint against a shoe manufacturer that allows it to place a Made in America label on shoes that contain 99% foreign content.
Elimination of California’s truth in labeling law would enable the deception of consumers who seek out American made goods, and it would give an unfair labeling advantage to businesses that export US jobs to low wage countries to the detriment of their competitors who are committed to American manufacturing.