On March 14, 2014, the Federal Trade Commission issued final amendments to its Textile Labeling Rules, addressing fiber content and country-of-origin disclosures.
The Rules implement the Textile Fiber Products Identification Act, which requires that certain textiles sold in the United States carry labels disclosing the generic names and percentages by weight of the fibers in the product, the manufacturer or marketer name, and the country where the product was processed or manufactured.
The amendments are the result of public comments made in response to the FTC’s proposed ruling in May 2013. Changes to labeling requirements will include the following:
- Incorporate the updated International Organization for Standardization standard establishing generic fiber names for manufactured fibers;
- Allow certain hang-tags disclosing fiber names and trademarks, and performance information, without the need to disclose the product’s full fiber content;
- Clarify that an imported product’s country of origin is the country where it was processed or manufactured, as determined under laws and regulations enforced by U.S. Customs and Border Protection;
- Better address electronic commerce with revised definitions of “invoice” and “invoice or other paper”;
- Replace the requirement that guarantors sign continuing guarantees under penalty of perjury with a requirement that they acknowledge that providing a false guaranty is unlawful, and certify that they will actively monitor and ensure compliance with the applicable law; and
- Clarify the provision identifying textile fiber product categories and products that are exempt from the Act’s requirements.
The amended Rules will become effective 30 days after the Federal Register Notice is posted, which is expected to be soon.