In December 1997, the FTC issued an Enforcement Policy Statement compiling its standards and enforcement practices for “Made in USA” claims. The statement explained that companies may either make qualified or unqualified “Made in USA” claims.
An unqualified claim (e.g., “Made in USA”) means that “all or virtually all” significant parts and processes that go into making the products are of U.S. origin, and final assembly and processing occur in the United States. Any foreign content or production is negligible.
A qualified claims (e.g., “65 percent U.S. content” or “made of imported and U.S. materials”), on the other hand, describe a product’s extent, amount, or type of domestic content or production.
According to the FTC’s statement, “in order to be effective, any qualifications or disclosures should be sufficiently clear, prominent, and understandable to prevent deception.” Companies should be able to provide detailed information about the origins of their products.