U.S. FTC Amends Fur Products Labeling Act Regulations

Vol. 768 | May 30, 2014

The Fur Act and rules promulgated under the Fur Act establish requirements for disclosure, labeling and advertising of products made partly or entirely of fur to assist a consumer in making an informed purchasing decision

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has amended 16 CFR 301 – Regulations Under the Fur Products Labeling Act. The rule was published in Federal Register¹ on May 28, 2014, and becomes effective November 19, 2014.

These amendments incorporate the provisions of Truth in Fur Labeling Act (TFLA), provide more flexibility in labeling, update the Fur Products Name Guide and revise the guaranty provisions. Following is an overview of the major amendments to the regulation:

Labeling Amendments

Label Size: The label size requirement, 1.75 inches by 2.75 inches, is removed to provide flexibility to manufacturer, particularly those who make smaller items. The label now can be of any size as long as the label is conspicuous and attached with sufficient durability to ensure delivery to the consumer.

Label Text Size: The label text requirement of 12 point or “pica” font size is removed. The text can be of any size as long as it is legible, conspicuous and readily accessible to prospective purchaser.

Order of Disclosure: The provision in 16 CFR Section 301.30 that prescribes a specific order for disclosures is eliminated providing more flexibility in labeling.

Additional Information: The prohibition on non-FTC information on front of the label in 16 CFR Section 301.29(a) is removed allowing additional information to be present on either side of the label as long as it is accurate and non-deceptive.

Composition Information: It is not required to disclose that the fur comes from “sides” or “flanks.”

Items Sold in Pairs: The items sold in pairs or ensembles can have only one label, if all units in the pair or group are of same fur and have the same country of origin. They are no longer required to be firmly attached to each other through the point of sale.

Truth in Fur Labeling Act Provisions

TFLA amended the Fur Act to eliminate exemption of fur products valued at less than $150 and replace it with a limited exemption for furs sold directly by hunters and trappers in face-to-face transactions under certain circumstances. These changes are incorporated in the amended Fur Products Labeling Regulation.

Fur Products Name Guide
The Name Guide is revised to correct typographical errors and species misidentification. Also, the term “Asiatic Raccoon” was retained to label fur products from the species nyctereutes procyonoides ratherthan allowing “Raccoon Dog,” as “Asiatic Raccoon” accurately describes the animal, is recognized by the consumers and hence would be less likely to lead to consumer confusion. In addition the FTC did not add to the name guide “Finnraccoon” as an alternate name for nyctereutes procyonoides that are raised in Finland.

Guaranty Provisions

Guaranty provisions were amended, as follows, to conform them to those governing textile products, and allow for and better address electronic commerce:

  • The definition of the terms ‘invoice and invoice or other document’ is added and the term ‘invoice’ and ‘invoice or other paper’ is revised to ‘invoice or other document’
  • Allow guarantor’s printed name and address to satisfy the signature requirement
  • Remove the requirement of separate guaranties to show the “date of shipment of the merchandise”

Finally, the requirement in 16 CFR Section 301.40 to assign an “item number or mark” to furs and to disclose it on invoices and labels is removed.

For questions, please contact:

Dr. Pratik Ichhaporia
Tel: +1.312.906.7720
Email: pratik.ichhaporia@intertek.com


¹http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-05-28/pdf/2014-11047.pdf

 

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