Made in America Labeling Conundrum Meets Good Wordsmithing

Posted on July 4, 2013

In case you haven’t felt the growing heat of our industry’s ire at the FTC’s Country of Origin Labeling let me be the first to tell you.. it’s hot.

Manufacturers are quite upset that they are not allowed to label the jewelry they make here on our shores as “Made in America.”

But there’s no sense in arguing and debating whether this should be so because the FTC says it IS so. So we have to get creative with our copywriting skills. We need good wordsmithing.

As Peggy Jo Donahue of MJSA said recently on a Linkedin MJSA discussion forum:

“The FTC has a guideline related to “Made in the USA” that affects all manufacturing industries in general, not just ours. For a product to be advertised or marked as simply “Made in the USA”, the FTC says that all or virtually all of its materials must originate in the U.S.

If all the metals and gems are from U.S, mines, however, or if they are recycled and it can be substantiated that they are recycled in the U.S., then a company can advertise “Made in the USA.”

A company could ALSO say ‘Made (or Manufactured) in the US from imported materials.” Or, it can state; “Buy American” in its ads. You simply cannot say “Made in the USA” without stating that the materials are imported. Unless, of course, you use U.S.-sourced gems or metals.”


So here’s what the Yankee Candle Company (how more American can you get?) has handled this dilemma and I like the wording very much. Props to Jennifer Heebner for sharing this on social media.

I vote for you all to use: “Made in the USA with the world’s finest materials.” Or maybe even “world’s finest precious gems and metals.”

The discussion that Peggy Jo contributed to is quite long and has many industry member’s piping in with opinions, politics and facts. You can read the whole thread on LinkedIn at MJSA’s Group page here.



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