Williams-Sonoma admits labeling China products ‘Made in USA’ in $3.2M case

Williams-Sonoma admits labeling China products ‘Made in USA’ in $3.2M caseWilliams-Sonoma admits labeling China products ‘Made in USA’ in $3.2M case
via Clotee Pridgen Allochuku (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Home products giant Williams-Sonoma has been fined a record $3.175 million for falsely advertising some of its products as “Made in USA” when they were manufactured overseas, particularly in China.
Key points:
  • Williams-Sonoma admitted to the allegations brought by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), court documents show.
  • The fine is so far the largest civil penalty in a “Made in USA” case.
  • As part of the settlement, the company is now subject to enhanced compliance measures, including clear disclosures about the origin of its products.
The details:
  • Williams-Sonoma Inc. operates under various brand names, including Williams Sonoma Home, Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, Pottery Barn Teen, PBTeen, West Elm and Rejuvenation. Last year, it recorded $8.67 billion in sales with a $1.13 billion profit.
  • In 2020, the FTC charged the company with violating a previous order by advertising some of its products — including mattress pads and other items — as “Made in USA.” These claims were found to be deceptive as the products were actually made in China and other countries.
  • The company has agreed to a civil penalty of $3,175,387, the largest ever imposed in a case involving fraudulent “Made in USA” claims. The settlement also requires the business to adhere to several compliance measures, including making a clear and conspicuous disclosure about the extent to which any product with a qualified “Made in USA” claim contains foreign parts, ingredients, components or processing.
  • FTC Chair Lina M. Khan emphasized the negative impact of deceptive marketing in a news release:

“Williams-Sonoma claimed its products were made in the United States even though they were made in China. Williams-Sonoma’s deception misled consumers and harmed honest American businesses. Today’s record-setting civil penalty makes clear that firms committing Made-in-USA fraud will not get a free pass.”

  • Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Brian M. Boynton, head of the Justice Department’s Civil Division, said they will continue to work with the FTC to halt such practices.
Share this Article
Your leading
Asian American
news source
© 2024 NextShark, Inc. All rights reserved.