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Williams-Sonoma to pay $1M fine for made-in-USA claims


The U.S. Federal Trade Commission said Thursday that home products and kitchen wares company Williams-Sonoma Inc. will pay a $1 million fine to the agency for making for making false, misleading or unsubstantiated claims that certain of its products are all, or virtually all, made in the United States.

The FTC said in its statement that the San Francisco-based firm had made the claims in connection with its Goldtouch Bakeware products, its Rejuvenation-branded products and its Pottery Barn Teen and Pottery Barn Kids-branded upholstered furniture products.

The FTC said it first filed its complaint in the matter in March.

Under terms of the final order, in addition to paying the fine, Williams-Sonoma is prohibited from making unqualified U.S.-origin claims for any product unless it can show the product’s final assembly or processing, and all significant processing, takes place in the United States and that all, or virtually all, of its components are made and sourced in the United States.

It said under the order, any qualified Made in USA claim must include “a clear and conspicuous” disclosure about the extent to which it contains foreign parts, components and/or processing.

A Williams-Sonoma spokesman could not be reached for comment.

The FTC said last month that Kohl’s Department Stores Inc. had agreed to pay $220,000 to settle allegations it violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act by refusing to provide complete records of transactions to consumers whose personal information was used by identity thieves.





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