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July 04, 2007 

Happy Independence Day

Since today is Independence Day in the U.S., the AP reports on the growing movement of state legislatures passing laws requiring American flags to be "Made in the USA". The article notes:

Minnesota has passed the strongest measure, a new law that goes into effect at year's end requiring every Old Glory sold in state stores to be domestically produced. Violations are a misdemeanor, punishable by up to a $1,000 fine and 90 days in jail.

In Arizona, schools and public colleges were required starting July 1 to outfit every classroom from junior high up with a made-in-the-USA flag. Tennessee requires all U.S. [and state] flags bought via state contract to be made here, and similar bills are moving forward in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

The article also mentions the Flag Manufacturers Association of America's (FMAA) “Certified Made in the USA” certification program. Under the FMAA's program, American flags carrying the FMAA-approved certification "have been made in the USA of materials that are domestic in origin and that all processes in every step of its manufacture were completed in USA facilities with USA labor." To date, FMAA has certified the following five flag manufacturers as “Certified Made in the U.S.A.”: Annin & Co., C.F. Flag, J.C. Schultz Enterprises, Inc., The Flag Source and Valley Forge Flag.

While all goods imported into the U.S. must be marked with the country of origin, there is no affirmative requirement for American made products to be labeled with the country of origin. However, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requires that any product advertised or labeled as "Made in USA" must be "all or virtually all" produced in the U.S. The FTC has stated that the "all or virtually all" standard means that all significant parts and processing that go into the product must be of U.S. origin and the product should contain no or negligible amounts of foreign content.

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