On Wednesday, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) announced settlement of its false advertising claims against iSpring Water Systems, LLC (“iSpring”). According to the FTC’s complaint, iSpring, a company that sells water filtration systems and parts, falsely claimed and marketed that its products are “built in USA.” In fact, according to the FTC, iSpring “sources significant inputs to its products overseas,” and other “products are wholly imported.”
What are the Terms of the FTC’s False Advertising Settlement?
Pursuant to its settlement with the FTC, iSpring is prohibited from making any future “made in USA” or any other country-of-origin claims about a product or service unless such claims are true. To that end, on a going-forward basis, iSpring may only make such claims if its products’ final assembly or processing takes place in the USA and that all or virtually all ingredients or components of the products are made and sourced in the United States.
Protect Yourself Against False Advertising Claims
We recently blogged about a joint FTC-New York State Attorney General false advertising lawsuit. The FTC is expected to remain vigilant in its enforcement of Section 5(a) of the FTC Act during the new administration. Therefore, it is imperative that companies ensure that all marketing materials comply with federal and state advertising laws, rules and regulations by consulting with competent counsel before commencing any advertising campaign.