Anchorage, Alaska (KINY) - Alaska Attorney General Treg Taylor Friday sent letters to 44 businesses reminding them that it is illegal to remove foreign country of origin markings from products.
Last year Attorney General Taylor filed a lawsuit against B. Merry Studio, Inc., alleging that they labeled products that were made in the Philippines as “Alaskan Made.” The Department of Law has continued to receive information indicating that other companies may be removing foreign country of origin markings from products and selling them to consumers who likely believe that the products are arts and crafts that are made in Alaska.
“Tourists and Alaskans want to buy authentic Alaskan-made products and support local artisans. Legitimate Alaskan artists, Native craftsman and honest shops should not be forced to compete against products that were made cheaply out of the country, but do not have the required label. My office has the obligation to ensure products are identified accurately and promoted legally,” said Attorney General Taylor.
Attorney General Taylor’s reminder letter stated that he has directed the Department of Law’s Consumer Protection Unit to investigate allegations of illegal country of origin label removal and to prosecute violators. Violators may face civil penalties up to $25,000 per violation.
The Alaska Department of Law’s Consumer Protection Unit encourages anyone who has evidence of illegal country of origin label removal to file a complaint. Complaint forms can be found at https://law.alaska.gov/department/civil/consumer/cp_complaint.html.
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