Store Labels Products 'Made in America' -- But They're Not

A lot of people enjoy buying American-made products and sometimes will even go out of their way to do so. Nothing like feeling good supporting local businesses when we can, right? So imagine how upset some people were to find out that products advertised as "Made in America" at one well-known retailer were actually made in other countries.


And to add insult to injury, the display included many red, white, and blue Fourth of July–themed items, including glow cups, a chalk play set, a bubble machine, and a flying disk. They were all made in China, not the good ol' U.S. of A.

Walmart customer Skyler Strickland noticed the false advertising at his local store in Wilson, North Carolina, when he recently went to purchase a ceiling fan that was part of a "Made in America" display.

"They had some fans there and I wanted one 'cause [of] when it was so hot," he said. "I turned the box over to look at the specs on it, and [it] says 'Made in China' on the bottom." He alerted the store to the problem and said he only got a canned response a week later.

It wasn't until a local news team investigated that the big-box store fixed the problem. The ABC 11 team checked out the display and discovered that while some products, like a kids' soccer ball and some coolers, were made in America, many others were not.

Strickland said, "When I see they're trying to pass off a foreign item [as one] that's domestically made, that's offensive to me." 

Walmart finally explained the discrepancy, and it looks like it was a case of things just falling through the cracks, not a deliberate case of misrepresentation.

"Walmart always strives for 100% accuracy," the retailer said in a statement. "The store posted the signs for coolers and paper goods made in America, and we didn't do a very good job of taking the signs down as new products filled the shelves. The bottom line is that our customers want transparency and authenticity, and we're going to give them that."

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It's still pretty crappy that they didn't take the care to make sure things were labeled correctly, and it sucks that they didn't immediately respond to Strickland's initial complaint, but I'm glad they finally acknowledged the mistake, and hopefully they will take better care with such matters in the future.

It's just wrong to take advantage of people's patriotism. For those that want to buy American-made products, Strickland has a suggestion. "Just be careful to check the labels and make sure that it's what it's supposed to be," he said.

Do you prefer to buy American?


Image via ABC 11

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