For the past few years, businesses choose to affix the indication “Made in France” on their products. It consists of a marketing strategy and a competitive advantage since consumers are increasingly attentive and sensitive on the origin of the products they buy.
Today, only food products imperatively bear the indication “Made in + Country” to protect consumers. These are subject to strict regulation in the European Union. However, businesses manufacturing products like textile materials are free to use or not this indication as commercial argument. Indeed, European authorities advocate freedom to trade and free of movement of goods for these types of products. The jurisprudence of the Court of Justice of the European Union authorises national legislations to solely set up optional markings. The “Made in” is thus undefined, facultative and difficult to control.
In the absence of regulation, the manufacturer must bear the risks if he decides to affix the indication “Made in France” on his products. He must ensure that he is respecting the provisions of the Consumer Code and of the French Customs Code in order to protect the consumer.
Furthermore, the manufacturer or importer must be able to prove that the product has entirely been manufactured in France or that the ‘final substantial transformation’ has been carried out in France (Article 24 of the Community Customs Code).
Finally, the prudent and diligent manufacturer must provide the necessary documentation to legitimate the indication “Made in France” affixed on his manufactured products. This documentation shall be clear and intelligible because it aims at informing consumers on the origin of the product.
To protect both consumers and manufacturers, it would be appropriate to consider a European regulation for the manufactured products.