16 C.F.R. Part 503
Code of Federal Regulations
Title 16, Volume 1, Part 503
Revised as of January 1, 2000
From the U.S. Government Printing Office via GPO Access
TITLE 16--COMMERCIAL PRACTICES
CHAPTER I--FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION
PART 503--REGULATIONS UNDER SECTION 4
OF THE FAIR PACKAGING AND LABELING ACT
The regulations in parts 500, 501, and 502 of this chapter are necessarily general in application and requests for formal rulings, statements of policy or interpretations shall be addressed to the Secretary of the Commission for consideration. Statements of policy or interpretations binding on the Commission will be published in the Federal Register. However, technical questions not involving policy consideration may be answered by the staff.
[36 FR 23058, Dec. 3, 1971]
Recent questions submitted to the Commission concerning whether certain articles, products or commodities are included under the definition of the term consumer commodity, as contained in section 10(a) of the Fair Packaging and Labeling Act, have been considered in the light of the Commission's interpretation of that term as set forth in Sec. 503.5 of this part as follows:
(a) The Commission is of the opinion that the following commodities or classes of commodities are not "consumer commodities" within the meaning of the Act.
(b) The Commission is of the opinion that the following commodities or classes of commodities are "consumer commodities" within the meaning of the Act:
[35 FR 6185, Apr. 16, 1970]
To clarify the identity of a manufacturer, packer, or distributor for the purpose of Sec. 500.5 of this chapter, the following represents the opinions of the Commission.
(a) A manufacturer of a bulk product who supplies the product to a contract packager and permits his bulk product to be packaged by the contract packager remains the manufacturer of the commodity, if the contract packager does not perform any act other than package filling and labeling.
(c) A person or firm who supplies a formula and/or specifications to a contract packager but who takes no part in the actual production of the consumer commodity is not the manufacturer of the consumer commodity for the purpose of Sec. 500.5(a) of this chapter. This is true whether the person or firm who supplies the formula or specifications, or both, also supplies the raw materials which are to be reacted, mixed, or otherwise modified to produce the consumer commodity.
(d) A corporation which wholly owns a manufacturing subsidiary which retains its separate corporate identity, is not the manufacturer of the consumer commodities manufactured by the wholly owned subsidiary, but must qualify its name if it elects to use its name on the label. Such qualification may be "Manufactured for ____________", "Distributed by ______________", or "Manufactured by ______________ (XYZ, Inc., City, State, Zip Code, a subsidiary of ABC, Inc.)".
[34 FR 4956, Mar. 7, 1969, as amended at 34 FR 11199, July 3, 1969]
To clarify the requirement for declaration of net quantity in terms of count for the purpose of Secs. 500.6 and 500.7 of this chapter, the following interpretation is rendered.
(a) When a consumer commodity is properly measured in terms of count only, or in terms of count and weight, volume, area, or dimension, the regulations are interpreted not to require the declaration of the net content as "one", provided the statement of identity clearly expresses the fact that only one unit is contained in the package. Thus the unit synthetic sponge, the unit light bulb, and the unit dry cell battery do not require a net quantity statement of "one sponge," "one light bulb," or "one dry cell battery." However, there still exists the necessity to provide a net quantity statement to specify weight, volume, area, or dimensions when such are required. For example, the synthetic sponge which is packaged, requires dimensions such as "5 in. x 3 in. x 1 in." A multicomponent package or a package containing two or more units of the same commodity shall bear the net quantity statement in terms of count, and weight, volume, area, or dimensions as required. This interpretation does not preclude the option to enumerate a unit count on a single packaged commodity if so desired.
[34 FR 18087, Nov. 8, 1969]
Sec. 503.5 Interpretation of the definition of "consumer commodity" as contained in section 10(a) of the Fair Packaging and Labeling Act.
(a) Section 10(a) of the Fair Packaging and Labeling Act defines the term consumer commodity in four classifications. These are:
(b) Section 10(a) then expressly excludes
(c) Pursuant to sections 5 and 7 of the Fair Packaging and Labeling Act, the authority to promulgate regulations and to enforce the Act as to any food, drug, device, or cosmetic has been delegated to the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare and as to any other "consumer commodity" to the Federal Trade Commission.
(d) As to these articles, products, or commodities subject to regulation by the Federal Trade Commission, the legislative history of the Act demonstrates the intent of Congress, for the reasons stated therein, to place the following categories outside the scope of the definition of "consumer commodity":
(e) The articles, products, or commodities that are within the terms of section 10(a) of the Act and subject to regulation by the Federal Trade Commission are either expendable commodities for consumption by individuals, expendable commodities used for personal care, or expendable commodities used for household services. The primary terms in section 10(a) for defining these categories are:
(f) These terms are defined as follows:
(g) The foregoing definition serves to amplify the definition of "consumer commodity" supplied by Congress in section 10(a) of the Act. As questions arise as to whether specific articles, products, or
(h) With respect to articles, products, or commodities included within the definition of "consumer commodities", the Commission will consider requests for exemptions in accordance with section 5(b) of the Act and Sec. 500.3(e) of this chapter, and will make public its rulings on all such requests.
[34 FR 12945, Aug. 9, 1969]
Sec. 503.6 Packagers' duty to withhold availability of packages imprinted with retail sale price representations.
To clarify the requirements, under part 502 of this chapter, that a packager or labeler will not make packages marked with retail sale price representations available in any circumstance where he knows or should have reason to know that it will be used as an instrumentality for deception or for frustration of value comparison, the following represents the opinions of the Commission:
(a) Details of a plan to provide special packaging or special package sizes bearing retail sale price representations should contain the condition that customers will not be provided with such packages
(b) A packager or labeler who, in good faith, takes reasonable and prudent measures to verify the performance of his customers will be deemed to have satisfied his obligation under the regulations. If the packager has taken such steps, the fact that a particular customer has failed to resell the packages at a price which fully passes on to the purchaser the represented savings or sale price advantage shall not alone place a seller in violation of the regulations.
(c) Any packager or labeler who determines that a customer does not intend to fulfill or has not fulfilled the conditions of an offer should immediately refrain from further sale under that offer to the customer. In situations where proper fulfillment of the conditions of an offer are in question, the Commission will resolve the issue after appropriate investigation of the facts submitted.
[36 FR 23058, Dec. 3, 1971]