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Commission approval of Federal Register notice – Following a public comment period, the Commission has voted to retain the agency’s Guides for Select Leather and Imitation Leather Products, commonly known as the Leather Guides, in their current form. In May 2007, as part of the FTC’s ongoing regulatory review, the agency issued a Federal Register notice requesting comments on the Guides. Adopted in 1996, the Guides address misrepresentations about the composition and characteristics of certain leather and imitation leather products, and state that disclosure of non-leather content should be made for material that appears to be, but is not, leather. The notice sought comments on the continuing need for the Guides, industry adoption of the Guides, the costs and benefits of the Guides, suggested changes to the Guides, conflicts or overlaps between the Guides and other regulations, changes in consumer perceptions and preferences, and other issues.

In response to the request for comment, the Commission received four comments. The Federal Register notice announced today, which will be published soon and can be found now on the FTC’s Web site as a link to this press release, discusses the comments, which primarily concerned the usefulness of the Guides and several suggested changes to them. After evaluating the comments, which were submitted by the Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America, the Leather Industries of America, the Sponge and Chamois Institute, and Design Resources, Inc., the Commission has decided to retain the Guides in their current form.

The Commission vote to retain the Leather Guides in their current form was 4-0. (FTC File No. P078008; the staff contact is Susan E. Arthur, FTC Southwest Region, 214-979-9370; see press release dated May 18, 2007.)

Copies of the documents mentioned in this release are available from the FTC’s Web site at and from the FTC’s Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20580. Call toll-free: 1-877-FTC-HELP.

(FYI 24.2008.wpd)

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