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US Criminalises POS Consumer Awareness Campaigns

On Monday the following law was signed into effect in the United States by President George W. Bush.

On its face the law’s primary effect will be to make it a federal crime to stick consumer awareness type information , such as “This product contains Genetically Modified material”, on to consumer products.

The only reference to the new law which comes up in Google News at present is to a brief in the Salt Lake Tribune saying. “The bill, HR 2621, is aimed at heading off problems such as one in which a 10-year-old boy found a pamphlet with racial slurs in a cake mix box. “



1st Session
H. R. 2621

To amend title 18, United States Code, with respect to consumer product protection.
July 25, 2001


To amend title 18, United States Code, with respect to consumer product protection.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
This Act may be cited as the `Consumer Product Protection Act of 2001'.
(a) Section 1365 of title 18, United States Code, is amended--
(1) by redesignating subsections (f) and (g) as (g) and (h) respectively;
(2) by inserting after subsection (e) the following new subsection:
`(f)(1) Whoever knowingly stamps, prints, places, or inserts any writing in or on any consumer product that affects interstate or foreign commerce, or the box, package, or other container of any such product, prior to its sale to any consumer, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.
`(2) This subsection shall not apply in any case in which the manufacturer, retailer, or distributor of the product in the due course of business consents to the stamping, printing, placing, or inserting of a writing for promotional or sales purposes.'; and
(3) in subsection (h) (as redesignated by paragraph (1))--
(A) in paragraph (3)(D), by striking `and';
(B) in paragraph (4), by striking the period and inserting `; and'; and
(C) by adding after paragraph (4) the following:
`(5) the term `writing' means any form of representation or communication (including handbills, notices, or advertising) that contains letters, words, graphic, or pictorial representations.'.
(b) CONFORMING AMENDMENTS- Sections 2261A and 2332b(g)(3) of title 18, United States Code, are each amended by striking `1365(g)(3)' and inserting `1365'.

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